raputreDespite the strange number of foreboding earthquakes the day before the much-anticipated “Rapture,” the end of the world turned out to be a pretty enjoyable Friday.

Unfortunately for most of us, since the world is still here, so are midterms. Darn it! Guess we still have to study. But with the rapture now behind us, our dear Yoshua is nowhere to be seen … as of now. Which begs the question, will he come back?

The Clog couldn’t snatch an interview with the spiritual herald, so we consulted the expertise of Dale Loepp, a Ph.D. candidate in Jewish Studies and a GSI for Religious Studies 90A.

The Clog: Why didn’t the rapture happen? read more »

falling debrisOkay now, what is it again?

Stop, drop and roll?

Stop, drop and run?

If you were one of the several cool kids who refused to participate in today’s earthquake drill when the sirens blared at 10:20 this morning, you may have just experienced a rude awakening from Mother Earth.

According to the U.S. Geological Survey, a 4.0 earthquake struck Berkeley at 2:41 p.m. today, Thursday, Oct. 20. The quake was centered below the Clark Kerr Campus. (In July, a 3.3 earthquake was located in the same area.)

So far,there are no reports of damage … other than ego.

While the tremor was pretty mild, this may just be a sign of read more »


Well, maybe it wasn’t that significant of an earthquake to don the exclamation point, and the seismograph above is that of an earthquake much stronger than what we experienced, but it still shook some of us out of bed.

At 3:51 a.m. on Saturday morning, the earth decided to rumble a bit with a 3.3 earthquake four miles underground centered about half a block west from UC Berkeley’s Clark Kerr Campus. Oh, were you unaware that the fairly noteworthy Hayward fault line runs directly underneath that side of Berkeley? Yea! Welcome to the Bay Area, out-of-state students.

The quake passed quickly and there were no reports of any damage.

We believe that this may have been the earth’s way of showing off its anger towards the UC Regents’ decision to increase tuition, but we can’t verify that at this time.

Image Source: macten under Creative Commons
Magnitude-3.3 quake strikes near Berkeley [sfgate]
Magnitude 3.3 San Francisco Bay Area, California [usgs.gov]

elmoMeet “earthquake safety Elmo.” He will save you from earthquakes in Japan. Or revive you with irritating laughter. We assume that’s what the Japanese above his head says.

Here in Berkeley, we get extravagant displays of emergency preparedness instead, ones meant to reassure us that we’re in good hands (even if they’re not fuzzy or red).

From 8 a.m. to 12 noon on Friday, expect mock victims, complete with labels and fake injuries, by Wurster and Stanley Halls. 2,500 randomly selected WarnMe subscribers will receive test messages. The campus’ public address system and sirens will go off. Police and fire department officials will be on scene. Madness and mayhem will (ideally) not ensue.

This year’s annual emergency drill theme is “Resilience 2011.” The mock scenario? An earthquake causes an explosion on campus, and everyone calmly and resiliently endures. Mock scenario, indeed …

Image source: kalavinka under Creative Commons
Emergency drill set for Friday [UCB Newscenter]

It was way more money than this.

Masayoshi Son is a Berkeley alumnus, as well as being the richest individual in Japan and the 113th richest person in the world. He also just donated more money than we’ll ever have to help the relief effort in his country.

Son is personally donating $119 million to help with emergency aid and other relief efforts and has said he will be donating his full salary from now until his retirement “to provide support to children orphaned by this disaster and the many other orphaned children.”

Image Source: elycefeliz under Creative Commons
Softbank’s Masayoshi Son giving $119 million to Japan quake victims [CBS News via Berkeleyside]


Because Berkeley is built right on top of a fault line, and is long overdue for an earthquake it is no big surprise that we hear a lot of talk about seismic activity safety measures and research.

A professor of Earth and Planetary science at UC Berkeley, Douglas Dreger, has been doing lots of research on just that topic (earthquakes, in case you forgot already), identifying how much damage is actually caused by the earthquake itself as opposed to earthquake-like events. Occurrences such as the shudders of a glacier, or the explosion of a nuclear bomb can move mountains though cannot technically be classified as earthquakes.

Dreger uses read more »

ZOMG, GUYZ WATCH OUT. What’s up Berkeley? Feeling masochistic? Great, so are we! Good thing we found this interactive map of campus buildings that shows you their seismic ratings.

According to California Watch, the UC system “still has 102 buildings rated as ‘poor’ and 10 as ‘very poor.’” And yeah, we get it, that’s not good and people should know what they’re walking into … literally. But still, we have to wonder why they couldn’t throw a single structure in there with a rating higher than “poor?” Not one “good” just for comparison’s sake? Just so we could breathe a sigh of relief walking through the doors of Wheeler Hall and know that we’ve made a good decision, if not in future employment opportunity then–at least–in seismic safety?

Throw us a freaking bone, here, California Watch! Because the feeling we get from interacting with this map is that everything is going to crumble under our feet at the first sign of a tremor. We couldn’t even seek refuge in the great, symbolic Campanile! Sad times.

And speaking of things that are going to crumble at the first sign of a tremor, watch out for the Greek Theatre. Just sayin’.

Image Source: Alan Wong/Staff, Daily Cal
MAP: Seismically hazardous buildings at UC Berkeley [California Watch]

earthquake UC Berkeley professor Richard Allen is helping to develop an earthquake warning system that could help give people a few seconds warning before an earthquake hits.

Now—given that we live in a ridiculously earthquake-prone area, read more »

We all know the apocalypse is upon us for our sinful, heathen ways. But just exactly how close are you to the fault that will unleash the Big One on the Bay Area? Hazards Awareness Map will tell you.

So friends who live at 2250 Prospect Street, in the case of an earthquake, you will probably die:

You are IN or NEAR the following:

* HIGH Ground Shaking
This map shows the potential level of ground shaking hazard from earthquakes that geologists and seismologists agree could occur in California. It takes into consideration the uncertainties in the size and location of earthquakes and the resulting ground motions that can affect a particular location. (more information at http://www.conservation.ca.gov/cgs/rghm/psha/index.htm)

read more »

* Once again, it’s proof that football rules the (college) world.

* Nothing compares to you. In other words: Love yourself. Yes, in that way too.

* In case of the Big One, let’s hope Sean Penn will rescue us from our Berkeley rubble.

* Looking for cheaper housing? Yet another “co-ops: which one?” discussion.

nothing compares [YouTube]
Earlier: Fun and Games and Loud Noise

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