Saturday, January 28, 2017

How to Be a Condo Owner, Part Four: Don't Fear the Oven

When I took possession of Casa Meg, it was with cash in hand from closing to buy a new oven range.

Just in case you have forgotten how disgusting the stove was--I have not--here is a photo reminder:

And this wasn't even why I demanded a new oven out of the deal--the oven on that piece of filth didn't work.

With the old one disconnected and hauled off by The Junk Kings, I bought my new one at Sears, where they are always reliable with household appliances. It's not very fancy, just your standard Kenmore with gas stove. But when it went in, the difference was astounding. No more filthy stove staring at me, and finally I could cook.

Except for one small, annoying detail--the smoke detector.

For a nine hundred square-foot home, I have a lot of smoke detectors. I know there are laws and regulations, so I don't complain. Still, it seems excessive to have that one on the ceiling about six feet away from the oven when there's another one just on the other side of the bedroom door. And another one about six feet away in the living room. And one about fifteen feet from the living room one in the get the picture.

The kitchen one is particularly temperamental.The first time I turned my new oven on, it went wild from the chemical smell that happens any time you use a brand-new oven for the first time. I ran around opening windows and running fans and waving a dishtowel over my head, and it just kept going off.

In September, I had my parents over for dinner. They offered to bring a take-and-bake pizza, so before they arrived, I heated the oven...which promptly set off that damned smoke detector again. After that, I was simply afraid to use my brand-new oven because no one likes loud, high-pitched screeching while they're trying to cook dinner. So I stopped using it.

I have a stove and a microwave, and I eat a lot of salad.

But come on. I like to be able to bake, too.

It was Dad who had the idea to use a food storage cover. Bless Zip-loc for creating those little dish covers that look like shower caps. Mom gave me a small one from her store and I brought it home several weeks ago. Today, I finally gave it a go and whaddayaknow, I heated my oven to 400 degrees and have had a quiche in there for half an hour now with not a peep from my smoke detector.

I've missed quiche.

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