Monday, June 25, 2012

“Some Chores”

         You know them. The chores you must do, but hate to do, so you avoid them until—well, until something goes wrong. Then your evasive maneuvers avalanche into a major problem.
         I could list at least ten household chores I abhor, but recently cleaning the refrigerator climbed onto the top of my list. Usually, I do a “sniff-n-toss” round every Sunday. You know, where I tentatively open every Rubbermaid container, give it a cautious sniff, and toss it if there’s even a hint of spoilage. I do a good job of remembering when I served something and can judge the exact moment when something must meet the garbage disposal. I don’t consider this weekly ritual really cleaning the fridge, though.
         Cleaning the fridge involves taking out every single item from every self and bin, and then scrubbing down the interior. I check for expirations dates, throw out anything that’s resided too long, and reorganize everything into better categories. Currently, I have hot peppers, pickles, relish, and jellies standing next to each other one door cubby. I don’t know why, but it works for me.
         Cleaning the fridge includes emptying the freezer compartment. This task daunts me, so I drag my feet when it comes to doing this. Off-and-on for years, our freezer insists upon dumping water onto the floor. This is the first signal that there’s a clog. If I ignore this warning, the water begins to pool back in the freezer where it becomes a plate of ice, adhering the basket in my freezer to the bottom. Usually, my Type A personality jumps onto this aberration immediately, and I defrost the ice. The cascade of events over the last few months forced me to look the other way, and the thin sheet of ice grew daily until the entire basket filled with ice. Our freezer looked like we’d had a block of ice delivered!
         Last night, armed with heat gun and a pile of towels, David tackled the task of melting our giant ice cube. He added a screw driver to his arsenal and eventually pried the basket from the freezer. While I cleared the basket wires of ice, he cleaned every tube and plug he could find. He muscled the fridge away from the wall and attacked the dusty backside with the vacuum, a chore I’ve neglected for doing for, well—months.
         Now our Admiral sits neatly organized and gleaming inside and out. I tell myself that I’ll keep “on top” of this chore and won’t neglect it again. I promise myself that if I notice a little ice forming on that bottom basked, I’ll flush out the tube and clear out the clog. Yep. That’s my plan.

Copyright 2012 Elizabeth Abrams Chapman

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