In the midst of what has been for me, as Queen Elizabeth said some years ago, an annus horribilis, I am trying to stay in the moment and appreciate the small things. Not so small but giving me little starbursts of pleasure every day for the last couple of weeks is our new refrigerator. Nothing fancy, it had to fit into a rather small space, but it does have a bottom freezer with a pullout drawer and its creamy, rust-free facade delights me in a silly way.
All the world is a digression cue: I’ve long had an idea about the state of affairs between the sexes that I call The Refrigerator Theory.
You know how, when you buy a major appliance, such as a refrigerator, washer/dryer or stove, you spend a lot of time on the process: Check Consumer Reports, cost-compare Costco and Sears, pay a hefty sum, fill out the warranty forms, deal with the hassle of getting rid of the old appliance and installing the new. Then you expect it to work for years and years and years without incident, without need of repair, without evidence of wear and tear, with (in short) the same unmarked smiling face as it presented on the very first day it was delivered?
That’s what men expect in women. The male makes the first phone call, plans and pays for the dates, puts off his accustomed guys’ nights, listens to her attentively, tries stuff he’s never tried before because she likes it, drops honeyed words in her ears. Eventually, she is won over. He buys the ring. He shows up when she says, wearing what she rented for him, recites the vows she masterminded, puts up with his new brother-in-law’s drunken toast at the party. And, finally, a few days later, she’s installed. And from there, he expects hassle-free performance for the foreseeable future and goes back to his bachelor habits. (“I told you I loved you. I married you, didn’t I?”).
That’s my theory — for most men, at least of my generation — and I’m sticking to it. But back to food-related matters. That new fridge.
Here was the not-fun part: Emptying the old refrigerator, digging out the freezer, stripping the door of ancient photographs and expired doctor’s appointment cards. Took me one whole evening and a frantic morning when the delivery crew came.
Broke a favorite casserole dish hurrying. Threw away uku-thousand dollars’ worth of dried-up, forgotten, I’ll-use-this-someday condiments. Consolidated a half-dozen duplicated (or triplicated) products. Got misty when I found, at the back of the freezer, the last fruitcake my mother ever made (she’s alive and with us, thank God, but gave up making fruitcakes when the ingredients got so pricey and I actually LIKE her fruitcake, just can’t bring myself to eat it). Discovered I had more than three pounds of different types of nuts (too bad you can’t sell your unwanted nuts; they’re worth almost as much as gold). Nearly danced Hava Nageela when the delivery man told me I didn’t have to clean the old fridge out. Watched it go without a backward glance.
Now I reflexively wipe down the new fridge several times a day, move things around for the most well-organized appearance, group products by use and ethnicity. Amuse myself. But pretty soon, I’ll turn into a man. I’ll stop paying attention and get annoyed when it shows a stain or a ding. Right now, I’ll just enjoy the honeymoon.
It is so funny Wanda…I just went through the exact same thing with a new fridge this week end…oh my god the nuts….pounds of them, old condiments..it was like you were talking about my fridge….but it was worth of it..I feel this a new start and I see life in the fridge much more clearer now. Life simple things… is good with a upper double French door and bottom freezer…love it!
LOL… I am so jealous! I would love a new fridge.. mine is as old as my daughter, who’s now 18 1/2. But still running. I just can’t stand it anymore… its an old “side by side” door configuration and I never can fit anything into it properly. My next fridge will be one of those “french door” fridge tops with a freezer on the bottom, like you described. In my household we tend to treat our appliances like we treat our cars… use them & use them until they die… and hope that they last at least 10 years or more. (I’m lucky – I’m going on 29 years now with one old Kenmore fridge we have out in the garage… and a freezer that we bought when we moved into our house in Aug 1985. Both are still running! I should be so lucky with my cars… but we’ve done ok – my old Ford (now gone, alas) lasted 12 years, and my husband’s 2000 Kia is still with us too….barely. I have fantasies of being more organized in my new fridge, as I have not been in my old. But I don’t know if I could ever keep up my resolution. You KNOW you bought something… but you can’t find it. So you figure you used it up, and you buy another one. So you end up with hidden “lost things” taking up valuable space. Alton Brown on the Food Network once had a show about how to store food properly, how to bag it up to avoid freezer burn, and how to organize the freezer so you can find everything and use things up in a timely manner, old stuff pulled to the front, new stuff to the back, etc. But somehow I can never keep it up. Maybe its too complicated for my family to follow? despite my best efforts….oh well.
This submission may to too late. I haven’t made psehaant in ages but this is how we’ve done it: Slow cooker liner (optional)1 zip top gallon sized bag1/4 cup flour1 tbsp. seasoned salt or spiced salt blend such as Old Bay or Tony Chachere’smeat of 2 psehaants, boned and cut into pieces2 cans of condensed cream soup (any flavor or combination)2 soup cans of water1 package dry onion soup mixStep 1Put the cut psehaant into the zip top bag.Step 2Add the flour and salt seasoning to the bag with the psehaant. Seal the bag and shake to coat the psehaant.Step 3Put the slow cooker liner into the slow cooker. You do not need one, but it will make cleanup easier.Step 4Add the psehaant, 2 cans of condensed soup, 2 cans of water and the dry onion soup mix to the slow cooker.Step 5Cover the slow cooker. Plug it in and let the psehaant cook on low heat for 7 to 8 hours. Serve the psehaant warm.