Taking a break from creating the future apocalypse to comment on the present apocalypse:
The Bay Area has been surreal this week. I'm far south of the fires and not directly affected, but the entire region has filled up with smoke from the flames. Every time I step outside it smells like a campfire, and we've had surreal sunrises and sunsets that make me feel like I'm on an alien planet.
This region is usually very fortunate in that we're adjacent to the ocean and typical wind patterns help circulate in clear air, avoiding the bad pollution that plagues valleys in California. But the northern winds are a curse in this case, both for the spread of the fires and the subsequent spread of smoke. The air quality is as bad here now as it is on the worst days in Beijing.
For posterity, here are a few images of what things look like here and now. (None are my own photos, each links out to the source, but they line up with my own experiences over the past few days.)
Of course, we have it far better than our neighbors in the North Bay who have lost their homes, jobs, and loved ones. I'd appreciate it if you could keep them in your thoughts.