I was wholly unconcerned with yesterday’s earthquake. I didn’t actually know there’d been an earthquake until I got into work. After surfing a few sites I was tempted to follow everybody’s lead and let the world know how little I’d been affected by the event, as so many other of my fellow Britons felt compelled to do. (“Nothing happened! I must email a news organisation right away!”)
The quake has been brilliant and worrying in a way. Brilliant because it’s brought out the best in dry humour. Worrying because of the number of people who thought it was a) terrorism or b) more serious than one of those rather big quakes where a lot of people die.
Thankfully two of my favourite blogs were on hand to make dry comments. Firstly, Matthew:
“Certainly in the Further East thousands die every year on account of these blasted tectonic plates having a rub, so I’m not going to start trivialising anything. But when the worst damage is a bunch of chimneys falling over and a gaggle of smokers assembling outside in their dressing gowns to say, ‘Ooh, reet wobbler that, Dave,’ it really shows how unendingly ridiculous we are as a nation; or then again perhaps how well-equipped we are to deal with such things. Also it’s a good study of what it’d be like if you were cut off from civilisation, zombie holocaust style, because it seems you only accept it was an earthquake when there’s enough of a consensus going on about you. That is, before you turn on the news and see the geologists waffling on. But you’ve got to wonder what’d happen if there was a properly awful event and the media and phone networks collapsed – if you literally had your local community and nothing else – and no expertise either.
I think I’d be the bastard who’d start making up fibs about what’d caused it, see.”
Secondly, Andrew Collins:
“Not having listened to the radio yesterday morning or seen the news on the internet, I was oblivious to the destruction that had been wrought across Britain. I walked into the London Underground, my curiosity piqued by the Standard‘s sensational coverage, and found that on the electronic update screens every single Tube line was advertising “good service”. An earthquake had hit London and not a single Tube line was showing “minor delays”? What kind of rubbish earthquake was this? Had we called in Charlton Heston and George Kennedy for nothing?”
Finally, the BBC’s Have Your say site is hilarious on this topic. Not intentionally, but there’s a large number of people who worryingly think this event is bigger than Jesus and The Beatles combined.