Coping: With Peace, Quiet, and Earthquakes

Depending on your coffee load, you may (or may not) remember my mentioning last week that I had the “earthquake tireds.”

For whatever reason, I am one of those people who is very sensitive to earthquakes in advance.

I get terribly tired and all I want to do is go back to bed and sleep. Which is precisely what I did for a couple of hours Tuesday of last week.

Then I waited.

Usually a quake comes by within 72-hours, or so.

Not that it’s a bad thing, either, although admittedly, it’s not a terribly useful thing, either.

Maybe somewhere in the Ure family eons back there was a propensity to sleep before things got all haired and exciting. Or, maybe it’s just a misplaced effort to sleep through disaster.

Tuesday nothing happened.

Wednesday nothing happened.

But then we get to the odd part of the story on Thursday.

About 5:30 PM, Elaine and I hit the screen porch with a couple of adult beverages and Zeus the Cat.

Panama and Elaine had filled up the hummingbird feeder and there was the hummingbird version of the Battle of London being fought in the air around the feeder. At one point I counted 10 of them. More posturing and bluffing than any 10 senators, too. Quite the show.

So as we are sitting there, all of a sudden there was a short, sharp jolt.

“That was an earthquake,” I announced.

I then went into the kitchen and noted the time. It was 6:07 PM by now.

Going outside, I excused myself for a few minutes – convinced this was my ‘big earthquake” I thought surely there would be breaking news any second.

And I waited.

And waited…

Finally – and this is what gets odd – the news crossed on the USGS website that there had been a small quake in the hinterlands of Oklahoma.

M2.7 – 19km E of Waukomis, Oklahoma.

I tried to send them a note under the “I felt it” but I guess they either turn that off or auto expire the form after while.

Still, very interesting an several counts.

One is we live on the north side of a major petroleum formation/salt dome here north of Palestine, Texas. I don’t know if this would have anything to do with what we felt this one.

Second thing is the time: Looks like what we felt was 2-3 minutes after the time on the event on the USGS equipment. That would sort of suggest that whatever we felt went 100-200 miles per hour to get here.

It was noticeable, but not the kind of thing we would have paid any attention to if we were inside the house. We would have figured the A/C just went on, off, or whatever.

But when you’re outside, it’s really amazing how much more “in touch” you are with nature and the kind of things that you can pick up on.

In ancient China, the royal Court had a series of earthquake detectors that could pick up events like this at great distance. They used (going from memory here) a series of 8-12 marbles which we very delicately balanced, such that even the slightest ground movement would kick off the marbles from the direction of the quake.

By having two such observatories 50-100 miles apart, an approximate direction of a distant quake could be measured. Basic simple triangulation.

In those days, it would sometimes get the report a week or two before reports from distant provinces arrived.

In our case, no biggie, but certainly one of those “Aha!” moments as it went by.

Still don’t know if that’s what set of the “earthquake tireds” but there’s the data, and we did feel a quake here, small or not.

If we ever move, we will not be selecting a homestead on the side of a salt dome/petroleum formation, by the way.

Climate Change and Travel

I mentioned last week that we might begin to see some cruise ship bargains as people are slowly wakening to the idea that Zika virus could be a real problem in the US.

This weekend saw more ground spraying in South Florida. And there are starting to be jitters about what that might do to tourism.

Just so you’re aware, September and October are generally “soft” travel times anyway: The kiddies are back in school (looking for purple unicorns or whatever) and the alleged grown-ups are back at work, or if retired, we are just coming into the time of year when even the snowbirds don’t have an incentive to get out and travel much.

We’ve been eyeing a cruise down the Eastern Caribbean…and if you’re interested in us putting together an UrbanSurvival/Peoplenomics cruise, drop something onto the comment side.

On other travel adventures, we have been eyeing a trip down to Louisiana to check things out – over flight in the air machine. I noticed last week when I topped off that the fuel price was down to $3.95 for AvGas. And some of the places around us – Rusk (*KRFI) for example – was showing fuel priced at $3.19 for self-serve.

If the weather is good this weekend, we might try a run up to visit the Landry’s in Oklahoma although fuel up there was $3.87 this weekend.

And we also have a trip out West in our sights since the summer has turned decidedly chilly in the Phoenix area. The summer Monsoon Season had dropped temps to the very low 100’s which (going my memory here) is about 10-degrees cooler than normal.

The old used airplane is still less than half the price of a new car and goes more than twice as fast. Plus, insurance is still just $552 per year and that’s with million dollar liability. Try getting that on a car.

If we slow down (to 110 MPH or so) the old Beech will turn in a so-so 8 gallons per hour. Almost 14 miles per gallon. Drops down to about 12 MPH going faster.

Then there’s the travel impact of local weather. 7-inches of rain have landed at the ranch in the time since we got home from our road trip. Nothing compared to things over in the parishes, but enough to cause an explosion in grass growth. We may need a machete to get the mail, or bush hog our way out and hope we can still pick up a trail on the way back. (Yes, Texas people embellish things, but just a bit.)

That will mean large herds of cattle around here and up north of us. And that means for the next year, or two, we should continue to see reasonable beef prices.

The way I have it figured (and I got up early to work this all through…):

The Monsoons came through strong this year.

That grows the grass.

The grass grows the cattle.

The cattle fart.

That causes more climate change.

That in turn (or turd) causes more climate scares.

And that, my friend, is why I am trying to do my part to fight climate change by pricing steak and eggs into two breakfasts per week.

Why, turning over and becoming an environmentalist (which we are by virtual of running a tree farm and operating a “solar powered” website and all) may not be such a bad thing after all.

Tell Al Gore, if you see him, the prime rib’s on us.

