Posted 04/20/2013 18:00:00

Oklahoma has had an unusually large amount of seismic activity over the past couple of years, peaking with a 5.6 magnitude earthquake in 2011. The first time I felt an earthquake here, I absentmindedly thought to myself that the coal mines must be blasting again (a natural thought to someone who grew up in the Appalachians, a mile or so from an active coal mine. It took me a moment to realize I was in Oklahoma, nowhere near a strip mine, and what I had felt was actually an earthquake.

One of the students in a lab section I taught once listed "an earthquake might have happened" as an experimental error in his lab report. I marked it wrong, with a sarcastic comment about this not being California. This was before I had actually experienced an earthquake here. If I got another student giving a similar comment on their lab report, however, I'd still mark it wrong, but I might leave out the sarcastic comment.

The title for this comic comes from a meme that circulated around the Internet after the 2011 earthquake. There actually was some effect from the 2011 earthquake in the physics department: it damaged the pendulum in the physics building when some ceiling tiles fell on it. Plus, it misaligned my MOT. Stupid earthquakes.