We’re not “earthquake people” ’round these parts. Things start shaking, and earthquake is not necessarily the first thing we’re going to be thinking of.
Here was my thought process at 1:51 p.m., experienced at a downtown tavern with half a club sandwich in my mouth: Whoa, is this an earthquake? No, we’re in D.C., this can’t be an earthquake. Oh, god, it’s a bomb. I’m two blocks from the White House. Definitely a bomb. Wait, no, the building still has windows — not a bomb. Is there a really big truck driving by? No truck is that big. Wait, it’s been shaking for a good five seconds now. This is an earthquake. Whoa.
Some other reactions gathered by myself and Post colleagues:
— “The house began to rumble, like when you hear a large truck rolling by.”
— “At first I thought it was people running through the building. Like a bunch of adults running down the hall.”
— “We thought someone was banging on the cubicle beside us.”
— “I thought someone was rolling something heavy in the building.”
— Person working out thought she “threw the barbell down too hard.”
But over and over again, my colleagues and I heard people say they thought it was bomb or some other sort of explosion. Behold the post-9/11 collective psyche.
So what were you thinking? Tweet to the #quakereaction hashtag and I’ll update here.
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