I cleaned out the refrigerator today and violated rule number 32 of the Happy Housewives code: Never Open a Container That Has Been In There For Longer Than a Month.
There was a container in my refrigerator that said Great Value Fat Free Sour Cream. I knew I hadn’t bought it. I don’t shop at Wal-Mart. I never buy fat free sour cream. Why anyone on the planet would buy it is beyond me. I buy full fat everything and I will die happy, with my arteries clogged full of goo. But that’s not the point.
The point is this container has been in my refrigerator for quite awhile. Since I didn’t recognize it, I did what any self respecting homeower would do and I simply shifted it from spot to spot and cleaned around it. I guess in the back of my mind, I was hoping one of you might come over and reclaim it.
All this time, I have assumed it contained fat free sour cream. What else would it be? Jimmy Hoffa? The Rosetta Stone? Or something a bit more menacing?
Today I picked up the container and looked at it for the first time. The sell by date was Jan 2007. I don’t know if you realize it, but that was some time ago. So I decided no matter what the contents were, it needed to go. I set it on the counter and it stared at me.
I tried to continue cleaning the fridge, but I could feel it taunting me, daring me to open it and see what lived inside. I kept cleaning, doggedly determined not to give in to its evil siren song. I knew that to open it would be to open the gates of Hell, from whence an unholy stench of decay would issue forth. So I ignored it.
But it persisted in taunting me, whispering “open me up, I am good….so good…you will love me….you want to see me….you know you do…..” and I felt myself weakening.
“How bad can it be?” I thought to myself. “It can’t be worse than the pancake mix of death.” With those thoughts in mind, I slowly turned to face my tormentor.
There it sat, innocuous in its white and green container. “Great Value” it proclaimed boldly to me, egging me on in my folly. I moved toward it as if in a dream, a nightmare really, as helpless to stop myself as a slumbering child. I picked up the container and tried one last time to resist. With all my will, I tried to force it to the garbage can, but it was too much for me and I was defeated. With trembling hands, I slowly pried the lid off and gazed in speechless horror.
What was in the container? Mere words cannot describe the horror within the white plastic walls. Some sort of beige, lumpy, watery substance stared back at me balefully, pulsing with an evil life force. “Stewed artichokes?” I thought wildly as I tried to process it. No, I don’t buy artichokes, let alone stew them. The smell was overwhelming and I fought back waves of nausea as I tried to force the lid back on while the contents snickered in unholy glee.
“you love me….don’t you?” it whispered evilly. I was whimpering, trying to keep the contents from emerging, when I tipped it a bit and some of the putrid liquid splashed on my arm. “NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO,” I screamed wildly, and I snapped the lid and staggered back, holding my arm.
I was panting like a dog, still trying to fathom just what in the hell was in that container. Hamburger Helper gone renegade? Sour cream that had curdled into some unspeakable alien life force? The world may never know.
I regained my composure and headed to the sink to rinse the goo of death off of my arm. The container was safely in the garbage with the lid snapped tightly. But even as I write this, a tiny voice calls to me, begging for freedom. Thank God tomorrow is garbage day!!!