Monday, January 2, 2017

The Scrubbing

Tonight I was so bored of painting my nails and reading adoring fan mail that I decided to clean my dusty-from-unuse stove.


No, that's how it happened in the alternate reality where I'm a famous but and reclusive writer, living in a seaside loft by my lonely self, writing best-selling songs and poetry and subsisting on organic salads and fruit smoothies.

In this reality, I took a break from all my other to-do lists to scrub the stove that we use every single day. The stove that has five glorious burners so I can cook Christmas dinners for nine people or just spread out fresh pans of chocolate bark. The same stove where a gleeful Pippin helps me mix pancake batter and fill muffin molds. The same stove that was filthy and sticky from a concoction of dust, grease, and miscellaneous spatters and practically screaming for a bath.

And, also, the stove that has not been thoroughly deep-cleaned since we moved here. This became sadly obvious when I decided to remove the metal caps and found what looked like a small dried piece of mushroom underneath one of them... and I think the last time I cooked mushrooms was last spring, in our old apartment. So unless Pippin or D brought a chunk of fungus with us as a souvenir, I'm guess that was from the previous owners.

Then again, it might have been a chunk of apple. I'm not going to taste it to check. Pippin probably would, if I offered it to him, but since we haven't really trained him in the art of mystery-food-tasting, he probably would just swallow it without giving me any feedback. Until he got food poisoning, in which case there would be plenty of feedback and food back. I'm already impressed that we haven't gotten flu lately. The less vomiting the better.

And for the record, I did scrub the cupboards, the oven, the stove, and the microwave before we moved in. The stove obviously needed more attention, though, and  is now see-your-face-in-the-reflection shiny. I don't expect it will stay that way. I don't even expect that the mess will be limited to Unox soup splatters, escaping rice grains, and bell pepper chunks. Its future is not looking promising, given its history with us.

In October, investigating suspicious wet areas meant that the old styrofoam insulation got shoved around and tiny polystyrene 'snow' decorated everything below. The sadly leaky roof, which dripped buckets of water, needed fixed in November. The fixing, which involved additional manpower and roaring saws, sent rotted wood splinters and sawdust down. In December we ripped out the old kitchen wall, which meant sheetrock dust and chunks decorating everything in sight. And now, in January, as D pulled off the ceiling this week to open up the non-rotted part of the ceiling, more plaster dust and screws went flying everywhere.

By February, D will probably have found some ingenious way to deal with the raised-and-lowered ceiling issues between the living room and kitchen. The alternative is that I say, "I don't care that they're two different heights, let's just cover it all up and pretend it's one level." Either way, there will be more dust showering down on the stove soon. But as long as I can cook meals while admiring our progress, I'm okay with that. 

Even if there's no fan mail involved.

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