A while back, I was invited to one of those neighborhood earthquake-preparedness meetings we have out here in the shaky state of California.I listened with interest as the homeowner who hosted the event described, with evident trepidation, her biggest earthquake fear: that the shaking would cause power lines to fall into the street in front of her home. What should she do in that event, and how could she escape? Now, this woman happened to be an artist -- a sculptor in clay -- and during this anxiety-ridden discussion over power lines, she was seated directly in front of a tall, spindly, sideboard completely laden from top to bottom with heavy pottery she'd made, including a huge platter that was precariously balanced on the very top.I pointed out to her that she was much more li...