I had just put the caserole dish into the oven and started clearing up the work area. Picking up some knives that needed washing, I placed them in the measuring jug to reduce the space they were taking up.
As soon as the knives touched the bottom of the jug, it exploded into tiny pieces!
No force was used, in fact seconds/minutes earlier I was stirring the stock with a stainless steel spoon with similar force.
No joke, some four letter words were uttered and various other gasps of amazement. It was like some weird phenomena you hear about on some dodgy web site about ghosts or UFOs. The photo shows the end result but is only a small area.
Actually after the shock and awe, I realised it was going to be a pain in the butt to clean up, because there were hundreds of tiny slithers (really tiny, some are to small to be picked up by the camera) of glass all over the work surface that I use to prepare food as well as the sink area where clean plates etc. were drying.
Jokingly it reminded me of the chocolate cream egg adverts where they are animated exploding (why is that amusing?!).
I have heard of this happening before (I think). The tension in the old toughened glass couldn't take a small knock and the whole thing disintegrated. It's interesting that a small knock at probably a single point caused a catastrophic destruction of the complete object. Makes you want to know just what happened at the molecular level and how that rippled through the object.
I guess it could have done the same whilst I was making the stock, not sure if that would have been better, at least it would have ended up on the floor instead of over the work surface.
Update: I have noticed that fine glass dust is around the area, so the whole cleaning process is like some sort of decontamination scene. I think the work surface is clear, so can return carefully checked items at one end of the work surface. The sink area is a nightmare, will have to carefully examine each plate, fork etc for signs of glass. I'm going to be double checking every item for weeks now!