What rhymes with putrid?

April 16th, 2013 · 52 comments

Having only worked at this office for a short time, Kay in Houston doesn’t know exactly what “The Fish Smell Invasion of 2012” refers to, “but being familiar with what happens in shared fridges,” she says, “I can guess.”

I was going to write a cutesy poem with lots of rhyming words, like old, mold, and other -old words. It was pretty terrible, so you're welcome I didn't write it. Instead, please take a quick peek in the fridge/freezer and see if something in here is yours and can be tossed. Also, um, that giant foil thing of food? The Fish Smell invasion of 2012 shall not be repeated.

And as an extra special bonus: my (procrastinatory) ode to “The Fish Smell Invasion of 2012″ —

related: Passive-Aggressive Poetry Corner

FILED UNDER: odor · office fridge · pure poetry

52 responses so far ↓

  • #1   Roto13

    I’ve noticed that rhyming notes are pretty much universally douchey, so good decision, notewriter.

    Apr 16, 2013 at 6:14 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #2   Tesselara

    “Fish Smell Invasion” reminds me of a dirty joke I heard when I was in middle school.

    Apr 16, 2013 at 6:24 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #3   H for Toy

    Do you have to let it linger?

    Apr 16, 2013 at 6:27 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #3.1   Dalamara

      I thought nothing could go wrong, but I was wrong, I was wrong.

      Apr 16, 2013 at 11:03 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #3.2   Skyle

      Do you have to, do you have to, do you have to…

      Apr 18, 2013 at 9:24 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #4   LI

    Which is more effective in ticking people off: throwing out everything nasty looking/smelling (containers and all) without warning or leaving notes like this and expecting people to actually deal with their rotting food?

    Apr 16, 2013 at 6:32 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #4.1   PinkPlaidRibbon

      Well “nasty looking/smelling” is subjective. Personally I find a lot of ethnic food my co workers bring in (even fresh through take out) looks nasty and smells gross to me. Just throwing people’s stuff out with out warning is unfair, you’ve got to give them a chance to clean it. If after a few days or week it’s still there, then it’s free game to toss.

      Apr 16, 2013 at 8:18 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #4.2   SeeYouInTea

      lol “ethnic food”

      Apr 17, 2013 at 1:02 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #4.3   Bee Good

      You know; Ethnic food: food with taste. Pink Plaid probably thinks Rooster Siracha was used in a scene from Zero Dark Thirty.

      Apr 17, 2013 at 10:31 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #4.4   H for Toy

      I don’t know. My nose can no longer differentiate the smell of curry from the smell of body odor, because it has been so often intermingled in my personal experience. But then, I enjoy sauerkraut, which is something lots of people can’t stand the thought of. It’s all subjective. And anything could be considered ethnic, depending on what you’re used to.

      Apr 17, 2013 at 11:08 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #4.5   redheadwglasses

      I absolutely disagree that there is any obligation to warn people. You put a container of a perishable item into a community fridge. Keep your eye on it. A week from now, after you’ve forgotten about it and it’s fuzzy, I’m tossing it, and your $10 Tupperwear container.

      Apr 17, 2013 at 11:19 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #4.6   The Elf

      Damn straight, Bee Good. If loving the Hot Cock Sauce is wrong, I don’t want to be right.

      Apr 17, 2013 at 12:46 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #4.7   Amelia

      Please tell me that I’m not the only one who gets really irritated when people use the word ‘ethnic” to mean “non-white.” EVERYONE has an ethnicity!

      Apr 17, 2013 at 8:02 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #4.8   Jen

      “A week from now, after you’ve forgotten about it and it’s fuzzy, I’m tossing it, and your $10 Tupperwear container.”


      The mouldy food sure, but not the container. You still have to respect other people’s belongings, whether it’s an expensive glass container, or just tupperware.

      Apr 18, 2013 at 6:33 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #4.9   The Elf

      In a office fridge, the boss/office manager should establish the rules. Those rules should be straight-foward, clear, and widely distributed of course. If that means the designated fridge cleaner (that poor bastard) is allowed to toss containers, then they’re allowed to toss containers.

      Don’t like it, don’t use the office fridge. I don’t.

      Apr 18, 2013 at 7:19 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #4.10   jazzgirl205

      It’s not “white.” People from Anglo back grounds use ethnic a lot. I’m Irish/Greek/Mexican and I had to break my DH from using it. He used to say things like, “Your sisters have an ethnic look but you don’t.” Every look is an “ethnic look.”

      Apr 18, 2013 at 8:52 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #4.11   Lil'

      I think “ethnic” in reference to food just means non-American, not non-white (in America anyway). As a bi-racial woman, I must say, it’s annoying that everything sparks racial controversy. Relax. You can say ethnic, you can say black, you can say N…wait, you can’t say that.

      Apr 18, 2013 at 9:55 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #4.12   The Elf

      I doubt if anyone brought in French or Italian food it would be called “ethnic”. But neither would traditional soul food, Tex-Mex, or Americanized Chinese take-out, so there’s that. And I think lutefisk would raise anyone’s hackles, even though it’s a Scandinavian (white) dish that made it’s way to the Midwest United States.

