Oddities — Earthquakes and No-Show Asteroids

November 8, 2020

Beyond any doubt, this year has been one for the record books. And just today, the continuing much-needed relief sense of sorts in knowing Joe Biden is the new president, and the horror-toad T-Rump is on his way out the door. Maybe the first respite from off all the shit spewed in 2020 so far; a nasty, deadly pandemic, and its terrible economic consequences, coupled with social unrest.
In considering bad years, this has been a different kind of bad year, a biting peculiar: ‘Sometimes when we say “worst” what we really mean is strange. This is a very strange year, and frightening in its unfamiliarity.’

Such as an earthquake in a weird-ass/not-normal place:

Odd at first glance, especially in this wonderous year of 2020 — via NPR:

A rare earthquake occurred off the coast of Massachusetts on Sunday morning, according to the U.S. Geological Survey, but no serious injuries or damage haas been reported.

The magnitude 3.6 earthquake hit around 9:10 a.m. local time, a few miles off the coast of New Bedford, Mass., in Buzzards Bay.

Residents across parts of Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island reported feeling the quake.

Paul Caruso, a geophysicist with the Geological Survey, told The New York Times that the agency does expect significant damage from the earthquake.

“Earthquakes in this area are commonly felt very far away because the rocks in this area are very contiguous, very old, so they transmit the energy very well from earthquakes,” Caruso said.

So rare, the last one in this category for the area was a magnitude 3.5 in March 1976. In California, we have several hundred a year above 3.0.

In that same vein, but instead of rocks moving in the ground, how about rocks moving in outer space?
A news item from weeks ago: A piece of outer-space rock was supposedly heading our way, scheduled to come close the day before the election — a small refrigerator-sized asteroid called 2018VP1, the “Election Day Asteroid.” Some excitement brewed then disappeared in the run-up to the election, and then in the anxiety fever the following three days has all but diappeared the deep impact excitement.
Reportedly, last Sunday 2018VP1 missed our planet by about a 10th of the distance to the Moon.
However, on Election Day, four other astroids circled earth ‘from a safe distance.’

Click on the tweety bird for details.
During a quick background/research on the ‘Election Day Astroid,’ I saw this at C/NET from last Monday: ‘Earth was never in danger from the asteroid, but its scheduled visit to our neighborhood fit in with the ongoing weirdness of a year filled with political strife and pandemic stress. It seems 2018 VP1 had the good sense to nope out of here from a safe distance away.’

And this, too via the Independent two weeks ago: ‘One unusual thing about the asteroid is that it has lined up with election day before. As its name indicates, it was first discovered in 2018 — on 3 November of that year, just three days before the midterms.’

Here we be, astroid free…or…

(Illustration out front found here).

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