Emily Post might be the bomb when it comes to etiquette, but some of it makes no sense to me.
What the devil good is a salad fork? Itís too small. Itís like a baby fork. Itís even too small for any baby. Why on earth would you want a short stubby fork with short stubby tines on it to try to get all those leafy vegetables and cucumbers and croutons into your mouth? Wouldnít you want something with long tines thatíll really fit a bit on it? Salad forks are ridiculous and if the state legislature wants to regulate something, it should be salad forks.
How come most refrigerators donít come with those little oval-shaped depressions at the top of the inside of the door to put eggs? Remember those? Instead, you buy an 18-count pack of eggs if youíre like me and love eggs perhaps more than chocolate even, and when you get down to say, two eggs, you have to store this big dadgum box in the fridge because if you donít sure as shootiní those last two eggs are gonna get smashed and a horrible mess will follow.
Why donít the manufacturers of refrigerators when they design those little doors for butter, margarine and the like on your main refrigerator door, get together with the manufacturers of butter, margarine and the like to design containers that will actually fit in those so cute little cubby holes with doors?
A personal request: A place to store my fishing worms. Fishing worms store-bought in those little white Styrofoam containers must be kept refrigerated if you want to keep them from one trip to the next, and my girl hates to find those things in the fridge. Fridges should have a special little cubby hole door marked "Fish Bait" for me to put my packs of fishing worms where they wonít turn anyoneís stomach.
Whatís a "crisper?" Are the things you put in there not already crisp? Or can you put, say, bread in there and it comes out crispy? Shouldnít it be a "keep-it-crispy" or a "crispy-keeper" marking on those drawers at the bottom of the fridge?
(Which brings me to the irresistible urge to mention: It is NOT a "hot water heater" people, itís a "water heater." If the waterís already hot, you donít need to heat it, do you?)
Explain to me what that button is that says "normal" and "energy saver" and why is it on the inside of the fridge so you have to open the door and waste energy trying to figure out which one you should turn it to?
It doesnít matter, anyway, because if it works like the temperature control in the refrigerator itíll never be right anyway. You put the temperature control on 6 and your milk is lukewarm. You put it on 7 and the top freezes shut. You try to put it right between 6 and 7 and it gets totally confused and the whole contraption shuts down and everything spoils including your pickles, which takes some serious doing.
My grandparents had the first fridge with ice and water dispensers on the outside of the door, and I had my own special glass near the fridge so I could go get cold water and ice if I so desired anytime I wanted. I was never a wasteful lad so I could have as much as I wanted anytime I wanted. My grandmother also had the first microwave oven I ever saw, a Montgomery Wards model that was big as a television and heavy as a load of bricks and you know what? Iím still using that very same microwave oven today. The house lights dim when I hit the "cook" button and the electrical meter speeds up, but thatís okay, it still works and has plenty of room inside with a heavy, sturdy glass shelf. Most microwave ovens you see today are dinky little things that you have a hard time fitting a cup of coffee into. Mine would knock down jetliners with ray beams if I could run it with the door open.
It had a slot where you could slide these plastic cards in the front and it would read a recipe from the cards then know what temperature to cook, maybe several ascending or descending temperatures, for how long, and so forth for say a casserole or something. That was kinda cool but I donít know if my grandmother ever used it, and I canít find the cards now.
My grandmother loved gadgets, anything she thought would be "handy." Though she lived more than 70 years of her more than 90-year life in Louisiana, she often reverted to Texan when she ran across something "handy." You know. Something like a special tool for opening stubborn jars, for example.
"Well, thatís right handy," sheíd say in a Texas drawl that had withstood the passing of several decades, gallons of bayou water and the best efforts of an Indian reservation to eliminate it. I miss that sound more than youíll ever know.
I found so many of those things in the house: jar openers, knife organizers, thread racks. A favorite of mine was a special multi-level clothes hanger that would hold about eight pairs of pants vertically in the same amount of space horizontally it would take to store one.
But where was I? Oh, yes. Why canít anyone design a good water hose nozzle anymore? I donít think my parents bought more than two water hose nozzles during my entire childhood and that was only because I ran over the first one with the lawnmower. I have probably bought more water hose nozzles since becoming an adult and being responsible for buying such things on my own than they did in their entire lives. Water hose nozzles today are cheap imitations of the water nozzles we used to have and you donít even have time to run over them with a lawnmower before they break. And they break in the oddest ways: You turn the dial to "stream" and you get a three-pronged shoot straight up, straight to the left and one backwards directly into your belly button. If you donít get one of those fancy-dancy selectable nozzles and just settle for your basic water hose nozzle, you squeeze the handle to shoot the water and it comes apart in your hand like a soggy gingersnap. Thereís nothing more irritating than a water hose nozzle coming apart in your hands. Except maybe salad forks.