Green Gabbro

This morning, the California Supreme Court will announce its decision on whether or not a slim 50% majority can amend the state constitution in order to specifically deny a previously-recognized constitutional right. It will also determine the fate of the 18,000 same-sex marriages performed last year, between the state Supreme Court’s decision that same-sex marriage was a constitutional right in California, and the passage of Proposition 8. The New York Times quotes one man whose marriage is currently in legal limbo:

?The 18,000 marriages will be evidence that California is not going to fall apart if gay people get married,? Mr. Lok said. ?It?s not like there?s not going to be an earthquake.?

Oh ho ho, won’t Mr. Lok and his husband be chuckling at that one when San Francisco falls into the ocean! In fact, the potential link between same-sex marriage and earthquakes is one of the strongest arguments I’ve ever seen in favor of preserving the traditional-except-for-all-the-ways-we’ve-changed-it-in-the-past institution of opposite-sex-only marriage.

While the observation that same-sex marriage might be followed by earthquakes has been made before – notably by Israeli parliamentarian Shlomo Benizri and American preacher Pat Robertson – science has advanced beyond the simple “God does it” explanations most commonly proposed by nutcase conservative public figures. Below the fold, I will tell you how we actually think this process works.

The Castro district in San Francisco is constantly emitting small pulses of gay energy, called Love waves. These Love waves usually pass harmlessly through the crust, causing only occasional dirty thoughts in sensitive individuals.


Each time that a committed same-sex couple’s family bond is recognized and supported by the government, another pulse of gay energy is emitted from the relevant bureau. If this recognition occurs in the form of marriage, the pulse is strengthened, by a factor of approximately 31, through a complicated resonance of the couple’s wedding rings with their official marriage license (the exact multiplier varies depending on the font chosen by each county registrar, but it’s usually Helvetica).


Under normal conditions, these Love waves would also dissipate harmlessly in the crust. However, due to California’s unique geographic and geological conditions, the pulses emitted from state offices in Sacramento combine with the Love waves coming from the Castro in a phenomenon known as constructive interference. This interaction creates a pattern of standing Love waves in the soft sediments of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta:


At the constructively interfering nodes between San Francisco and Sacramento, gay energy is strong enough to penetrate the crust all the way to the seismogenic zone. The effects of this penetration on the seismogenic zone are governed by lubrication theory. Suffice it to say, when enough gay energy lubricates the underlying faults, California will be doomed – maybe not immediately after same-sex marriage is finally legalized for good, but definitely on or after April 15 the following year. Nothing emits pulses of pure gay energy more efficiently than a joint tax return.

(NB: Small numbers of same-sex marriages, typically involving a transgendered spouse whose legal gender is or was different from his/her preferred or identified gender, have been legally recognized even when same-sex marriage generally has not been. These marriages still cause Love waves to be emitted from Sacramento, but their effects have thus far been lost in the noise of ordinary tectonic and heterosexual seismicity. However, the effects of sub-seismogenic quantities of gay energy on the water in the delta – which is an important source of drinking water for Southern California – have not been studied.)


  1. #1 Ketil Tveiten
    May 26, 2009


  2. #2 NJ
    May 26, 2009

    Hmmmm….I guess this accounts for the Love and Ray-Lay waves then…

    (Yes, I DO know how to spell Rayleigh properly)

  3. #3 Cherish
    May 26, 2009

    While I admit that southern California may not emit gay energy at the same level as the Castro district, I would assume any constructive interference would happen near Parkfield. Does lack of gay marriage explain the delay in the expected seismicity there?

  4. #4 The Science Pundit
    May 26, 2009

    This explains so much. 🙂

  5. #5 Cannonball Jones
    May 26, 2009

    Couldn’t we somehow weaponise this? For example by persuading countries surrounding our current target du jour to temporarily legalise gay marriage, thus causing untold chaos in the lands of our heathen enemies?

  6. #6 Britomart
    May 26, 2009

    So when is Boston going to get another earthquake?

    We actually did have one here in 1775.It wasn’t very big but one the same magnitude now would make a big mess as we are not building for it.


