Quake-shakin’ and My Ego

In case I needed a wake up call about just how much the world doesn’t revolve around me …

I’m in the last days of a crazy grant application process at work.  The past ten months of planning are culminating in this final drive to the finish line of submitting a ginormous proposal before Labor Day.  To give myself some uninterrupted writing time, I took Tuesday afternoon out of the office and worked in a coffee shop.  When my insides began to vibrate, I got nervous but tried to convince myself nothing was happening.  I tried to pretend I wasn’t feeling anything.  I sat back in my chair … and felt the vibration even more strongly.  For about two seconds I wondered if anyone else might be feeling the weird shaky rocking I was feeling.  I looked around, but everyone else in the shop seemed just fine, so that confirmed my belief that whatever was happening was only happening to me.  I sat and tried to figure out what it could be.  Was I having a seizure?  Was it some kind of internal system shut-down?

Then the vibrating stopped … and I started trying to convince myself I’d imagined the whole thing.  Until everyone around me started talking  at once and I realized that, not only had I not imagined what I’d felt, everyone had felt it and that it had nothing to do with my health.

An earthquake?  Seriously?  With an epicenter in Virginia but felt that strongly here in Brooklyn?  Crazy business, that.  Truly.  I still can’t quite believe it.  In addition to disbelief, however, I’m also feeling a little sheepish … a seizure? an internal system shut-down?

So I’m actually that vain, that centered on myself that a 5.9 earthquake hits and I think it’s all about me?  I emailed this story to my brother and the laughed in his reply, said this was a perfect NYC story: everyone feels this obviously freakish, abnormal thing, but no one says anything because no one wants to be the crazy one!  I loved that.  Made me feel a little less vain, and also made me laugh.

Right now my hatches are battened and I’m locked up and dry at home while Hurricane Irene begins to introduce herself to my city.  It’s been an interesting week, natural disaster-wise!


4 thoughts on “Quake-shakin’ and My Ego

  1. You were at least removed enough from your own head to notice. I still wouldn’t know were all of NYC not speaking of it. But yes, it is very human to first look for the fault within (how apropos), before looking without. Here’s hoping Irene was as much of a blowhard for you as I.


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