Given the sheer vastness of space, the odds against an individual bit of extraterrestrial debris coming anywhere near our planet are, well, astronomical. Yet, according to some estimates, several thousand tons of meteorites hit the earth each year—and a few chunks have managed to collide with some rather peculiar targets.
1. A Parked Chevy Malibu
Michelle Knapp’s insurance company refused to replace her daughter’s car after a 30-pound meteorite slammed into its trunk back in 1992, so she sold the unique vehicle for $69,000—more than enough to buy a new one.
2. A Canadian Fishing Boat
According to astronomer John S. Lewis, a meteorite slammed into a fishing boat off the coast of Newfoundland in 1936, setting the vessel ablaze in the process.
3. A Mailbox
Want to make $83,000? Getting your mailbox totaled by a falling space rock just might do the trick. An otherwise unremarkable model was auctioned off in 2007, 23 years after it was mangled by a meteorite that fell in Claxton, Georgia.
4. A Live Cow
“There was a strange noise … the next morning, we found that a cow had been killed by a stone that had presumably fallen from the sky the night before,” said Venezuelan farmer Juan Delgado of a fateful evening in 1972. The rock was later identified as a meteorite, while the cow’s charred remains were gobbled up over the next few days.
5. An Unfortunate Alabamian
Talk about a rude awakening! In 1954, Mrs. Elizabeth Hodges of Sylacauga, Alabama was roused from her nap by an 8.5 pound meteorite which tore through her roof, ricocheted off her radio, and slammed into her thigh, leaving a “pineapple-sized” welt.