Without warning, the faucet handle shot into the air, hit the ceiling with a "BANG," narrowly missed the glass light fixture. It was lucky the owners were home, or the water could have caused major damage. Note the extensive corrosion to the threads on the failed part. Water spewed out of the faucet in an explosive fashion, much like a miniature fire hydrant.
Moral of the story: If you see visible corrosion on the outside of an older model plumbing fixture, you may not need to fly to Italy to experience the majesty of the Trevi Fountain!