Friday, January 29, 2010

Self Fulfilling Prophecy

Joanne left the bistro with her husband and cell phone firmly in hand. She was flushed, giddy, and still anxious. Lunch was incredible! As soon as she was in the car, she grabbed her phone and texted the friend who would appreciate the news most. "I met him, Drea! HIM! John Paul Cusack at a bistro in Hollywood. Text me back for more details!" Joanne sat the phone on her lap and stomped her feet on the car floor. She beamed at her husband as he guided the car onto the entrance ramp for I10.

As they climbed the hill and merged with traffic, the ground began to shift. Slowly at first and then quicker. It took a few seconds for them to understand what was happening. Being from Wisconsin, they hadn't experienced an earthquake before. Her heart pounded dangerously against her ribs and she began holding her breath. Joanne grabbed her husband's hand and then door rest, her phone sliding off her lap. They were unprepared, not knowing what to do. She looked over the side of the guard rail and was relieved to see a very short distance to the ground below her.

As suddenly as it started, it stopped. She released her grip and her breath. They looked at one another, afraid to speak, and wondering how long before an aftershock appeared. Ahead of them, the traffic was slowly righting itself. Cars that were damaged worked their way to the shoulder. The majority of cars slowly worked their way back into a lane. An aftershock hit. It was far milder than the earthquake, but just as startling.

Half an hour later, traffic began to move at a slow clip. They didn't mind. It felt normal. Joanne and her husband followed suit. Joanne bent down to pick up her phone. "Sat through an earthquake. Watch the news." Traffic picked up. They were getting closer to the hotel on the beach. As they rounded the corner, she saw it towering. Her eyes followed it up, up, up. She watched it moving toward her. She reached for her phone and sent one short word to her friend. "God-bye." Then she kissed her husband.

The news reported the earthquake and resulting Tsunami on televisions across the world.


  1. Okay... fears expressed. Now, time for vacation!

    Well, maybe the first one would be okay.

  2. What??

    Is this something that had happened to yo and you day-dreamed it like the old lady in the hotel lounge? Or is this something from Katrina, you imagining what it would've felt like for a person going through that?

    The person in the car is the one who is going to die or did she see her friend going or did she know her friend is going/gone?

    This is scary and I don't want to be in that position.

    Are you okay?

    Now, go have a vacation and stop dreaming up this scary stuff already!!!!!

    How has your birthday gone so far?

  3. what does the self-fullfilling prophesy refer to?

  4. I just googled "california recent earthquakes" and found a few quakes that occurred within the last day. Speak up, woman!

  5. This is more of a silly inside joke with Vicki, expressed in writing.

    It hasn't happened to me or anyone that I know.

    The person in the car and all the people around her die. It's the nature of a tsunami. You can't really outrun them.

    A self fulfilling prophecy is having things come true that you have spoken about or thought about a lot. I joked with Vicki about meeting Cusack, living through an earthquake, and dying in a tsunami all while in California. So, this would be a self fulfilling prophecy. Except, in real life, I doubt any of these things will happen.

    The earthquakes weren't in this area to the best of my knowledge. Although I could have sworn I felt like I was swaying for about 5 seconds the other day.

  6. Ok I like it.

    A nice bit of fiction. Maybe I'll arrange for an earthquake for you when I take you to LA next time.

  7. I appreciate the offer Vicki, I really do. But the image in my head is threatening enough to last me a life time. I hope you understand why I am declining your generous offer.

  8. It's funny though I never while growing up heard talk of earthquake setting off tsunamis that would wipe out LA (or at that time they were called tidal waves)

    I lived through many earth quakes. I will admit that my family has been there for worse since I moved away. I though live with more fear of them then they do. I have felt quakes that they have not and have mistaken the semis driving by as quakes.

    And I wouldn't have you feel one.