When you live alone, there are certain staple items that take a long time to get through. Obviously, I am not talking about the perishable items, as they go bad long before I can finish them. I cannot tell you the last time I successfully finished a bag of salad. Every week or two, I throw out a half wilted bag of spinach and various leftovers and produce. I keep buying them on the off chance that one day I will beat the clock and finish the food before mold takes over. I never win a battle against mold. Even brownies have fallen victim to the greedy fungal tentacles. Heck, I even have to throw out freezer items from time to time; a sad feat, since most frozen goods have a 1-2 year shelf life.
Outside the world of perishable food, items can exist forever in a single gal’s house. October 2011 will mark a momentous event, the end of my Bounty napkins. In August 2006, I was a fresh faced college graduate about to start vet school. This was my first time living outside of a dorm, so I had a lot of supplies to buy. One of these staple items was a 200 count pack of Bounty Quilted Napkins. Yes folks, over 5 years (FIVE YEARS) later, I am down to the last dozen napkins. This pack of napkins has been one of the most consistent things in adult life. I have moved this package of napkins five times, across two time zones. These napkins have been bagged up, boxed up, moved in professional moving vans, and kept in a garage. They have been stored in pantries, drawers, and on kitchen tables. I have used them to set the tables of dinners I made for both serious relationships in my life. I shudder to think how many Lean Cuisines these napkins have been paired with. These napkins have seen me go from a Ms. to a Dr.
I can’t tell you why it has taken me over 1,885 days to use 200 napkins. Perhaps it is because my frequent dinners of half a can of corn don’t merit the use of a napkin. Or maybe it is my slightly pathetic tendency to reuse napkins on occasion (I know I did not live through the Great Depression, so this behavior is a bit unacceptable). I can’t explain why, but I do know that Bounty has been helping to clean up my mess since 2006 and I am very thankful for this. While I mourn the loss of this dear friend, I look forward to the next five years and the memories a new package of napkins can bring.
P.S. It only took me two years and three moves to finish my 150 load bottle of fabric softener !!!