      I think the use of “ethnic” here is less about race or nationality and more about “it looks/smells weird to me”.

      Apr 18, 2013 at 10:05 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #4.13   Amelia

      As a fellow mixed race woman, I wasn’t trying to spark “racial controversy.” My irritation stems from the fact that calling something “ethnic food” is basically meaningless since all foods are associated with an ethnicity or at the very least a particular culture. And of course anyone CAN say anything they want, but it doesn’t mean that what they say is reasonable.
      @ The Elf
      Maybe non-white wasn’t the best term to use, but it is how “ethnic” has been used in my experience, although I must admit I haven’t had many food conversations about lutefisk, although I have definitely heard Americanized Chinese takeout referred to as “ethnic food.”

      Apr 18, 2013 at 11:19 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #4.14   H for Toy

      So, just for fun, I looked up the definition of ethnic on Merriam-Webster.com. The first definition? Heathen, which, in turn, is defined as strange and uncivilized. Which makes all that moldy food in the fridge “ethnic”.

      Apr 18, 2013 at 12:28 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #4.15   Tesselara

      H for Toy, that was awesome.

      Apr 18, 2013 at 12:51 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #4.16   Beatus Mongous

      I agree with The Elf. Most people use the term “ethnic” to mean “different from my own culture.”

      Of course, mold is a culture of its own…

      I love trying foods from different countries.

      I laughed once when a friend was telling me how he won’t eat sushi because it’s raw fish while he was putting lox and cream cheese on a bagel. I also got a laugh while a coworker was eating ceviche, and telling me she’d never eat sushi because it’s uncooked. I know, some ceviche can have cooked fish, but this one was cured and not cooked.

      Apr 18, 2013 at 1:21 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #4.17   The Elf

      Heathen? That’s another term for Asatru religion, which is going back to the old Norse beliefs. We have now gone full-circle.

      I don’t think I’m going to be able to look at the office fridge without singing Led Zepplin’s “Immigrant Song”.

      Apr 18, 2013 at 2:26 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #4.18   H for Toy

      Please tell me it’ll be out loud, and not just in your head.

      Apr 19, 2013 at 7:25 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #5   nunavut guy

    And all the soap this side of hell won’t wash away that fishy smell……………….

    Apr 16, 2013 at 6:46 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #6   Looopy

    Oh how I hate Hester
    So I let the fish fester

    Just for the Halibut.

    Apr 16, 2013 at 7:02 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #6.1   Jami

      And now I’m thinking of former Storage Wars “star” Dave Hester. Thank you so much.

      (Actually, I’ve had the displeasure of dealing with him before he was a star. Rags To Riches was in my neighborhood. He’s just that bad, if not worse, IRL.)

      Apr 16, 2013 at 9:46 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #6.2   VM

      I went to the Rose Bowl Flea Market in Pasadena just last Sunday. There, outside of the flea market enclosure itself but right on the pathway to the ticket booths, were a few tables laden with crappy items under a canopy emblazoned YUUPPPPPPP. And he* was flogging hats and t-shirts with that ejaculation of his printed on them, and undoubtedly some of tablecrap too to those dazzled by the cut-rate celeb glamor into purchasing the dregs of storage lockers that no one would want elsewise. Ugh.

      *at least it looked like him, I didn’t want to venture close enough for positive I.D.

      Apr 16, 2013 at 11:04 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #6.3   The Crazed Spruce

      Good to know that the fervent desire to punch that guy in the face that’s been building in me for the past couple of years is completely justified. So yeah, thanks for that….

      Apr 17, 2013 at 3:48 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #6.4   Jami

      You should read my Yelp review on the store.

      There’s a reason I called it “Over Priced Junk.”

      Apr 17, 2013 at 10:36 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #6.5   H for Toy

      Man, now I really hate that guy!

      Apr 17, 2013 at 11:10 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #7   Tard

    One time when someone put up one of those “move it or lose it” notices on the company fridge, I brought in all the festering crap from my home fridge and put it in there, But removed the festering crap that was in the company fridge.

    Sure enough, they noticed that I had swapped out old crap for new crap And started a campaign to discover who did it.

    Apr 16, 2013 at 8:35 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #7.1   CupKat

      You sound like a very mature person who is a real pleasure to work with.

      Apr 16, 2013 at 9:17 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #7.2   Laura S.

      That seems like a lot of work for very little gratification.

      Apr 16, 2013 at 9:30 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #7.3   Roto13

      Why do you even have festering crap in your home fridge?

      Apr 16, 2013 at 10:32 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #7.4   Lil'

      Did you take the festering crap from the work fridge home? It just seems like the natural next step in this story.

      Apr 17, 2013 at 7:57 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #7.5   The Elf

      For occassions like this, of course.

      Apr 17, 2013 at 8:22 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #7.6   My name is Princess!

      Ah. You are the reason I only gave 8 hour refrigerator cleaning warnings.

