Work and life continue. Over here in the comfortable heat and air-conditioned blanket we missed out on the most recent set of London riots; and for the first time in my life I’m quite glad they vanished. Even from here we were genuinely concerned for the well-being of friends and family back there in the face of the mass anger and frustration. Topic-change.

Today I experienced my first earthquake.
The new office occupies the 3X floor of a high-rise block in Center City Philadelphia (genuine Philadelphia, not the one being reconstructed in Glasgow at the moment). In the early afternoon I started getting irritated with all of the fat blokes stomping around my desk, making the floor shake. I looked around to see who the culprits were, but all I could observe was a crowd of slightly nervous looking people. The floor was still undulating. For a split second the idea that the floor below was hosting the Obese Aerobic Olympics came to mind, but was quickly extinguished by the look of fear and confusion on the faces of most people within viewing distance. Someone exclaimed “Earthquake!” which had a mixed reaction. Some people decided to go for the lifts, some chose the OSHA-safe option of the stairs, but the majority of us stayed put, recognising a fruitless situation when we saw one. After a short while the undulation of the floor calmed down, which led to a common calm. The tech-support team continued asking the users at the end of the phone “if it was plugged in” and we all went back to normal. It turns out to have been a big quake – even if not in magnitude then in geological reach.
It’s good to let nature remind you how insignificant you are once in a while.

After work I accidentally went to the Apple Store and bought myself a new MacBook Pro, on which I’m typing at this moment. Buying things in the Apple Store is a surprisingly, or perhaps disturbingly, simple task. Sadly, it is ultimately rewarding. The two events of the purchase and earthquake are probably unrelated, but frankly I don’t care because it feels like using a machine that was built to integrate directly with my brain and body.

The old 2006 MacBook is not ready for the knackers yard yet either – but it’s a tad underpowered for Xcode 4. He will continue to live happily.

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