  7. #7 Kim Hannula
    May 26, 2009

    So, what would be the test of this model? Let’s see… in Vermont, the Champlain Thrust isn’t between Montpelier and Burlington, so maybe it wouldn’t be predicted to be reactivated. And in Maine, the Norumbega Fault is along the coast. Would destination weddings on Mount Desert Island make it slip?

    And I wonder what’s going to happen along my personal favorite New England boundary, the one between New Hampshire and Vermont, once the NH governor signs the marriage equality bill. Could get exciting.

    And does this mean Iowa’s going to fall into the ocean?

  8. #8 Eric Lund
    May 26, 2009

    And I wonder what’s going to happen along my personal favorite New England boundary, the one between New Hampshire and Vermont, once the NH governor signs the marriage equality bill. Could get exciting.

    I’d keep an eye on the boundary between the coastal plain and the Fitchburg pluton. Anybody living along a line running from Salem to Rochester, check that your earthquake insurance is up to date.

    And does this mean Iowa’s going to fall into the ocean?

    Negative. Nebraska and South Dakota suck just enough to ensure this doesn’t happen.

  9. #9 BrianR
    May 26, 2009

    The standing love waves in the delta are a phenomenon worthy of further study!

    Speaking of arguments against same-sex marriage, check out this one from a triple-divorced nutbar with an Oedipus complex … very convincing –

  10. #10 Kate Sherrod
    May 26, 2009

    Oh, so *that’s* why my state keeps trying to float an amendment/legislative measure to ban gay marriage. All this time I thought it was just bigoted haters but really it’s to keep Yellowstone from blowing up!

  11. #11 Maharet
    May 26, 2009

    Oh, man. That makes so much *sense*. Thank you for clearing up this very serious issue.

    Nothing emits pulses of pure gay energy more efficiently than a joint tax return. Major win!

  12. #12 Julian
    May 26, 2009

    You just made my morning. Brilliant!

  13. #13 natural cynic
    May 26, 2009

    This could be a boon to my parents, who live up a small hill in Fairfield. Soon their property will become more valuable since it will be so close to the waterfront after the subsidence of all the flat lands near the delta.

  14. #14 AlexL
    May 26, 2009

    This is the highlight of my day, thank you!

  15. #15 PandyPaws
    May 26, 2009

    Laughing through my anger.

  16. #16 Joe Decker
    May 27, 2009

    Funniest. EVAR.

  17. #17 Sarah Laurenson
    May 28, 2009

    Too, too funny. As one of the 18,000, my wife and I salute your fantastic sense of humor!

  18. #18 Phyl
    May 28, 2009

    And now — please — you *must* analyze the Canadian situation and tell us when we can expect to sink into the Arctic Ocean. We must be so close to the disaster by now, after several years of equal marriage all over the country!

    Is it the Canadian Shield that’s saving us so far? Has it now developed cracks that will make it shatter at any moment?

    Please help us discover how much time we’ve got left!!1!

  19. #19 Duke & Banner
    May 31, 2009

    That’s funny!

  20. #20 old_guy
    June 3, 2009

    The danger is far greater than that: Piss-off-the-homophobes waves travel faster and farther.

    They also pack more punch – compare the ratios of group to phase velocity.

  21. #21 Susan
    June 3, 2009

    LOVE it! That is some brilliant writing and logic! LOL

  22. #22 Right Wing Extremist
    June 6, 2009

    I think it’s not only gay “marriage” (sic) that going to cause California to fall into the ocean, but it’s long list of socialist actions. Right now there is little difference between Calirfornia and Cuba. California is under mountains of debt but only becuase of social welfare programs going out of control, but other massive spending such as making the state more “green”. I could take California’s budget and get it right in three months or less – cut all the environmental crap and all of the socialist crap and there will be money left to spend on important things.

    California is by far the most left wing state in the union and as long as it stays this way, it will not prosper.

    People are leaving that state to seek freedom from sky high taxes and unecessary spending sprees from the state. I don;t blame them. The deep south looks good about now. At least it’s still conservative and still gay marriage free. When California slides into the Pacific I will not be surpised at all.

    God may judge the whole country not just California if we continue on the path to destruction and sin as we are doing at such a massive scale now. He would be right to do so. We deserve it.

