Shepparton News

Fridge door a cool portal to chill zone

- MY WORD John Lewis john.lewis@ sheppnews.com.au John Lewis is a journalist at The News.

We bought a new fridge recently because the chief gardener said we needed more space for food and plants.

I agreed, but not about the need for more space. I need more time.

I reckon I have spent about 24 hours of my life standing at a fridge door wondering why I was there.

The opening of a fridge door can open a portal into a space-time continuum in which all decisions are suspended for eternity.

Facing a shelf of zucchinis, mushrooms and asparagus, I find myself asking ‘Why am I here? Where do I come from? Where am I going?’

I wait expectantl­y but no answer arrives.

Suddenly a message is delivered from the cerebellum: ‘‘You came here for baked beans.’’

And then I realise the baked beans are not, and never were, in the fridge. They were in tins in the cupboard all along. Silly me.

For a moment I forgot that

beans contain many good things, but not necessaril­y the meaning of life.

These fridge door moments can also occur in reverse. Instead of opening the door to look for something, the door is opened in order to put something away.

I have actually found a freezing kettle in the fridge.

It was placed there perhaps in the morning while I was distracted by mating kookaburra­s on the backyard fence.

Is this a sign of encroachin­g madness? Probably.

But it is an ordinary madness that does not live exclusivel­y among the over60s.

I have placed keys in cupboards, batteries in biscuit tins, and bookmarks in sock drawers all my life.

Children do this sort of thing all the time. I was heartened when I found that during the recent move to the new Shepparton Art Museum building, a curator discovered Lego blocks in ceramic pots.

They were probably dropped years ago by a curious young mind and then forgotten as the flood of new experience­s became too much.

Years later they were revealed as surreal ‘objets d’art’.

Fridge door moments can also provide illuminati­ng insights.

The moment the door opens and a jar of mayonnaise appears — that’s when you remember the name of the actor you watched in a film three nights previously.

The fridge door can also reveal a plot point you just didn’t get in a book or a film, or the name of the band that played the tune you’ve just been humming for two days.

But annoyingly, the fridge door can also deliver a f lash of inspiratio­n that provides the perfect comeback to somebody’s party joke last week.

The French have a phrase for this: l’esprit d’escalier ,or staircase wit. It’s the clever remark you think of on the staircase when leaving the party.

The French have a phrase for everything. Just wait until they come up with a neat phrase for abandoned submarine contracts. We’ll all be using it.

Yesterday a work colleague pointed me to a new stateof-the art fridge with a seethrough door.

All you have to do is knock twice on the opaque door and — just like Aladdin’s cave — all is revealed inside the fridge.

I thought, how dull. No more sublime fridge door moments. Just plain old mayonnaise.

 ?? Picture: Getty Images ?? The twilight zone? An open fridge door can be a portal into a space-time continuum in which all decisions are suspended for eternity.
Picture: Getty Images The twilight zone? An open fridge door can be a portal into a space-time continuum in which all decisions are suspended for eternity.
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