There was a mid-size quake reportedly felt in Tokyo a couple days ago. The epicenter was out to sea, and so there wasn't a lot of damage.
And then there was Cyclone Nargis in Myanmar. And now the big quake in China. The reports I've seen said a 7.8.
Loma Prieta was something like 6.8 to 7.1. And the Northridge Quake was something like 6.7. Since the Richter scale is logarithmic, a 7.8 is ten times the energy as a 6.8. My mind boggles.
Times like this, teaching writing, Shakespeare, the liberal arts, all seems pretty useless to me. Planting trees feels useless, too. It all feels useless.
I've been thinking about getting a dog when I get home. I'm worried about the time I spend at the office, time when the dog would be alone at the house, and the time I spend out biking. Well, and, to be honest, wanting to travel without having to find someone to dogsit. And worrying about the whole resource issue. (I'm guessing my old dog had a pretty serious carbon footprint, if I think about how far his food was probably shipped and stuff. I bet he had a greater carbon footprint in his short life than a lot of folks living in the third world.)
Still, purely selfishly, I'm thinking about getting a dog. I like being part of a pack, even if it's a pack of two.
If I were half the person my dog thought I was, I'd be a pretty amazing person.
I got my incentive check, the one we're supposed to spend on consumer goods so that we can support the economy. I'm trying to decide between Planned Parenthood and the local food bank. Both organizations do good work, and both can always use the money.
I can't give blood until late January, I think. It's weird, maybe, but giving blood seems like at least an attempt to do something meaninigful. When I got back from the Peace Corps, I couldn't give for five years because of the malarial prophylaxis. But now it's supposedly a year for visiting a malaria area. (Assuming I don't come down with a surprise case of malaria, of course. I didn't do the prophylaxis thing for my short visit to low risk places, but I did smear DEET all over myself, and slept in netted rooms and such.)