This is a brand new fear. Living in New York, Cleveland, and Boston for most of my life, I never thought much about earthquakes. Then I moved to San Francisco a few months back, and now:
  1. I feel a zap of adrenaline every time a truck passes, or the washing machine starts its spin dry, or the kids upstairs gallop down the hall.
  2. I go to the earthquake exhibit at the California Academy of Sciences hoping to be educated about precautions, preparations, what to do when an earthquake hits, etc., and leave armed with the knowledge that the really big earthquake everyone says is not an "if" but a "when" will be even more terrible than I had imagined.
  3. I think back with nostalgia to the tornado drills of my youth in Ohio. Those drills scared the crap out of me, but before a giant funnel of destruction hurls itself down from the sky and into your path, you at least get some warning.
    I'm actually confused about this. *Is* there such a thing as an earthquake warning? Or does just living in San Francisco mean that we should consider ourselves warned?
  4. When we have our architect friends over for dinner, I bug them about where *exactly* we should stand when an earthquake strikes to avoid being crushed to death.
    Please pass the chicken!
  5. I find myself eyeing the bookcase and dresser in the room as I sing my kids to sleep and drawing imaginary physics chalkboard-style lines from these heavy objects to my babies' sweet heads.
    Because I am a totally cheerful and not at all morbid person!
  6. I really like it here, though.