Commitment Issues

I can’t commit to plates.

I have a cupboard full of mixed and unmatched plates from various thrift stores that I’ve collected over the past 4 years. I love them all as individuals, but don’t love a single one of them enough to buy all of my plates in that pattern.

I can’t commit to plates. Dinnerware is serious. It says something about you – it’s a way to define yourself, an expression of your identity.

I’m not ready for my own pattern yet.

I’m almost ready. I know myself. I just know that I can’t handle a decision like this right now.

My friend Nicole was visiting me this weekend. We went shopping and she steered me towards the plates. I looked at a lot of nice plates and walked away. I just couldn’t settle.

I like blue and white. But do I like it enough to say that blue and white can peek through my food at me every night? Will blue and white be on the underside of my guests forks and knives at every party? Will blue and white comfort me like my dark brown plate or cheer me up like my rose pattern and gold trimmed plate? Or, are blue and white too safe? Will I no longer be satisfied with blue and white in another 5 months? 5 years?

And if I settle on blue and white, do I want flowers or stripes or that funky little Dutch windmill pattern?

Or, do I want something with birds on it? I really like birds – enough to tattoo one on my left shoulder, you would think I like them enough to get bird plates. