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USA Today’s snapshot: What is your ‘pantry personality’?

It showed percentages for people who were neat, disorganized, a minimalist or a doomsday prepper. Just like my husband and I have an interfaith marriage, we have a mixed pantry.

I’m in the nice-and-neat percentage and he’s a doomsday prepper. It’s hard to keep things organized when you live with a prepper. So, basically all I do is organize the masses of stuff he buys. Recently I was kind of happy when pantry supplies started to run low as I could see the shelves. My husband saw empty space, panicked and ran to fill it. Rice-a-Roni was on sale so he bought 12 boxes. For us, that’s a year’s supply. Pasta was on sale and even though we didn’t need it, he bought it because “It never goes bad.” So, he brings the sh… I mean supplies home and I organize.

I do try to have some semblance of order in the pantry with tall stuff in back and short stuff up front. Although I’m not a fanatic, I do not alphabetize my spices. I organize the shelves I can reach. I can’t reach the top shelves. I want to know the person who designed ceiling-high cabinets, unreachable to the short person, and thought they were a good idea. A short person should be able to reach the top shelf in her own house. You should not have to get a ladder, chair or department-style pole to retrieve what you want. We have cabinets above our refrigerator that I have no idea what’s in them. My husband could be hiding money, knives, a small mistress or, my guess, Rice-a-Roni.

If grocery stores strategically stock sugary cereals for kids at eye level, why can’t home builders place cabinets at eye level?

Because then and only then will I know how many boxes of Rice-a Roni my husband has stored away.

— Cindy Argiento

Cindy Argiento is the author of Deal with Life’s Stress With a Little Humor. Her award-winning columns and essays have appeared in numerous newspapers and in two Chicken Soup for the Soul books. Click here for her blog.

Reflections of Erma