A persistent stink in our fridge is beginning to feel like a haunting. What IS that smell?! K. and I have doggedly taken turns wiping down and emptying shelves and containers. I drained the veggie swamp from the lower bin. More than one green fuzzy lump has made its way down the disposer (“was that meat or potatoes” one wonders idly watching the grinding matter, hoping none of it will generate spit-back in the face). So, where’s the stink? Oh, I suppose there are a few mystery containers left.
Given my habits of attention (HA!), it is very possible that all 6-7 of those yogurt containers are, in fact, yogurt. And here’s another thing. What do you bet that all 6-7 are vanilla? You can’t imagine the number of times that I have gone to whip up a simple cucumber salad only to discover that every single tub of yogurt crowding my fridge is VANILLA!! That means I get no points whatsoever for having fresh and appealing dill at the ready.
Conclusions about the stink are running in two directions. One is downright scary — what if it’s coming from the freezer? What mass of what decomposing grotesquerie would it have to be if even its frozen state it is capable of perfuming our kitchen with a rancid blossom of stink? I think of the new movie, “The Unborn” to reach the right level of disgust.
The other direction is old — (and here you have permission to use Andy Rooney’s voice) — Why aren’t fridges wider than they are deep? I’ve seen them out there, in the glossy magazines, so I know someone’s thought of this. Wouldn’t it be great if no shelf were deeper than one or two containers’ worth? I call a good 60% of our Maytag “the back forty”. It often seems to me that the only purpose of the distant reaches of the fridge is to house the shit that will prop up the triple-stacked stuff in the usable, visible real estate of the front. Alas!
This is why I love the days before I grocery shop, for as the fridge declutters, it gets brighter in there and my sense of calm grows. Today the stresses of having nothing to eat/nothing to feed teenage boys/nothing on deck for dinner will compete with the satisfaction of having an increasingly empty, increasingly illuminated fridge. It is amazing how resourceful my putting off grocery shopping makes me in the kitchen!