When i first moved to San Francisco back in 2007 I kept running into this one episode of this one show called Worst Case Scenario… well maybe it was something else but if it wasn’t named that, it should have been (you get the idea). And when i say I kept running into it I mean I saw clips from this show 3 or 4 different times in a two month span. It must have been one of those discovery channel worm holes or something. Pesky. Anyways – this particular show was all about what would happen if San Francisco had The Big One. In all caps. More like The Really Really Big One. Well… let me tell you what would happen – of course both bridges would collapse (because this is worst case scenario TV) and because both the marina AND the airport (good thinking planner ppl) are built on landfill the eathquake would certainly send them both sinking into the ocean or something making both completely unusable. Of course the city would be engulfed in flames because of the gas fires (that actually did reek havoc in San Francisco in the early 1900s) and because all of the motherfucking houses TOUCH. Sheesh. So the citizens (ME) would be unable to get any supplies because boats couldn’t dock and planes couldn’t land. plus we couldn’t leave north or east because no bridges (west is ocean). The traffic would obviously be SO BAD going south that the most viable option is (as my mother puts it) to “strap on your walkin’ shoes and head out”.
Needless to say when I first moved to San Francisco I was terrified there would be a big earthquake. THE BIG ONE. Because it was just waiting for me to arrive, right? The earth timed itself perfectly. How nice. And it’s not like I haven’t been in an earthquake before. I have. Big ones, too (7.0 in seattle?). But this was San Francisco! And it’s supposed to float away! So i was nervous … until I went through two and then three smallish earthquakes and remembered – oh yeah, by the time my brain registers what it is, it’s over with. So I transferred my anxiety onto more pressing matters… like the mice in the walls or the homework pile overtaking my desk.
But then! I decided to move back to Seattle. And the summer before I left I thought – oh god, just three more months until I’m out of here and earthquake free! It’s coming down to the WIRE on this one! So once again I was nervous, gritting my teeth and thinking, “just hold on for a little while longer moving and growing earth, I’m almost home free!” And then I moved. And pheww! What a sigh of relief that was! Back to Seattle where they are awaiting their very own over do Big One. But I didn’t mind so much because Seattle is Seattle. It’s home and i will be forever safe there. Allegedly.
Fast forward 6 months and my decision to move back to The Danger Zone. Plus there was that big earthquake in Haiti and in Chile… the Chile one occurring as i was driving all my worldly possession straight toward the San Andreas. Yippee! Basically I have the fear again. Which makes it surprisingly difficult to drive over bridges by myself. I feel like that one episode of MTVs true life where they followed three people with phobias and one of them lived in New Jersey and couldn’t drive over bridges so he was pretty much trapped. Anyway – this new found anxiety will eventually disperse with time, but as it stands the repetition of “it’s going to be ok, just get over the bridge” that runs through my head about 30 times during my morning commute is rather disturbing. At least going over the bay bridge isn’t as bad as the golden gate. Eesh.
I guess we can file this one under: New Found Crazy. With capital letters to boot.