We environmentally sensible people have to stick together, you know. Maybe I could set up a global bullshit exchange…I know we’d have a lot to talk about.

Did I tell you I have plans for ethanol-added wine?

Write when you get rich,


Coping: With Peace, Quiet, and Earthquakes — 16 Comments

  1. Spending a week or two on a slow moving prison to a place that sells worthless trinkets is a waste of life. You can keep the cruise George.

    On second thought, there’s the food, gambling, food, drinking, food, drinking, gambling, food, idiotic vaudeville shows, pretentious food with the captain, drinking, dancing, food, drinking. Ahem! … Like I said, a waste of life.

  2. George ,
    Noticed that your are feeding hummingbirds same as us. However, we have managed to get on the Hummingbird Triple A list. We currently have 15 of the 6 station feeders out and are filling them 3 times a day. That works out, based on some formula my wife discovered, to around 1300 birds at the lunch counter at my house. Little buggers are going through about 25 pounds of sugar a week, but give it 3 more weeks and they will be heading south from Tennessee. Makes me sad to see them go, because I know winter is not far behind. Hard to keep prepping supplies up with hummingbirds eating all the sugar.


  3. You might want to rethink your heavy-on-the-beef diet if you’re allergic to penicillin and/or other antibiotics. About six weeks ago I started breaking out in an itchy rash on various portions of my body and nothing I tried would quell it. I went into my process-of-elimination mode and kept asking myself “What is this similar to that’s happened before?” and “What’s different now than it was before this started?”

    Eventually I realized it was similar to what happened when I first discovered I was allergic to penicillin, and what was different was the Angus burgers from Costco that I’d been eating three or four of per week. Makes sense if the feedlots are crowded, there’d be more antibiotics in the feed in order to keep the critters “healthy” until they meet their destiny. I backed off the burgers and the situation has slowly been rectifying, but I’m once again hyper-sensitive to antibiotic stimulus, so it’s going to take awhile to be itch-free.


  4. There’s an old astrological “equation”: Eclipse + Triggering Planet = Quake and/or Political Upheaval. We may see some heavy duty quakes a year from now after the August 21, 2017 total eclipse of the Sun is in full visibility as it travels across the U.S., followed less than a week later by Mars transiting over the eclipse point @ 28-29 deg Leo. See more on the path of the eclipse here:

    What is particularly important is that the path crosses over or very near some of the critical earth change points in the US: It will pass over the Juan de Fuca fault line in Oregon, cross close to Yellowstone and its dangerous cauldron, then on to New Madrid and finally exit the US at Charleston NC, site of an historic 1886 7.3 quake, which has been called the most destructive quake in the East Coast. Of course the New Madrid quake of 1811-12 was even larger and caused more damage…and is overdue.

    Because the eclipse is also conjunct the fixed star Regulus, [“the King”] many astrologers will also be talking about the eclipse being a sign of important changes in world leadership. These changes may be caused by death, revolution, or retirement. Of note: one of the astrological birth charts proposed for Trump gives his Ascendant as 29 deg Leo, the location of both Regulus and the August 2017 total eclipse. If the chart is valid, he will certainly experience important changes in his life, regardless of this year’s election outcome.

    Keep an eye out for articles over the coming year discussing all the possibilities this eclipse may portend. We live in interesting times!

  5. Just because they are “spraying for Zika” doesn’t mean it is a real deal. It’s the old Hegelian dialectic. The spraying of DDT for polio caused more people to have paralytic symptoms, which were the physiological and symptomatic manifestations of the ongoing government and industry sponsored inundation of the world’s populace with central nervous system poisons. Now we will have the populace coming down with symptoms of poisoning from the Naled used in the Zika spraying. Another nerve agent brought to us by the Germans in WW2.

  6. Did you know that that that there is a rather significant fault line that runs north to south, starting at the south end of Tyler, Texas? (Along/west of hwy. 110 south) No one will talk about this unless you know a realtor who will tell you about how many houses in that area have badly shifted
    foundations due to tremors(reported to the real estate agent)…and Austin, of course,has the well known Balcones Fault and several others ; some run through the middle of downtown! …fasten yer seat belts!!!

  7. I’m down for a urban survival cruise (I suppose that would be considered urbanely surviving).

  8. Tuesday was a down day for me as well George. Couldn’t figure it out. I was dopey all day but couldn’t take a nap since I was babysitting. Finally took the granddaughter in to the wife for an appointment and had to go back to the house for a nap. Had trouble keeping the car in the lines I was so messed up. Didn’t get to bed as early the night before but this was way out of line for not enough sleep. The nap helped a little but didn’t feel fully up to par till late Wednesday. Then Thursday evening we heard a boom down here around San Angelo that had a small concussive component to it. We waited to see if anyone posted something on FarceBook but nothing showed up so we were left wondering WTH was that? A meteor or something? Glad you sent some possible insight our way. We actually thought the gas plant lit up nearby.

  9. The number of earthquakes 4.5 or higher in the last seven days is at 99 at the moment. It usually averages around the high 70’s.

  10. Not surprised about your sensitivity or the quake. I live in Austin, one morning, I had a vivid dream of an earthquake. I was lying in bed, it was early morning, it rattled the headboard on the bed, the bed and house shook. It was a big one, not just a jolt. I was holding on to the headboard for dear life in the dream. NEVER had a dream about an earthquake before or since.

  11. Hi George, we enjoy cruising, do 2 a year. We are leaving Oct. 1st, drive to Utah, then fly with our friends (retired special forces) to Boston, 2 days touring historical sights then board the ship for an east coast cruise. Our favorite cruise is Princess’s 15 day’s to Hawaii out of L.A. but also enjoyed the 15 day Panama cruise.
    If you put together a cruise, we would entertain going.

    Best regards