Michael Karlesky

A cabinet of wonders. Minus the cabinet. And possibly the wonders.

An earth shaking move

I come to New York and the earth moves. I'm not kidding. As you may have heard, there was an earthquake in Virginia on Tuesday. We felt it here. Actually, people on the ground didn't feel it here. People up in buildings felt it here. Like me. On the 4th floor. In my apartment. As it did the Cha-cha-cha. My beloved desk-and-bunk-bed had a nice rhythm going — must have been manufactured in a latin country with that Salsa vibe it had going.

A friend, Jonah, and his family from back home are on the East Coast visiting friends in New Jersey. This means I got to see them too. When the quake hit, Jonah was with me and thought it was the subway from the nearby station. I was fairly certain it was an earthquake. The radio in the car back at ground level told the story. Everything in New York, myself and Jonah and his family included, is fine. However, Washington, D.C. did not fare nearly so well.

After the excitement, we all headed over to the Brooklyn Children's Museum. Jonah and Heather and their friends took their kids. I went in the name of research. My findings are in the gallery.

After the museum I headed over to Manhattan to meet Alison Bryant, founder of Play Science Lab. Hilariously, Alison and I rode the metro right next to one another on our way to our appointed meeting place; she figured it out after we officially met (we were pointed different directions on the train — Alison saw me but I didn't see her). We had drinks and conversation at the wood and leather Library Bar at the Gild Hall Hotel.

On the walk to the subway on the Brooklyn side, I got to see some amazing Brooklyn neighborhoods. On the Manhattan side, on my way to meet Alison, I got to wind down through the very narrow, very cool, very old streets of lower Manhattan (upper Manhattan is the original, newfangled, grid system poster child of city planning).

After meeting Alison, I headed up to the Bronx to meet Jonah and Jésus again for a Yankees game. On the subway ride there, I got to ride next to documentary filmmaker Ken Burns. The Yankees are at the top of the division but managed to lose to the Oakland A's. That said, the game was totally worth the ticket price. The Yanks were asleep for most of the game but then woke up for an exciting last two innings. The game came down to a full count and a home run that wanted to be but just couldn't make it.

I keep getting asked which team I'm rooting for. The Yankees or the Mets. This is a big deal — like Michigan versus Michigan State back home. A defining pick. My joking retort of “that New York team” is not winning me fans of my own. I'm really taken with the history and tradition of the Yankees but not their uppity air. It's a tough call. Choosing poorly could rock my world worse than that earthquake.