|So, when an earthquake starts, you have
One - run downstairs, into the street, and let massive
buildings and dangerous power cables collapse on you.
Two - run upstairs and prepare to fall from an even
Three - become an Asian philosopher, accept that your
fate is already decided, and do nothing.
During my first few earthquakes, I danced the mad dance
of a man with three brains arguing where the feet should go.
Now, I'm the monk with two feet sleeping. I just wait it out.
Recently, earthquakes have been common. We get at least
a couple each week.
At least, that's how many I can feel.
People here are so used to them that they only notice the biggest ones. If
a ceiling tile comes down, someone might say, "Did you just feel
But I notice even the small ones.
It's not that I'm particularly sensitive. It's just my office.
It sits in the corner of the building, and has a lot of glass.
When there's a tremor, I can hear the glass rubbing at the joints Ė
Still, I don't worry much.
Some people do, so they prepare earthquake emergency kits. You always hear
about the need for a kit.
My wife has prepared one. It has her clothes, a blanket, food, and water.
I, on the other hand, don't have one. Why?
Well, I've never heard of a person who died because he didn't have
clothes, food, or water after an earthquake.
I don't want to sound like I'm making light of
Well, actually, I am. But that's how I deal with serious matters.
And I know that earthquakes can be serious.
We were living in Osaka, when the Great Hanshin
There was no question that it was a major event.
The sheer volume of the quake astounded me. It sounded like STOMP was
doing a live performance on our balcony.
When it ended, I looked at Angie and said, "I'm pretty sure of two
things. First, I won't be able to get to work today. Second, people
Unfortunately, I was right.
And it's just a matter of time before the next big one.
"Squeak, squeak". Maybe an emergency kit isnít
such a bad idea.