Good thing: Refrigerator licking


One afternoon in 1965 I licked the refrigerator. Close to the floor, where the top of the plastic ventilator screen doesn’t quite meet the bottom of the metallic door. A shy tip of flesh flicking metal, then plastic, then extending, slowly but with gathering confidence, to find the essence of the white monolith.

It’s a childhood thing. An early toddler thing, actually. Like so many things, universal exploration begins at home. In the kitchen, right down there on the linoleum.

The white metal cool on the topside, the black grille warm and oddly pliable on the bottom. Both sides had the same taste:  dirt laced with metal shavings or some other industrial byproduct. Grease, I suspect. Job done, I withdrew and crawled off to points unknown. Either that or I just lowered my head and drifted off into the hum of the machine’s chemical exhalation.


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