Posted in this&that

Refrigerator doors and work avoidance

I was on my way to clean out the refrigerator this morning when I got stalled looking at all the things posted and taped to the fridge door. (Proving, once again, that I’m highly skilled at work avoidance.)

While looking over the various cartoons, pictures and magnets stuck there I began to think about the things people put on their refrigerator doors.

I know most parents probably post their kid’s drawings and essays. My mom didn’t. She was one of those compulsively neat people; that’s probably why I’m not. That got me to wondering about the psychology behind being either cluttered or clean. Then, I found this

. . . one telling tidbit about what, typically, were overstuffed homes: the clutter on the fridge door tended to predict the amount of clutter elsewhere. ~ Lisa Belkin, Cluttered Fridge Doors, Cluttered Lives

Who is this Lisa Belkin?? I bet her fridge door and house are spotless and her life in total order at all times. Is she a psychologist? Is she hinting that my fridge door, house, and life are too cluttered and that’s something bad?

I like my cluttered fridge door. And, yes it is a pretty good indicator of the amount of clutter in my house. Not too much, not too little in my opinion. I have a few stacks of books and papers around the house, particularly near my desk. (By the way, at this point I’ve avoided cleaning out the fridge for a full hour.)

Do the majority of people tack things on their refrigerator doors or are the majority of them neat freaks? This is to be seriously considered; I need to know if I’m normal. This train of thought leads me to Google refrigerator images to determine how cluttered mine is, by comparison.

Ok, so I'm not this cluttered.
I'm definitely not this clean.









While searching the net I’m pleased to find Harold Shinitzky, PsyD, a clinical psychologist, who suspects that the woman whose refrigerator is shown on the right is very concerned that she live up to other people’s’ expectations, and she believes that every item in her home has a place — which is never on the fridge. “It’s an intentional, image-conscious reflection of how she wants others to view her.”

She’s obsessively compulsive I’m thinking, so I’m liking Harold, and he’s a real psychologist. Then, in the same article comes this from Lisa Jacobs, a life coach and certified home organizer for the National Association of Professional Organizers.

A crowded fridge is a sign of clutter, laziness and being old-fashioned.

What is it with these women named Lisa? Besides, she probably has to say things like that, considering that she works for an association that is professional at organizing.

It’s enough to send me back to bed with a good book. In the meantime, here’s the list of my fridge clutter.

6 cartoons, among them 1 about how to load your cat into a carrier without bleeding out, and 1 about being Charlie Sheen for Halloween.

1 small moon and star wind chime meant to remind me that every time I open the fridge door I do not have to take a bit of pie or some other sweet lurking inside.

1 drawing of the Mediterranean Food Pyramid which my doctor says is healthiest for a diabetic. I tend to disregard it because it doesn’t include the chocolate pudding in my fridge.

7 magnets including my favorite that says REDRUM.

If you’re still reading, I’ve now wasted 2 hours. I guess I’ll clean the fridge tomorrow.


I'm a writer making my way through life and offering observations as I go. Old enough to know better but that doesn't stop me.

12 thoughts on “Refrigerator doors and work avoidance

  1. Ack, I feel like I am going to go REDRUM crazy if I don’t see a picture of your refrigerator now. We put all of the inappropriate artwork our preschooler brings home on the refrigerator. There is also this totally obnoxious magnet that my MIL gave me with my name on it and my name’s “meaning.” I hate it, and I keep moving it to the side of the refrigerator where it’s out of sight and out of mind, but it keeps drifting back.

    And yes, our fridge is definitely as cluttered as our toy-filled house.

    1. I love it! Your house sounds as warm, comfortable and inviting as mine. Even with one husband, three cats, me, and no kids or grandkids my house is still cluttered. And, my refrigerator still isn’t cleaned out! Thanks for the comment.

  2. Our fridge is covered with magnets from all the different places we’ve visited. When we travel, that’s pretty much the main souvenir we bring home, as it gives us the memories but not the extra trinkets to clutter our home. I also have lots of magnet-framed family photos on my fridge.

    This would imply my fridge is cluttered, however, the magnets are lined up neatly as are the photos. So now I have no idea what that says about me!

    Fun post 🙂

    1. I think it says you have lots of fun as a family and if there’s clutter in your house it’s probably all tidy.(I love this psychology stuff!)

      Glad you liked the post. Thanks!

  3. This post had me cracking up. My refrigerator is posted with all kinds of stuff from business magnets, to a voodoo doll magnet with pins, pictures, a gazillion ‘word’ magnets that you can create your own strange sentences with. I have notes, note pads, fingerprints, dog nose prints and a magnet button from the University of Florida ‘Swamp’ that says ‘Don’t swallow’. Yeah, like to see Miss Lisa’s take on that one! LOL.

    My refrigerator indicates who my family is: funny, silly, crazy with a little touch of normalcy. They’re just the way I like them.

  4. The only magnet on my fridge right now is one from a friend that says “I’d stop eating chocolate…but I’m no quitter!”
    Other than that, the surface is pristine. (We won’t mention the plastic bag in the freezer, which has been carefully saving the rest of my treasures there since last week, when I expected company.)

    1. That’s funny! So, you DO care what people think…enough to hide your stash when expecting company! I’d psychoanalyze that but I do the same thing!

      Thanks for posting.

  5. When I changed my fridge to a brushed stainless steel looking one, I was horrified to discover magnets didn’t stick any longer. So, by default, I was forced to adopt the neat freak image conscious look. I thought I would miss the photos, the little reminders, the poems and phone numbers that had lived, undisterbed, on my old fridge. But I didn’t! And yes, the kitchen looks overall cleaner…

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