Ballistic Ice

June 02, 2005

This morning on my daily commute I was unintentionally shelled by ballistic ice. While traveling at about 70 MPH in the left lane of I-435, following an unremarkable late model American sedan (license plate 177 WWM) I observed the driver toss something out the window. Upon later reflection I decided what I had seen was him emptying a cup of its ice.

Immediately after seeing the tossing motion out of his window I saw an object in the air, arching directly towards my windshield. Directly towards me as a matter of fact. Just as I started to swerve towards the shoulder, this small mass (maybe golf ball size?) smacked into the glass with a terrific impact. It was the loudest sound I've ever heard in my car. That the windshield didn't shatter into a million pieces amazes me.

When I arrived at my parking lot a few minutes later, after debating with myself about following the car responsible for the shelling and deciding discretion was truly the better part of valor, I was further amazed that there wasn't even a chip in the window where the impact had occurred.

Good thing this didn't happen in Florida where, thanks to a new law endorsed by the NRA, I can now defend myself from attack via my handgun without first attempting to flee. There I could have returned fire, claiming that I'd felt "threatened."

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Mark H. Nichols

I am a husband, cellist, code prole, nerd, technologist, and all around good guy living and working in fly-over country. You should follow me on Twitter.