  23. #23 Right Wing Extremist
    June 6, 2009

    Nothing emits pulses of pure gay energy more efficiently than a joint tax return. Major win!”


    At last the truth comes out. The whole gay unionism (it’s not really marriage unless it is ordained by God) is all about money eh?

    Major win.

  24. #24 Hannah
    June 12, 2009

    You used the phrase: “effects of this penetration on the seismogenic zone are governed by lubrication theory” in what was *supposed* to be a family-friendly science blog. We’re all going straight to Helvetica!

  25. #25 jas
    July 18, 2009

    wat crap

  26. #26 andy@energywatcher
    August 20, 2009

    Superbly written piece, really cheered me up on this rather dull day here in the UK!

  27. #27 Anna
    September 10, 2009

    wow. just wow. so awesome!!!

  28. #28 fragileindustries
    September 10, 2009

    Thanks, I’m sending this to all my friends in the Castro … and general Bay Area … and … uh … the world. We are everywhere! Global cataclysm here I come!

  29. #29 ash
    October 21, 2009

    Now I can feel the wave

  30. #30 Katherine
    November 19, 2009

    Love this! Thanks for the laughs.

  31. #31 Veerle
    November 22, 2009

    Haha, it’s really funny! And it sounds logical, too! Me and my brother used this article for a science project. We had to combine ‘sex’ and ‘earthquakes’ and then we found this. It’s wonderful!

    I’m glad Holland does not lie on soft seismic sediments. We will probably only have a flood. ^^

  32. #32 Mike
    January 22, 2010

    Haha ooh this person is such an asshole… But I have to admit, it was funny to read this even though it’s completely wrong and despite the fact that I want to find the person and bash their face in with a steel dildo, I’ll be fine. ;P

  33. #33 Ren
    March 2, 2010

    Nothin’ but a bunch a pure, unadulterated SUBDUCTION and THRUST if ya ask me!!! :)) Best model I ever saw. Thanks for enlightening us all. You made my day!! :))

  34. #34 Ren
    March 2, 2010

    And…. what about the harmonic tremors and standing waves building between Vancouver, B.C. and Seattle right now? I expect a 600-mile-long rupture along the full length of the Juan de FUUUUca plate any day now. Wasn’t that a 9.5 last time it happened 300 years ago? YEE HAW!! You should have seen that LOVE tsunami!! And where was gay marriage then???

  35. #35 Brad
    July 24, 2010

    I love it. Just as absurd as every other argument against gay marriage. It’s interesting how people often choose to live in places with historically “anti-human” geology.

  36. #36 wangzhongliang
    September 16, 2010

    very funny!

  37. #37 Hoyle McCain
    October 27, 2010

    The gay love waves only contribute to the seismic instability. The homophobe foot stomping when they hear about or actually SEE a same sex couple or a rainbow bumper sticker is what actually causes the tectonic slippage. I live in Memphis and we have to limit our homosexual relations due to our close proximity to the New Madrid Fault that has been known to cause the Mississippi River to run backwards for a whole day. The Corp of Engineers is working closely with the Memphis Gay Lesbian Associate to TIME SS marriages in batches large enough to cause the river to run backwards when needed to free grounded barges that tend to hang on the sandbars just north of Memphis. Of course the project is on hold, pending approval for Same Sex Marriages to become legal or at least a temporary waiver from the governor to conduct the experimental phases of this project.

  38. #38 N/a
    December 8, 2010

    Greatest thing i’ve ever heard. This has truly made my day, possibly week :p

  39. #39 Thonia
    August 11, 2011

    this is so funny, and creazy as well. lol

  40. #40 Alexander Babb
    August 24, 2011

    OMG for you people that actually agree with this idiot are even more idiots. I am gay and live my life as a homosexual and been married for going on 3 years. So your telling me that since I got married three years ago my marriage caused the earthquake in Virginia today? Your complete idiots.

  41. #41 john
    August 24, 2011

    Is it possible to create a new and highly secretive government agency that will be comprised of married gay couples? The combined Gay Energy, within a government agency, should theoretically become a Super-Weapon! Just have to learn how to harness, construct and focus it. We could destroy countries, wait a minute, we already have this agency; Congress.

  42. #42 Anonymous
    November 28, 2011


New comments have been disabled.