SO MANY – too many – PLATES

I’ve started worrying about the plates again.

I open the kitchen cabinet and there they are. A whole massive stack of them, like very white pancakes. Perfect. And there are, like, 26 of them. No, 20. No, 14. Either way, there are too many plates per family member (three of us in this house now) for them all to get used in between dishwasher loads. It can’t happen. Every day, I take three or four plates, now clean, out of the dishwasher and stack them back in the cabinet, on top of the tall pile of untouched plates, and I feel sad for them, the plates that only get used two, three times a year.

I worry, will the ones on top wear out before the ones on the bottom? The ones that keep getting used over and over and over again, day after day, while their unsullied counterparts remain lifeless, purposeless. I imagine them as Beauty and the Beast corpses. I see gleeful tea cups turning away in horror, all of their chipped but thriving relatives cringing in fear and disgust at the faceless plates.

Then I get angry. What’s the point? What’s the fucking point of these plates that we never use? Should I come in here and mix them up each week? But why would I do that? Am I crazy? Should I smash them, put them out of their misery? Should I, personally, use more plates? Shit. Why am I thinking about these things? Fuck. Do I truly, to the bone, have nothing better to do? And that’s the worst way to end because always, always the answer is, “Yes,” but then the mean, sulky, self-hating sycophant you kill hundreds of times a day whispers from the sticky depths which it has fled, “No. Now come back.”