Until last week, the notion that I would spend my Friday taking pictures of my fridge and then sending them to a stranger named John in Los Angeles seemed a bit, well, unlikely. And yet, here I am, opening an email from him four days later, all eyes.
John Stonehill, I should make clear, is a refrigerator expert, and of a very specific sort. He looks in people’s cool boxes and matches them on the basis of what they have inside. He is a “refrigerator dating expert”, much in demand on American television, who is working with a production company here to turn his fridge-based skill into a television show. “The show,” says Stonehill, “will bring together the UK’s three favourite pastimes: dating, eating and, of course, judging people.”
The thesis behind what he does is pretty straightforward. He points out that most of our dating revolves around eating and drinking. So a fridge is a window on the soul, as you can, by opening the door, learn about someone’s health, lifestyle and income. And match them up.
So, what did he say about me? Well, first of all he centred on the fact that next to my fridge is a DeLonghi coffee machine. From this he drew two conclusions. First, that I liked coffee (true); second, that I am financially secure (hmm…). The sense of financial security was further embedded in his mind when he saw my fridge’s contents. “Tropicana orange juice – far more expensive, and tastier, than generic; Heinz ketchup – if you can’t afford the extra 80p for Heinz, [you should] move back in with your parents.”
He points out that I don’t have many generic brands in the fridge (thank goodness!). “When it’s all generic, it’s a red flag. As we all know, money doesn’t buy happiness. But if someone can cover their rent, it does make building a life with them much easier down the road,” he says. He also feels that my second, even posher bottle of ketchup, bodes well. “Most of us don’t have more than one kind of ketchup. One of your ketchups is organic, too. What can I say? Eskimos have multiple words for snow, foodies have multiple kinds of ketchup,” he says. The lack of beer and junk-food also leads him to the correct assumption that I am not much of a sports fan.
Up until this point, his deductions have been fairly open to dispute, but then he goes on to point out that my fridge is, well, really a bit of a mess. “I can’t call you Captain Chaos, but this fridge could use some cleaning up and organisation. This is a clue that you might be a bit crazed with your life and career, don’t have time to organise and thus is not on top of things,” he says. To this I bow my head in shame.
It’s OK, though, because his next bit of sizing up has me raising my head in pride once more. “The fridge itself is relatively clean and the veggies appear fresh, thank God. If one shows poor hygiene here, they probably do elsewhere as well.” The best comes last, though: “Eating healthy… thus, you probably look good naked. (he’s got a bodacious bod.)”
So, there we go. I should drop my other life plans and go after a slightly chaotic non-sports fan who enjoys organic ketchup and coffee by the bucketload. Perhaps the cliché is right: we are, indeed, exactly what we eat.Reuse content