The Incident
I was in a Zoom meeting when I heard a steady, persistent, unsettling beep, beep, beep coming from the other side of the apartment. The meeting was a must-attend, so I didn’t investigate the noise right away. I hit the Zoom mute button to squelch the beeps and only unmuted to speak.

About an hour later I headed to the kitchen. The beeps were a warning from the refrigerator—it was’t cooling and was losing temperature. I’d heard the beeps once or twice before. On those occasions, one of us had left a door ajar for a moment or two.

This time though, the doors were solidly closed, but the inside of the box was not cold. Not cold at all. Yikes. I called Jacob and asked him to pick up a couple of bags of ice on his way home and headed downstairs to grab our chest cooler from storage.

The Triage
Harvesting the remaining ice from the freezer, I saved all of the unopened wedges of cheese and tossed the cold cuts and lox. Dairy products had to go, but there were some cured meats that would make the cut. Left-overs, salad dressings, and condiments were given the heave-ho.

The Emergency Eating
We’d been planning ahead for a couple of special dinners and had two nice-sized tins of Ossetra caviar in wait. I checked their time-temperature stickers. The green dots representing pristine condition were starting to move a little bit toward the green-yellow phase. While I hadn’t yet made my buckwheat blinis, the caviar needed to be eaten.

We had potato chips, so we improvised. Turns out that caviar on Lay’s Original Wavy chips are actually a thing. And a delicious thing.

Our refrigerator—only three years old when it crashed—has been repaired. And Jacob is headed to the market to refill its shelves, bins, and drawers this weekend. I’m thinking I should make a different sort of purchase.

And so it goes. And, so it goes.