I need to tell you my deepest darkest kitchen secret:
I do not like a range hood.
I hate them all.
I particularly detest the massive monument-to-wasted-space that has become a bizarre status symbol; like mounting a Range Rover over your stove.
Sure, you can choose one that is low-profile, but that would be in direct opposition to the opportunity to install an oversized jet-engine, directly in the place your face goes while standing at the stove.
Although obviously, (like any sensible person) I would trade a good portion of my soul for this kitchen.
Those sentences above are the beginning of a post I started months ago… Back when I thought I could withstand the scorn of the internet if I chose to not waste money and space on an appliance that I will never use.
I have since begun to fear the wrath of the Appropriate-Cooking-Evaluators: a band of angry militants who patrol the internet for violations which offend them personally; and who believe that forgoing a direct-vented range hood is akin to voluntarily injecting yourself with Ebola virus— unbelievably stupid.
Like this kitchen below– so terrible! Let’s take a moment to reflect on how badly we feel for these people that their kitchen is so subpar!
I’m practically BLIND FROM HOW HORRIBLE THIS IS.
So why would I consider an about-face from hood-denier to herd-animal; when my preferred response to scorn and judgment is always to dig in my heels and run forward towards the executioner?
I guess the internet has broken me.
Specifically, a particular element to the internet that pervades every single topic that people can possibly form an opinion about: the mindset that there is ONLY ONE GOOD ACCEPTABLE WAY to do something that has zero impact on anyone else’s life.
The ONLY ONE GOOD ACCEPTABLE WAY people believe ONE THING, and then that is ALL THEY BELIEVE and they make it their life’s work to make sure anyone not doing THE WAY is immediately disqualified from life, clapped in irons, and dragged to the town square to be flogged for idiocy.
Which, upon reflection, is the source of all human conflict through history: your own opinions are fine, but other people’s are moronic and intolerable and deserving of the flaming cannonballs with chains.
Unless they happen to agree with you, in which case they are well-informed.
The ONLY ONE GOOD ACCEPTABLE WAY people’s initial input is well-meaning! (If bordering on didactic and unhinged.)
But if you fail to PROPERLY HEED THEIR WARNING AND APPRECIATE THEIR WISDOM…they become enraged.
WHY! Why would someone WHO HAS BEEN WARNED!! Fail to instal a direct-vent range hood???
Look at THESE IDIOTS! Living without a range hood!
I am thinking specifically of a kitchen-chatboard thread, where a woman explained that it was IMPOSSIBLE to direct-vent her range hood. And she wondered if (seeing as how she couldn’t direct vent,) could she just skip the questionably-effective-substitute-which-is-essentially-just-a-fan and install a light fixture she had fallen in love with.
It was the light fixture of her dreams! A design element that would bring her peace and joy and goodwill towards all! A lamp that would improve her very existence on earth and she could die happy because SHE HAD THE BEST LAMP.
The responses varied… but there were an ALARMING number of respondents who were EXTREMELY BOTHERED by the fact that this woman was not gutting her kitchen to the studs and reconfiguring everything towards the goal of direct-venting the range hood… and she should probably just go out and rent a bulldozer THAT VERY NIGHT and knock it all down to the ground while flagellating herself for having considered any other option.
They basically went on to suggest that she was a filthy, squalor-dwelling subhuman moron.
And as I read on and on and on… I have to tell you that I was AMAZED at the PASSION total strangers were bringing to disparaging this woman and her lamp… I mean, who has time for lengthy screeds decrying other people’s DESIGN CHOICES?
And then I was EVEN MORE AMAZED at how these people do not realize that they look like flaming lunatics.
My FAVORITE response was from a woman who wrote:
This one time, we didn’t have a range hood, and we had to THROW AWAY ALL OF OUR BELONGINGS INCLUDING THE FURNITURE after one month BECAUSE THEY SMELLED SO FOUL AND HORRIBLE from non-vented cooking odors.
I don’t know about you… but that does NOT sell me on a vent… it DOES, however, make me wonder WHAT THIS WOMAN IS MAKING FOR DINNER.
Anyway. All of this is to explain that I do not want a range hood.
But that I am thinking about it anyway.
Because of the internet.
And I am mad about it.
The way I’ve decided to deal with this irritating anxiety that MY kitchen in MY house designed to MY preferences might draw the ire of some random stranger on the internet is to turn it over to you.
Here’s what you need to know: our township construction code does not require one. I will not have an eight-burner stove outgassing 67 billion btu’s/therms/whatever other specs.
Ok! GO FOR IT!
This is your chance!
I WASH MY HANDS.
And if you fail to draw me out from the cave and convince me of the shadows on the wall, then you must return to your war room and inform the other ONLY ONE GOOD ACCEPTABLE WAY-ers that your method is flawed.
Please make a good argument! Definitely do not include information like this: you NEED a hood!
Because: SURPRISE! I do not!
I can prove that to you because we HAD a hood! It was direct-vented!
And I NEVER USED IT.
I never used it SO MUCH that I had Paul take it out.
Every single night I was like— WHY IS THIS THING RIGHT IN MY FACE?
Until eventually I was like– Plague of nonsense, BE GONE!
p.s.— save some outrage for the post where I explain how I’m thinking of not having a freezer.
VEB, squalor-dwelling subhuman moron, esq.