We recently promised to name Washington's Kitsap County 'an area of outstanding natural stupidity' (AOONS) if it could reach a critical mass of firearms-related idiocy.
The Vulture Central critical mass required for an AOONS is three jaw-dropping tales of Darwin Award-worthy madness, and we're delighted to report that Kitsap has truly made the grade. Back in 2007, an unnamed 66-year-old from Southworth was repairing a Lincoln Continental, and decided the best way to remove a stubborn wheelnut was with a 12-gauge shotgun.
Blasting the intractable nut "from arm's length", he was "peppered with ricocheting buckshot and debris". Cue a visit to Tacoma General Hospital with "severe but not life-threatening injuries".
Earlier this month, Kitsap took one step closer to glory when the owner of a car-wrecking yard in Bainbridge Island blew up $80,000 of fireworks he was storing for Fourth of July celebrations.
An early-morning test of a new rifle proved ill-advised, when a ricochet flew off a scrapped car, penetrated a container packed with the incendiaries, and set off "the greatest fireworks show you ever would have wanted to not see".
Well, it didn't take long for reader Joseph Dougherty to provide the final piece of evidence needed for Kitsap's elevation to glory. Try this sad report on the nine-year-old lad who accidently shot his eight-year-old female classmate.
The gun apparently "discharged from the boy's backpack" at school. His parents are separated, and he allegedly "got the gun from his mother's boyfriend when he was visiting her".
Obviously, we're not suggesting the poor nipper himself is responsible for Kitsap's AOONS classification. That honour should go to his mum, for her outstanding parenting skills. ®