Monday, October 06, 2008

The Crisper That Time (and I) Forgot

This weekend, a mystery was solved. A mystery that had been plaguing Adam and I for over a week. A mystery that has haunted my dreams and that I had spent countless hours trying futilely to get to the bottom of.

The Mystery of the Strange Smell in the Fridge.

I first noticed the smell last week. I opened the freezer to get some ice and noticed this faint chemical-y smell. Sniffing around, it seemed the ice cubes were the worst offenders so I dumped them, super cleaned the trays and replaced them in the freezer, assuming it was dealt with.

But the next day I noticed the fridge also had that smell. The best way to descrive it was it smelled like someone had spilled a gallon of vodka in the fridge which is weird since we don’t keep vodka in the house. I also noticed that day that the water in the Brita filter not only carried this vodka-esque smell but tasted vaguely like vodka too. Vodka kind of mixed with a chemical. Not exactly my kind of cocktail and pretty disgusting, basically. I drained the Brita, scrubbed it out and replaced the water and went on with my day.

The next day the smell was still there and a little worse. I got down to brass tax and removed every single item from the fridge, sniffing each one, and wiping everything down with Clorox wipes. I cleaned out the crisper and scrubbed that down. I then did the same with the freezer. Adam thought that it might be that one of the several ice packs we keep in the freezer was leaking so he threw those all out and we closed the case of The Strange Smell in the Fridge, confident the matter was dealt with.

But over the next few days the smell was back with a vengeance. I researched on Google to see what this could be? I pulled the fridge away from the wall to search for the source behind or under the fridge, and nothing (I did find my Jesus Christ Superstar CD though, so it was not a total loss). I tried to locate the defrosting tray to see if THAT was the culprit before finding out we don’t have one. I bought a few new boxes of baking soda, tore off the tops and placed them strategically throughout the fridge and freezer since Google deemed this the fail safe solution for weird fridge smells. That, finally, started to work.

For a little while.

And then on Friday I had to throw out a huge casserole I had made the night before, specifically so I would not have to cook this weekend, because the smell had contaminated the pasta and made it taste like that disgusting smell that now permeated my dreams. And I also had to throw out hamburger buns that were in the freezer beacuse they had acted as little smell sponges and reeked. So cleaning and bleaching out the fridge didn’t work. Checking behind and under the fridge didn’t work. Throwing out all of our ice packs didn’t work. Baking Soda didn’t work.

I felt hopeless. I was actually about to call my landlord even though I am loathe to call about stuff like this because it always seems to be some really simple solution that I should know the answer to which I learned thanks to the Incident In Which I Freaked Out About Blowing a Fuse and The Incident In Which I Didn’t Know There was a Thermostat In The Fridge.

Then, from the kitchen, Adam cried out “I FOUND THE SMELL”.

Them’s magic words.

Now, here is something I did not mention. Our fridge has two crispers. One large one on the bottom like most fridges and then a small one in the center of the middle shelf (it’s really space inefficient but that’s neither here nor there). In any case I have a mental block against this small crisper. I never see it. I don’t put things in it. I hardly know it’s there because it’s presence just doesn’t register with me, ever. Which would explain why the rotting limes inside of it totally escaped my Bleach The Whole Fridge Endeavor. And why this whole time the answer to my mystery was an open crisper away.

But seriously WHY do we need a small crisper in which nothing can really fit but rotting limes anyway? I blame the fridge manufacturer!

So be ye forewarned. If your fridge smells like vodka and you don't drink vodka, think back to your latest tequila shot and ask yourself "What did I do with those limes?".


Randall said...

Oh that "find the smell" hunt is the worst! I've had some bad limes before and it is amazing how stinky those little suckers can get - ew!

Lys said...

Hence why I no longer keep the limes that time forgot in the fridge and keep them in the fruitbowl on the counter...

Glad you found the cause of the "offending smell"...

Jenny said...

That sucks! We actually use that drawer all the time - I believe it's for deli meats and cheeses (at least that's what we use it for!) - but I realized this past week that it is completely space-inefficient. We lose an entire shelf under it!

Glad you found it - sucks about the casserole though!

Sarah said...

i know! And ours is really hard to open too which is another reason why we never use it. We should just take it out!

Rebecca Jill said...

It's the worst search to conduct, but it's always good to get to the bottom of a mystery like that. Great job y'all! Will make mental note about rotting limes and Vodka smell.

Sarah said...

haha yeah you pretty much have no choice but to get to the bottom of it!

Princess Extraordinaire said...

I am glad you found the culprit - mine has a particular *odor* who's source I can't seem to locate so I am on the hunt...