Sunday, October 30, 2005


Yesterday I kinda sorta promised a nice, gracious, or amusing post for today. Don’t know if this qualifies, but it’s an interesting story.

A co-worker of mine told me of a Friday morning (four a.m.) experience that borders on the bizarre.

(Side note: I’m always careful with putting the hyphen in the word “co-worker” to avoid someone reading “cow worker” and thinking I’m talking about either a ranch hand in a Stetson, or a well-endowed female fellow employee. Sorry to throw that in, but it’s one of those weird things that occurs to me when I’m reading certain words. Carol says it ties in with my fondness for puns and my ability to make them out of thin air, seemingly.)

Anyway, Jay (yes, his real name) said he was awakened at 4 by a loud CRASH. He had no idea what it was or where it came from (inside or outside), but is sounded close and was loud enough that he came to in an instant, wide-eyed, sitting up in bed.

He heard nothing else. He threw back the covers (annoying his wife, who had not heard anything but was disturbed by his sudden movement in the bed) and leapt up, heading for the front door.

Jay lives in a small community just outside the fence of a large Formosa Plastics chemical plant. He tells me that the first thing people who live there do, when disturbed by night noises, is to go outside and look and listen towards the plant. That’s exactly what he did. There were no sirens, loud noises, flashing lights, or any other sign of unusual activity there.

He looked around the front yard, saw nothing unusual, and went back inside. Back in his bedroom he found a pane of glass from the front-facing window was shattered and in pieces on the floor. Right beside where he had run past, barefoot, on his way to the front door.

He carefully picked up the broken glass and looked at the outside screen. It was intact, so nothing had gone through it. Although it was a little earlier than his normal time to get up, he went through his morning routine and came to work.

Later, after daylight, his wife called to tell him that there was a black mark on their front vinyl siding, and the siding had a crack about 4 feet long from the mark.

Jay went home to look and found the black mark about 4 feet above ground level. A close look at the mark revealed a tire tread pattern. THEN he noticed, over on the edge of his front yard, a tire mounted in a wheel. Just lying there, innocent as could be. He hadn’t seen it earlier in the dark.

At this point in his story I asked him, “As in a car wheel? Maybe an airplane wheel?” I envisioned an overflying light aircraft with loose main-mount bolts. Hey, stranger things than that have happened!

He said, “No, just a standard spare that would fit a Chevy pickup.” (Remember, this is South Texas, where two out of every three vehicles on the road seems to be a pickup.)

His best guess is this: Down at the end of his block, he tells me, the road has a significant dip on one side. If a pickup came flying through there and hit that dip, it might bounce enough to flip an unsecured spare tire and wheel out of the bed. Said wheel would be moving at the same speed as the truck it came out of, and if it happened to hit just right it could easily bounce and roll down the block and whack the front of his house. With enough impact to crack his vinyl siding and break a pane out of a nearby window.

I told him he was lucky the tire didn’t hit the window, or it could have ended up in bed with him and his wife. Where it could have seriously injured or even killed one or both of them.

Pretty bizarre, huh?

But what’s really going to be interesting is the reaction of his homeowner’s insurance company when he files his claim.

“Your house was struck by what? Yeah, RIGHT!

Good luck with that one, Jay.

(NEW TOPIC:) Hey, Beautiful Vibe just put up a post on her blog. It's a good one! Check it out.


schnoodlepooh said...

That is a weird story. I would be totally freaked out if that happened to me!

sorry I've been a slaker in my blog reading lately. I promise to be better. I hope.

Mike said...

Thanks for comments and sorry to have planted that song in your head - it's still in mine 18 hours later. I had been pondering how to parody that song for about a month. Thanks to my puter freezing up, I got the brainstorm.
Good advice on the guitar posting.

kenju said...

I think if I were that guy, I would be putting bars on my windows on that side of the house! Strong bars!

Thanks for the link to the BV; I liked it.

kenju said...

John, thanks for the BD wishes. It is both a milestone - and just another number. When you feel 25 inside, it doesn't matter what the actual number is, does it?