A little over a week ago I was heading up to Manchester after work. In hindsight, I should have taken the new route 72 out to I-84, but it’s still sufficiently new that sometimes I forget that it’s there. Instead I headed south down route 229 to get to I-84. I got far enough to be committed, and the traffic just stopped. I figured it was probably typical rush hour, but as I got further I could see the flashing red and blue lights. There had been an accident just short of the traffic light. Here are the things I noticed in the order in which I noticed them (leaving out all the police cars and flashy lights):
1. A white panel van, with its nose comprehensively smashed in;
2. Something I’ll hold for the end – it’s the punch line;
3. A four door sedan being winched up onto a flatbed, with its trunk comprehensively smashed in and its nose slightly crunched;
4. A four door compact with its rear bumper slightly crunched;
2. (reprise) A queen or king sized mattress, draped across the nose and covering the windshield of the panel van. The box spring was still on the roof.
Clearly the panel van did not stop *nearly* in time, and smashed into the back of the sedan hard enough to push it forcefully into the compact car in front. I can even suppose that this all happened when the light turned red. But here’s the question:
Did the poorly tied on mattress come loose BECAUSE of the impact and slide down the windshield, or did the poorly tied on mattress come loose upon braking and CAUSE the impact? We’ll never know.
But I’d love to read the police report.