Here's top tip for those of you who like to have the odd firearm around the house: Don't put live rounds wrapped in newspaper in your cast iron stove and then throw a match in.
That's exactly what Cory Davis, 56, of Sekiu in Washington state did. According to the Peninsula Daily News she'd "just finished stoking her cast-iron stove to heat her home when something inside it exploded".
Following a "loud bang", Davis took a hit on the inside of her left calf. She said: "I kept thinking, 'geeze that was one fast hot coal flying at me.' But it wasn't a coal."
It was, in fact, a .22 round* - one from a box which Davis had previously spilled and evidently not recaptured. She surmised the offending munition was "in newspaper she had used to light the stove".
Davis offered: "There's always that one problem stray. And of course, it got me."
Quite so. Davis herself removed a metal fragment from shallow wound, and subsequently presented herself at a local hospital where a doctor dressed the injury. The sawbones then contacted Clallam County Sheriff's Department, just in case Davis had conconcted the stove-shooting yarn to cover for a real gunshot wound.
The Peninsula Daily News does not suggest the authorities had any reason to doubt her story. ®
*The Peninsula Daily News describes the projectile as coming from "a 22-gauge shotgun shell". AP spoke to Davis, who corrected the error.
Thanks to Alex Cooper for the tip-off. He describes the trigger-happy stove as an evident Rise of the Machines incident, although it might be possible to categorise Davis as a Darwin Award nomination near miss. You decide.