I would like to thank everyone involved in warning me about my homicidal air fryer.

I opened my email the other day to find a notice from Amazon: My air fryer had been recalled, and I don't mean "remembered in a Proustian reverie with melancholy fondness." Another email from the device's manufacturer told me that it posed a clear and present danger and should not be used.

Later I checked Google News, and one of the main stories was an air fryer recall. The next morning, the warning was in this very paper.

You know, I was starting to think there was something wrong with my air fryer. Or, as I now thought of it, the murder box.

At this point, I expected a phone call: "We've been trying to reach you in regards to your air fryer." I expected a man at the grocery store to lean close: "Psst. Word to the wise, pal. Your air fryer has it out for you." When I got home, there was a messenger pigeon on my stoop with the URL for the rebate tied around its leg. OK, OK. I get it.

The website informed me that I was eligible for a brand-new unit, which was stunning. It's three years old. Appliances have the lifespan of a mayfly these days, and they're willing to replace it? Well, that's how you build goodwill and repeat business and keep the cranky folk from suing, I suppose.

All I had to do was get the serial number and the B/N, or "batch number." Then I had to send a picture of the front, the side and the bottom, with a piece of paper listing the batch number. Then the chilling part: Each picture must contain unmistakable evidence that the electrical cord had been severed from the unit.

There's something unnerving about this, like a kidnapper sending a picture of a severed finger. I understand the rationale — they want to make sure the thing is good and truly dead. You ask: Couldn't you photoshop it and resell the unit? Yes, if I was a psychopath.

They didn't advise me to unplug the unit before cutting the electrical cord, but I'm sure this was an oversight, and some lawyer bolted up in bed from a nightmare of slack-jawed dolts taking a scissors to a plugged-in cord and getting such a hard jolt that their skeleton blinked on and off. They've probably added that warning to the site by now.

But the most surprising thing about the email from the maker was that it even came, because that means I registered the fryer. I usually don't do that sort of thing, because then they bug you constantly with hints and tips and offers.

It takes a nanosecond to subscribe, but unsubscribing involves a team of narcoleptic bookkeepers who have to harness arthritic sled dogs to get to the warehouse, get out the big compendium of email addresses and painstakingly Wite-Out your name.

I'm sure that replying to the recall means even more emails, with lots of deals on new products that absolutely will not burn the house down, we promise this time.

And that's fine. It's a small price to pay for a new appliance. It'll be here soon, which is good: The cord keeps burning through the electrical tape I used to put it back together. Who's going to reimburse me for that?