Finding Inspiration Amongst the Sledge

I cleaned the fridge out.

I know you don’t want to hear about it, but I’m afraid I have the floor.  It all started when I spent the entirety of Saturday failing miserably at my job.  We all have those days, don’t we?  Sometimes the lawyer loses a case.  Sometimes the janitor slips on his own mop.  Sometimes the waitress drops the plate.  Sometimes the editor misses a comma.

Sometimes the mother can’t gather the courage to… do anything, really.

And so I sat down and was ever-so-steadily and gradually buried alive by my own children and in my own house.  Sunday I wallowed in it because I’d really rather not break with my grand tradition of resting on Sunday.  Also, you might very well replace the words “with my grand traditions of” with “that one commandment about.”

I woke up this morning with renewed resolve, and if you were to come into my house this very minute, you would point your finger at me and accuse me outright of lying.  Because my house looks terrible, that’s why.  BUT I did work.  I just focused on those hideous hidden areas we all have that no one else knows about.

Like the fridge.

In my defense, the fridge is generally cleaned somewhat regularly.  I just haven’t happened to give it a proper scrub down lately.  Maybe ever.  I can’t be sure.  I can’t be bothered.

I filled the kids’ tub up with warm soapy water and dunked the crispers in it.  Then I went back to the fridge, opened the door and gasped.

There was a substance: unknown cascading down the inside of the fridge.  It had been completely hidden by the crispers.  Now, now… before you go barfing your way away from the computer…

I must tell you what this substance: unknown did for me.  It inspired me in two different ways.

#1) It totally and completely grossed me out to the point that I ABSOLUTELY HAD TO RID MY WORLD OF IT and I proceeded to make an afternoon of it, scrubbing until my arm and hand were literally cramping from exertion.

#2) I wrote something of a mental sonnet about it.  Or maybe it was more like a tribute.  It really deserved one, don’t you think? I’ll tell you why.

  • It refused to give up it’s age, no matter how hard I tried to figure it out.  THAT, dears, is a mark of true refinement.
  • It never let on what it really was.  Mysteriousness is always something to be admired -in my case especially on account of my desiring it so much.  It isn’t my nature to be mysterious.  It’s more my nature to fling the tedious details of my daily life into your face. Fridge sledge, for instance.
  • It was absolutely resolute.  It refused to go down without a fight.  I began the battle in a dignified squat and ended it flat on my belly, scrubbing with what little energy I had left.  After I wrung my baking soda covered rag out for the last time, I nodded at the filthy water as if to say, “I’m better for having known you.”  I can’t be sure, but I think it spit back a little.

I’ll also tell you that cleaning my fridge is entirely disconcerting.  Aside from the guilt that comes from throwing away wasted food, there’s the matter of Tupperware that comes flying at you when you least expect it.  Just when you think you’ve bleached the last of them, you pull the bottom left crisper out only to be surprised by Tupperware tucked far in the back filled with only MOLD knows what.  I’m not even going to talk about what happened when  pulled the bottom right crisper out suffice to say I jumped all the way from my fridge to my stove.

If I’d have had the strength of the sledge, I wouldn’t have done that.

Friends, if you do nothing today (and by “today” I mean “tomorrow” which actually starts in 42 minutes) I’ll understand.  But if you DO do something, I might suggest you make that something “clean the fridge.”  You won’t come out smelling good, but you’ll feel like a million.

(one last note: I once came in third in a spelling bee.  I might have come in first if I would have been able to spell “refrigerator.” They let me go to the county spelling bee, but I lost there as well because I couldn’t spell “tempestuous.”  T-E-M-P-E-S-T-U-O-U-S and I’ll never forget it.)



  1. Steve-the brother says:

    I think you mean “sludge”, but then calling it names might’ve help scare it off.

  2. Steve-the brother says:

    I think I mean “helped” :/

  3. My microwave is so scary right now. This might have motivated me to go and clean it. :)

  4. I’m pretty sure it’s been at least a year since I’ve cleaned my fridge. And I’m not going to clean it tomorrow, because I am sick. And I will hold on to that flimsy excuse(and my right to start any sentence I please with the word “and”) with the might of the sludge. :)

  5. I think it’s been…oh, at least a year since I’ve cleaned out my fridge. And I am going to not clean it out tomorrow, because I’m sick. And I’m going to hold to that excuse (and the right to start any sentence I please with the word “and”) with all of the might exhibited by your sludge.

  6. Oops. Printed twice. Sorry ’bout that. :)

  7. I missed “overt” in 5th grade. O-V-E-R-E-T and I’ll never forget that either.
    Or in sixth grade, it was “canary.” C-A-N-A-A-R-Y. Yep.

  8. storylady says:

    Steve, I guess I did mean “sludge” but since I can’t actually identify the substance, I’m going to stick with “sledge.”

    And please, let’s not make this a “whole nuther” repeat of the eash vs. eesh fiasco. Don’t you get it? You won.

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