Friday, April 11, 2008


One would think that numerous postings on the fridge as well as common decency and consideration for others would keep people from leaving their moldy food in the fridge for weeks at a time. Alas, this is not true, and actually never has been since the beginning of time (or at least since electric refrigeration). Therefore, I took it upon myself to clean out the collection of poisonous substances from our fridge at work, after sending out this e-mail:

Subject: Penicillin is a miracle of modern science
Date: March 19, 2008 7:04:43 AM PDT

Yes, penicillin is a wonderful thing! It has also already been discovered. The reason I bring this up is because there are quite a few science experiments being conducted in our refrigerator right now. Don't get me wrong, I am as hopeful as the next person that we find the cure for cancer as soon as possible, but I have a feeling that it won't happen in our overcrowded little fridge. Therefore, I am going to don my Haz Mat suit on Friday and clean out all the old food, as well as all the little nooks and crannies where there are spills, spots, and spores.

Please label anything you wish to keep. But be warned, if there is a bag with your name on it that was left over from the last cleaning and contains a moldy banana and six-month-old yogurt, I will be ruthless. (I won't be throwing out any reusable bags/containers, but I may suggest that you take them home and wash them if they are overflowing with fungus.)

Thank you for your cooperation!!

After donning rubber gloves and arming myself with a full-sized trash can and a bottle of 409, I went in. I found unrecognizable food that had been in there for months, according to the expiration date, and actually found an old mustard bottle that expired in 2006. People had written their name on bags from the last few times we cleaned out the fridge, and had then left the bags to rot. It was like going on a disgusting archaeological dig. I managed to fill the entire trash can and then some, and that didn't even count all the reusable containers that would need to be washed.

I didn't actually expect the fridge to stay clean for long, but so far people seem to be happy to comply and the fridge is at least a little emptier. It's hard when you have close to 30 people sharing a fridge to find any room in it. It doesn't help that there is one woman at work who seems to believe that it is for her own personal use, as she stock piles food in it as well as the freezer and her cubicle. I swear she has at least four dozen muffins in the freezer, and a whole grocery isle in "her" drawer of the fridge, as she calls it. She even removes people's food if they dare to try and find space in the drawer for their own food. Next time I clean out the fridge I might just have to accidentally throw everything of hers away...

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