I cleaned the oven today, and, um, I don’t really have any amusing anecdotes about that. Spray on, grime off.
Oh, so here’s an idea. Now, a lot of the dirt in the oven came from my pizzas. See, I’m on this wack ass diet that keeps me from eating milk, so I was cheese-free for a couple weeks. No, it’s not some silly celebrity regime. I might be allergic to cow’s milk, corn, and a couple other yummy things besides. So I’m off all those things for a month to see if I feel better not eating them.
As one might imagine, I got tha cheese joneses real quick. Then, suddenly (well, not that suddenly, it took two weeks), I remembered goats made cheese too. Sheeps sometimes even. And after picking through put-near every cheese at Whole Paycheck, I found a couple good-sized hunks of a goat’s milk Gouda. It actually melts down real good, about the right amount of oil and it’s pretty sticky. Maybe a little more watery than ideal but better than I ever would’ve expected.
Okay, but turns out most pizza dough includes corn. So, I get these pizza shells made out of rice, which are a little gummy but plenty tasty. They are, however, real flat, and the tasty cheese (plus peppers, mushrooms, etc.) fall off and tumble to the bottom of the oven where they form little piles of goodness that, after not too long at 500° turn to chunks of carbon that smoke everything I roast or bake with a nasty acrid smoke.
The oven has a clean setting, but I can never get the “now cleaning” light to turn on. So I clean the darn thing by hand with a can of incredibly noxious oven cleaner. And two sponges, completely ruined with deeply copper-colored gunk.
But the oven’s clean, now, for an experiment in braised tofu. Updates to follow.
So today I cleaned part of the kitchen. Part of a whole new plan I’ve developed for myself to designate tasks around the house that I need to be doing and schedule them into free time that I’m not using to mellow out.
Now, when i was growing up, I didn’t really learn how to clean. Since as long as I can remember, my parents had someone to help out with the cleaning — reasonable since they both worked full-time. For pretty much my entire youth, until junior high or something, our maid was Charlene. I always found her skills to by mysterious and magical; I wasn’t the neatest, cleanest kid and that she could keep things clean, and make the kitchen floor slippery, and god save us, keep the hardwood floors shiny — clear signs of mythical abilities. My puny powers, in contrast, only involved the ability to mow the lawn, wash dishes, and often weasel out of taking out the trash.
Of course, filth was acceptable in college. Then, when I graduated, I got a job where they expected me to bill 40 hours by the end of Wednesday, so I didn’t have time to clean; I got a maid. And, when I moved and got my second job, I got another maid. And then, due to a run of bad luck involving a Palm Pilot, a burnt-out porch light and Las Vegas, I lost that maid. And then I had to keep things clean myself.
For two years, it’s been catch as catch can. And, frankly, every bit of the apartment’s just a little dirtier, just a little dustier, just a little dingier. That doesn’t sit well with me, especially since I have an incredibly wonderful and incredibly neat-and-clean girlfriend. And, now that I’ve grown up, now that I’m living on my own, I’ve given myself chores. Weekly chores. This week: the kitchen. I organized my oils and vinegars, my spices and a cabinet; I cleaned every inch of the stove; and I even turned the toaster upside-down and shook out all the years of crumbs. Mmmm crumbs.