Archive for August 17th, 2010

Stray bullet was “isolated” incident. How about this one?

August 17, 2010

Last weekend the Minister for Sports Hector Rodriguez (There is such a Ministry?) said with respect to the stray bullet that hit Hong Kong’s player during a game of the Womens Baseball Tournament taking place in Caracas. The touranment is being played within a military facility, the safest” of them all, Fuerte Tiuna:

“It was an isolated incident, so says the technical report”

Well, I live in one of Caracas less dangerous areas. There is a barrio next door, but it is relatively safer than most of the city. Despite this, the picture below shows another “isolated” incident which fortunately ended well a couple of years ago.

As you can see, a bullet hit my glass window. This isolated incident was such that obviously the bullet had lost momentum and was not even able to penetrate the glass. But I would not mind Minister Rodriguez sending his technical team to determine whether my incident was also isolated or not.

I imagine the technical report that the Minister is referring for the incident of the baseball player, goes something like this:

“We use the Drake Equation as applied to the number of possible civilizations in the Universe with whom we may communicate, but applied to stray bullets (CICPC Report # 3.1415)

N = R^{\ast} \times f_p \times n_e \times f_{\ell} \times f_i \times f_c \times L \!

Where N is the number of bullets that hit someone, R* is the average number of bullets in the air at any given time, fp is the fraction of those bullets flying at or below eye level, ne is the number of people out in the streets at that time, fl is a coefficient which depends on the  the time of day, fi is the fraction of bullets that reach the target at a speed capable of killing someone, fc is the safety of the area of Caracas and L is whether you are in a military facility or not.

Using CICPC Handbook of Data Tables # 2.718288 for all of the parameters, we conclude that this is an isolated incident”

There you have it, for all of you skeptics. It’s a formula, it’s mathematical, it’s isolated.

As simple as that.

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