What do you do with a box of refrigerator rejects: mustard, ketchup, mayo, barbecue sauce, vinegar, blue cheese salad dressing, a jar of crushed basil, another jar of minced garlic, and some salsa? All of these in various states of use.
I’ve moved many times. I believe I’m not alone in some generalities: there is a mass of things you move very orderly. Large items with predetermined destinations in your new place. Labeled boxes of sorted items: kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, storage. There is another category of things: the boxes of random crap. Reject items of no real grouping: a bicycle bump along with a lone throw pillow, a bottle of Advil a belt you haven’t used in 2 decades, Windex a spare sock found by the dryer, 3 batteries and a cup. Stuff that for one reason or another didn’t make the cut with the rest of the ordered goods.
Eventually all this finds its way to your new place. Even the random box. But what if you have no new place? I’ve only got a backpack. If I wind up in Mexico and pull out three batteries, a sock, and some Windex, please revoke my right to travel, clearly I’m doing it wrong.
Even worse this time was the stuff in the fridge. Normally in a move, as the date approaches you stop buying stuff that has to be refrigerated, try to consume as much of the remnants as possible, and at the end you move a box of orphans from one place to the other. So it was with me this time. As the final day approached I ate items from the freezer that were easily over a year old. Dinner one night was broccoli. That’s all, just broccoli. 2 bags of frozen broccoli that comes up shriveled, watery, and somehow mysteriously chewy. Another night a tuna steak that had been in the freezer since time began. Oh, the sweet zest of freezer burn!
What’s that? Just throw it out? Listen up: there are children starving in Africa. This is good, nutritious food, little mister. Money was spent on this and now that you are unemployed, well money is going to be pretty scarce, now isn’t it? Sure, you could go across the street and get a burrito, but you have food RIGHT HERE that needs eating. So get to it.
So the final meal? Hold on to your hats, foodies:
– 2 bags of frozen spinach, with flax seed oil and lemon juice.
– 1 jar of pimento stuffed olives
– 1 spoonful of almond butter (one should ensure a bit of protein, no?)
As for the box of orphan condiments mentioned at the beginning of this? Well, it appears I do have limits. They joined their freezer friends (a bag of green beans I couldn’t bring myself to eat and the 2nd tuna steak) in the dumpster.
Ultimately I’m left to wonder why I found it so easy to get rid of a couch, TV, clothes, and other major things, yet guilt-wrenching and stress inducing to just say goodbye to a 3 year old half-used bottle of ketchup. There’s a lesson in here somewhere. I’m sure the Buddha himself would have some wisdom to confer where he there to share the spinach / flax / lemon juice concoction with me.