The refrigerator freezer and coat hangers. Frankly, until last week, I never gave a second thought to either of them.
I read two articles about them in a magazine last week. The first dealt with “organizing your freezer” to establish a “better relationship with it.” It talked about labeling plastic containers and color-coding frozen meats and vegetables.
It warned of the dangers of the dreaded “warm door syndrome,” because the door is the warmest part of the whole freezer.
I almost only use the freezer door because that is the only part of the freezer I dare venture into. Gee, I guess my frozen liverwurst patties haven’t been all that frozen after all. (Now that I think about it, I am starting to feel a little queasy.) Then it dawned on me. I do not have a relationship with my freezer.
I rarely use the freezer in the first place. I have no idea what’s in there or how long it has been there. My wife, on the other hand, knows to the day when that anonymous foil wad in the back was placed there and, more amazingly, what is actually in it.
I open the door to the freezer and enter a different realm. It is dark and crowded in there, and it belches a cloud of icy mist at me as I lean forward and peer inside for a look around. I imagine a couple of glowing eyes in the back as I hear it whisper to me, “Won’t you come in, Big Chuck?,” which is followed, of course, by a sinister Vincent Price laugh.
When I open the freezer door to retrieve an item, I can almost never find what I am looking for. I turn and holler to my wife, “Honey, I can’t find the ...” and before I can even finish my sentence, Trish has reached into the ice-covered cavity and pulled out the exact item I was searching for. And she does this without even looking. I hate when she does that.
So the “Organizing Tips for Your Freezer” article was way over my head in the first place. A relationship with a freezer? No. A relationship with the dog? Yes.
The other article was titled “Choosing the Right Clothes Hanger.” Huh? The article described styles of hangers, proper hanger use, and the “do’s and don’ts of hanging your clothes.”
Wire hangers, plastic hangers, wooden hangers, scented hangers, clip hangers, etc. Yes, we have them at our house. But all on her side of the closet.
Give me a plain old black wire hanger and I can use it for everything. And if it won’t hold up my heavy leather jacket, I’ll just double up on the hangers so that it does.
This article got me thinking. Have I ever in my life purchased a clothes hanger? No. I mean when you buy a house, aren’t they already in the closets? When you purchase a shirt, doesn’t it already come with a hanger? Can you buy one hanger? Do they come in packs of 10? Are they a dime each? A dollar each? Who actually makes wire hangers?
Is there a huge factory somewhere where people toil every day making them? I guess I thought that hangers have always been around. Made by God. Like grass and rainbows.
I continued reading until I came to the part about “shoulder bumps” caused by putting a too-big shirt on a too-small hanger. I found myself looking in the nearest mirror. Gulp … there they were. Small, to be sure, but I detected a hint of a bump on either shoulder.
The article went on to tell of the dangers of hanging your pants on hanger clips. I do that. It said, “Hanger clips will leave small dents in the crease of your pants.” Again I glanced in the mirror and there they were. A bead of sweat started to trickle down my brow.
The article said I should be using bamboo hangars because “they are the most environmentally friendly hangers and are the hanger of choice for the green conscious consumer.”
Bamboo? I use a wire hanger that is probably made in a sweatshop in Vietnam and sprayed with a toxic paint. Great, now my hangers and I are destroying the universe. My hands started to tremble as I finally set the magazine down.
Now I am completely paranoid. My clothes hangers are polluting the Earth and my freezer has “warm door syndrome.” Where did I go wrong? I’ll catch you in two ...
“BIG CHUCK” D’IMPERIO can be heard on weekdays beginning at 6 a.m. on WDOS-AM 730 in Oneonta, and also on Thursday nights from 7-9 p.m. on WSRK-FM 103.9 for his “Oldies Jukebox Show.” You can find “Big Chuck” on Facebook under Upstate New York Books. He invites you to contact him at email@example.com. His columns can be found at www.thedailystar.com/bigchuck.