Rags of Light

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Kitchen reform. This from the good Roden Newsletter moved me to take a hard look at the kitchen. I spend a lot of time there, but am always looking for a little puddle of counter space to do some basic task. Maybe it doesn’t have to be that way.

Something I’ve done since Quarantine Times began was rearrange my kitchen. I set a budget of $100 and went about rethinking what the hell was going on in there. It had been 3 years since I moved into my current studio/home and hadn’t once taken a second to reconsider why stuff had defaulted to where it defaulted to. Regardless, it was mega inefficient, but it wasn’t until I took literally five minutes to kind of blur my eyes and step back and go just how am I using this space?? to see what was wrong. Suddenly all the cracks were visible. I got a couple of organizational buckets and racks and I’ll be damned if those changes haven’t paid smile dividends (yes, you read me correctly: SMILE DIVIDENDS) day after day. They also lightened the cognitive “activation energy” of cooking, meaning I’m more inclined to whip something up. Now I stand in the kitchen and go: You ding-dong, why didn’t we do this years ago? And also: What else can we do this to?

This is, to a degree, what Marie Kondo was espousing with her “Method.” By undermining the inefficiency of your default systems, you can create a lightness of being, you can spark joy. But Kondo espouses with a militant edge — I WILL MAKE YOU BETTER YOU DIRTY BEAST. To be sure: I believe this tone was critical to the success of her books — you feel taken care of, and you feel seen — for you probably know that you’re a dirty, dirty beast. But — I mean, sure, you can be militant about this stuff, or you can just cultivate awareness little by little and have fun with it. Every day, try to find one little bit of annoyance in the apartment/home/shack and shift it. Do this for 30 days and you’ll have an entirely new home in spirit, if not possessions.

(emph. added)