Things You May Actually Already Know

There have been several things I have wanted to blog about here, but let me be frank and say that I do not actually “have my shit together” as the kids say, and so I’ve not updated. I will save those things for another day. Today, I want to talk about dishwashers.

Most people have their own, specific way to load a dishwasher. Maybe you learned as a child, but maybe your family didn’t have a dishwasher until you were out of high school and your mom thought it funny to say that she “didn’t need a dishwasher! I have eight dishwashers right here!”. Maybe you had a rudimentary knowledge of dishwashers but needed your wife to teach you that anything made of wood most definitely does NOT go into the dishwasher, and yes that includes wooden spoons. Maybe you are neurotic about alternating between glasses and plastic cups on the top rack. Maybe you’re all about silverware eating-side up. Maybe down. Maybe you’re a complete psychopath and just toss all the silverware all every-which-a-way. Which actually kind of makes me a little queasy just thinking about it.

There are a few rules I think most of us can agree upon:

1. Don’t put sharp knives in there, it’ll ruin the blades.
2. Always put anything plastic on the top rack.
3. Don’t put anything wooden in it. (And yes, honey, my wooden cutting boards are made of wood.)
4. Rinse off enough food so that you don’t end up with a rotten mushroom on bottom of the dishwasher for the past 5 days, just sitting there waiting to dissolve into mush and go down the drain because I sure as hell am not reaching in there and picking up that nastiness.
5. Uhhh. Don’t have a 5th. I just really really couldn’t leave it at four.

Sometimes we ignore these rules. You accidentally put a sharp knife in there and it’s still nice and sharp afterward. You throw a plastic bowl on the bottom rack cause the top rack is full and you really don’t feel like washing anything by hand. It cleans just fine.

Beware, however. If you get too complacent, you may just start throwing things in willy-nilly: plastic, glass, non-stick, whatever. And then one day you may empty the refrigerator of leftovers from the past 2 months. And find yourself with a crap-ton of tupperware and makeshift tupperware. And decide that you’re just going to throw everything in cause WHAT THE HELL YOU LIVE BY NO MAN’S RULES.

It’s possible, should you find yourself in this situation, that you will detect a slightly burnt smell a short while later. “Damn.” you will think. “Burned the damn dinner again.” Upon closer inspection, you realize you haven’t actually started cooking dinner, and are pretty sure you didn’t chop the vegetables so fast that they may have spontaneously combusted.

But is it? Could it be the dishwasher? Did I put something wooden in there?!?!?!

No. Just plastic. Melty, melty, molten plastic. Cause I put it on the bottom rack and it fell down through the thing and sat down on the bottom of the dishwasher.

Reminded me of those sporks I used to melt in middle school.

Did you know that black ring around the bottom of the dishwasher is actually a heat coil? Preliminary polls show that 2 out of 2 adults in the LaMartina household did not.

Well, it totally is. Also, don’t touch it. Or the melty plastic. Both will instantly burn the shit out of your finger with their hot hot heat, and then blister up like a mo-fo.

Ok. Maybe I’m exaggerating the extent of my injury. But it does sting.

Lessons we have learned today:

1. The lids to those black plastic Chinese take-out containers are just not worth saving.
2. Don’t touch molten things.
3. If you try to squeeze too many glasses into the top rack, one of them will explode. (I actually learned this one a different day, I just couldn’t find a way to work it in until now.)

On the up side, I’ve got a cleaned out fridge AND clean dishes. Boo-yah, grandpa.

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