Either I was born with canine-level olfactory organs, or no one else in my office cares that the refrigerator-in which they store their lunches-smells increasingly of decay. But I care. And last week I did something about it.
Tuesday: Open fridge door after long weekend to wedge my hermetically sealed lunch container into the drawer I've claimed as my own; catch a whiff of something not quite right. I make a mental note to investigate later and scurry off to a meeting.
Wednesday: In early; open fridge door and discover mystery smell is still there. Having no pressing engagements, I visually scan the fridge contents. Hasn't that re-sealable bag of grated cheese been in here since the chili cook-off in February?! I allow my brain to really see all the way-past-expiration-date salad dressings, Styrofoam take-home containers, leftover "all-nighter" pizza plastic-wrapped with serial killer precision (that's been there for nearly a month!), and dangerously wet plastic bags from the grocery store each containing a few sticks of string cheese, Greek yogurt cups, and the like. My head is buzzing like I've had too much caffeine. I think I might actually swoon. I close the double-door horror show and stumble back to my desk, blinking.
Thursday: Awake before dawn thinking about bacteria; resolve to "Do Something about the Fridge." Armed with anti-bacterial wipes and two rolls of paper towels, I go in. Who thought someone would actually use three bowls of leftover pork and beans? I make bold, autocratic decisions about what stays and what gets tossed into the big Rubbermaid garbage pail...the one with the lid. After 20 frenzied minutes I've barely made a dent. But, I solve the mystery of the bad smell: three (yes, three) containers of sliced Bermuda onion left over from the potluck barbecue two weeks ago. Even if every person in our office put a pungent slice of onion on every salad and/or sandwich consumed for that same two-week period, we'd still have had one container left. Who brought this many onions to the picnic?
Friday: While rinsing oatmeal residue from my bowl so it wouldn't petrify and become impossible to remove even in the dishwasher, overhear coworker comment that there seems to be more room in the fridge; enjoy self-satisfied smile knowing I'm one of the few who would a) rinse her oatmeal bowl, and b) take the initiative to throw things away for the betterment of society. Start and delete at least three admonishing emails, but decide being the anonymous Fridge Safety Fairy is best course of action.
Besides, imagine the scientific and sociological experiments I'll see first-hand.
I love this post, and I can relate! Although I don't think our refrigerator has ever gotten quite that bad... I think the worst smell though is when all those people go down to heat up their lunch early and then carry it back to their desks. I then have to sit trying to focus on my work for the next half hour smelling something which I'm pretty sure should not even be considered edible. I mean, if you're going to force yourself to eat something that smells so bad, the least you can do is keep it away from the general population! Although, I must say it has been a fairly decent diet plan for me as I'm always nauseous when I head to lunch...
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