      Side note: I am sure dinners at your place are just fabulous as long as you don’t open your fridge.

      Apr 17, 2013 at 9:45 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #7.7   redheadwglasses

      Gross. WHy would you even bother transporting garbage in your car in that manner?

      I’m calling shenanigans.

      Apr 17, 2013 at 11:23 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #8   redheadwglasses

    IF it’s gone bad, THROW IT AWAY WITHOUT WORRY. I’m the fridge nazi here at work, and people will complain about moldy leftovers being thrown away. “It was still good! I was going to eat that!” Right. You’ve never eaten a single food item out of any of the styrofoam leftover containers. YOu go out for lunch every single day. Shut up and stop stinking up the fucking fridge.

    Apr 17, 2013 at 11:16 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #9   Eileen

    Unfortunately, the woman who usually cleaned out our work fridge when she couldn’t stand it anymore (about once a month or so) retired in October, and no one else has stepped up to take over the job.
    I confess to having left half a bottle of soda overnight a few times, but nothing that will rot. Unlike the people who leave half-full bottles of salad dressing for weeks on end. No one uses that stuff! Take it home!

    Apr 17, 2013 at 4:57 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #9.1   Amelia

      Am I crazy or are bottles of salad dressing entirely reasonable items to leave in the fridge for a long period of time? It isn’t like you are meant to use the whole bottle in one serving and it doesn’t go bad within a few weeks in the fridge.

      Apr 17, 2013 at 8:09 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #9.2   Risha

      I can’t think of a single bottled salad dressing that won’t last for months. It’s like saying not to leave a bottle of ketchup in the fridge for weeks on end.

      Apr 17, 2013 at 9:21 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #9.3   JoDa

      Yeah, Amelia, I agree that a bottle of salad dressing should be left for a while. It has, what, 15 servings in it? So if I bring a salad EVERY DAY, it will last 3 weeks, and its expiration date is probably a year away. I shouldn’t have to tote it back and forth every day because some crazy person thinks the fridge should be 100% clear every night at 5 PM. Surely the fridge-cleaner keeps dressings and other things with a long life in their fridge for longer than a day (or week, or even month…I’m pretty sure my bottle of ketchup is over 6 months old, and I used it recently and it was fine).

      Apr 17, 2013 at 9:21 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #9.4   L

      Plus you’re supposed to keep that kind of thing in your fridge once you open them…

      Apr 18, 2013 at 6:15 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #10   Logically

    At my old job, everything in the fridge was thrown out on Friday nights. You left it, you lost it.

    Apr 18, 2013 at 5:03 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #10.1   redheadwglasses

      I love this policy. It avoids all the problems that lead to a stinky fridge.

      Apr 18, 2013 at 7:34 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #11   redheadwglasses

    If you’re bored, head back to the Will/jenni/lightbulb/roommates letter (very recent). Jenni has weighed in.

    Apr 18, 2013 at 1:38 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #11.1   H for Toy

      Speaking of checking out old notes; Andrew from the Internet chimed in back at his most recent note to inform us that he can find us all (Elf and I in particular) through our fictitious screen names. He should be able to find you too, redhead. I mean, how many red heads with glasses can there be in the world, right?

      Apr 18, 2013 at 3:15 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #11.2   Jami

      Wow, Andrew has such a sad, pathetic life he’s now threatening the PANers? Oy vey! Someone needs to get some therapy.

      Apr 19, 2013 at 3:21 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #12   Joe Blow

    My work supposedly cleans out the fridge every Friday. Except they don’t, they clean it out every couple of months. Most of the time, they give you a warning halfway through the week that everything will be cleaned out of the fridge on Friday. So, most weeks, you’re usually ok leaving an extra soda you didn’t drink or some extra lunch you plan on finishing next week there over the weekend, as long as they haven’t announced they’re cleaning that week.

    Except when they randomly decide to just throw everything out, container and all, opened or unopened, with no warning. If you don’t enforce the policy consistently, it’s hard for people to know what to expect..

    Apr 18, 2013 at 1:48 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #13   JoDa

    Our fridges are cleaned the last business day of each month, which seems reasonable. Of course, you don’t really have to worry about leaving anything, because we have a really gung-ho food thief, and you can wager that anything left in there for more than a few hours will be swiped. They recently renovated half of our building, and we were lucky enough to get moved to the renovated space, which includes some spiffy kitchens. Our first week in that office space I made the mistake of bringing in a few pieces of fruit and a bottle of salad dressing…all of which disappeared by the next morning. I was doing a “goddamnit” recently when my lunch went missing (leftovers…the thief is gross enough that they will eat things that others have clearly touched) and heard from another woman about numerous missing items from people in her group, including, apparently, an entire bottle of coffee creamer and a week’s worth of frozen entrees. I think it’s time to print a bunch of stuff from this site and plaster the kitchen.

    Or find the culprit and send him to an office where people let things fester. Two birds, meet my stone.

    Apr 20, 2013 at 10:02 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up


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