Friday, February 3, 2012

Source of the Stink

   This morning I opened our refrigerator to start the normal breakfast prep and pack a lunch for Handsome. Despite the dark, artsy fragrance of coffee brewing a few feet to my left, despite the clean, cold freshness of the tile floor beneath my bare feet and the calm black of the sky outside my kitchen window, I was suddenly and unpleasantly bowled over by an offensive, malodorous wretchedness billowing out from my side-by-side. If this smell had a color, it would be green. Putrid, slimy, witch's brew-with-eye-of-newt green. Grody. Like, gag me with a spoon grody.

   I did a quick investigation and found, to my eternal dismay, that I am a hoarder of romaine lettuce, garlic cloves, and spinach leaves. Oh, and also lots of other things, but those were not the stinky headline this morning. 

   The odor instantly rearranged my priorities for the day, because I absolutely will not live with gross smells. So now, as I write this, the refrigerator has been emptied of nearly everything, even though only a few things had caused the problem. A giant chicken bowl full of donatable goodies, some sudsy hot vinegar water, and a vanilla candle later... and once again all is right in Denmark. The kitchen and the fridge smell lovely, and I am free to go purchase more romaine lettuce, garlic, and spinach.

   Okay, not to get overly philosophical on this rainy Friday morning with a cup of coffee in front of me... I mean, seriously, I might as well be in a book store, wearing a knit hat and fake horn rimmed glasses here... but this morning's unexpected domestic task could not have come at a better time for yours truly. 

   Living with a dysfunction or some measure of pain can only be tolerated for so long before the source has to be identified and dealt with. Coping mechanisms and forgiveness and such are eventually only effective as healing balms for after the problem is solved, and I just don't think we can expect ourselves or our loved ones to always find the energy needed to overcome a deep pain with average, daily acts of love.

   Don't get me wrong... I am in full support of average, daily acts of love; it's pretty much my favorite thing ever... but maybe you know what I'm talking about. Maybe you too have a deep pain which you are generally able to suppress and live with but which inevitably resurfaces and disrupts all of your peace and tranquility.

   All I'm suggesting here is that once in a while it's wise to take an honest inventory of both your refrigerator and your heart and deal with the slimy lettuce. Because it stinks. And when you open either door, nobody can stand the smell.

   And no sir, I did not take photos of the malodorous carnage. Besides, the chickens have eaten most of it by now.

You Can't Fake a Fresh Heart,
and You Can't Febreeze Major Appliances.
Be well.



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