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If I've told this tale here before, please forgive... In 1980-something my girlfriend (now my wife) & I went out New Year's Eve to the Starry Plough in Oakland, California to dance to the gumbo-flavored rock&roll of Juke Joint Johnny & The Hot Links. After we'd been dancing long enough to get hot & sweaty, I suggested that we go make out in her VW bug, parked on the street about half-a-block away. She wanted to dance some more first, so we kept on dancing. When we finally went out to her car we discovered that the rear windshield glass had shattered into a thousand fragments, & we found a bullet (a .38-caliber, I think, but what do I know) lodged in the lower edge of the frame.

When we pried out the bullet & took it to the cops the next day, they were interested at first, then became evasive as soon as they saw it. It was a police bullet; evidently they'd had a shootout with somebody outside the club. Or maybe the cops were just firing guns for the hell of it. The band was so loud, nobody inside heard a thing. If we had been making out in the car, our weight would have lowered the windshield frame just enough for that bullet to have penetrated the glass & hit one of us. ('Coz in a VW bug there's not enough room to get horizontal.) Happy New Year!
 

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Ironically, when playing a NYE gig and having to drive home at the worst possible time, I would stay completely sober, not even one drink, which was kind of difficult. But if I got pulled over or caught in a roadblock I wanted to be able to tell the officer that I was coming home from 'work' (the gig) and didn't drink that night. The statement "I only had one beer" will surely result in the response "step out of the car", followed by a sobriety test.
I've always been told to never say I only had a beer or anything like that. Always say I didn't drink even if it's not true. Your odds are always better that way,
 

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I spent NYE playing online poker with my regular poker group of friends, the Coastal Bluffers. Then at midnight I spent it lying on the bathroom floor comforting my dog which is where she goes when the fireworks go off and she's terrified.
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
On the ballistics of shooting up into the air; the bullet shot pretty much straight up will lose its velocity and begin to fall. However, it does not lose its spin because the air resistance to a smooth object spinning is nil. So, it remains a ballistic object and falls point-first. The maximum velocity by gravity at sea-level air density is about 200 mph, which especially on the heavier 'centerfire' bullets is sufficient to cause injury or even death with a head impact.
Bullets fired more to the horizontal, say about 45 degrees, can retain much more of their initial velocity and a pistol can fire a bullet over a mile.
Bottom line, you don't want to be out ion the open when this is going on.
 
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