Meewella | Fragments

The Life of P

Failures of the Dishwasher Generation

As strange as the things one can find around here are the others that are missing. Take, for example, the everyday washing-up sponge, it’s friendly hue of not quite yellow sprouting a crop of dark green scouring pad hair, here consigned to the base role of bathroom maintenance. Kirsten’s family rely primarily on the dishwasher, a devilish device I abhor.

While I agree its premise is sound, in practice it functions, as near as I can tell (given the steel door blocking sight of its active machinations), in the following way. Warm water is ingeniously applied to items held prisoner within its walls in order to subtly separate any dried on remainders of an earlier meal. So far so good. Its brilliantly engineered twin blades then proceed to hurl it around leaving an even coating on every dinner plate, steak knife and novelty coffee cup within its confines. In instilling a sense of the brutality of absolute equality it is unrivalled — art, even. In terms of cleaning, it sucks.

We spent the weekend in Hamburg visting Moni and Tommy. After a three hour train journey and a slight struggle with assembling her new bed (inherited from a colleague at work, it was missing a few vital bars) Saturday evening involved a great dinner party even though we (St. Pauli) narrowly lost the football (to Bayern Munich, which is perhaps to be expected). Kirsten seemed slightly worried that I was drinking alongside two much larger German men but I think I held my own respectably. In fact it seems my stomach was better suited than Tommy’s to the Tabasco-fuelled “Mexican” shots. Both he and Moni found themselves very ill the following day so sightseeing was cancelled in order to look after Moni in the flat. It was still a pleasant weekend away.


  1. Coming from the Culture of Inherent Laziness – I mean, America – that I do, I actually really like dishwashers. And I’ll tell you exactly why (and it’s not because I’m lazy) ;).

    Dishwashers don’t really serve you as well as good, old-fashioned elbow grease would. As most people who own dishwashers now, you really have to mostly “wash” the dishes before they go in the dishwasher anyway…but then they become super-clean once they’ve come out. AND dishwashers provide a nice, out-of-the-way cabinet in which to super-wash, and then dry, your dishes, which you can then just put away at your convenience. Maybe it’s just because the dishwasher at my parents’ house is good, but it really does wash the dishes, without too many spots (and without requiring a stupid amount of pre-washing).

    That being said, I have no problems with washing dishes, I really don’t. There’s something truly satisfying about washing a huge pile of dirty dishes.
    But then having to put them on a rack, which takes up counter space, or dry them by hand, which takes forever, is kind of annoying. A dishwasher eliminates that.
    It also eliminates the age-old debate over whether one should wash dishes in standing water in the sink or in running water from the tap. Because, really, if you wash the dishes in standing water, by the time you get to the end, aren’t you just washing dishes in dirty water?
    Yes. Yes, you are.

    P.S. Notice how I actually thought about it and used the “em” tags? 😀

  2. I see water’s prime utility as a drinking/cleaning aid and being that I don’t waste my share on lounging in it recreationally or filling vast tanks to swim up and down ad infinatum, I feel perfectly justified in keeping the water running while I do a stack of dishes so I have no qualms there regarding not soaking my dishes in dirty water.

    And I agree, handwashing dishes can be satisfying if not directly proportional to the size of your stack. I find it calming provided I have my choice of music to hand.

    The space issue is one of the few valid defences for the automated dishwashing beast. However, at least at home, what else would I do with the the vast deserts of space the sink provides on either side for drying. Removing a dishwasher instead allows cupboard space for marshmallows, Oreos and mango pickle (it’s better than it sounds).

    P.S. Yes, I’m very impressed.

  3. OREOS!!!! Screw the dishwasher!

  4. Well, yes, if it comes down to choosing between the dishwasher and oreos, I’d choose Oreos anyday.

    And at my parents’ house, we have this convenient, uber-wide windowsill which happens to be right above the sink, which serves as the greatest dish-drying area ever.
    But still. Dishwashers are cool.

  5. It doesn’t suck. He’s just inflexible and doesn’t like change. I should have bought you a sponge. Maybe you’d become good friends…

  6. Friends with the sponge? I was told it was a small village, but surely not that small.

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"Civilization now depends on self-deception. Perhaps it always has."

(CC) BY-NC 2004-2024 Priyan Meewella

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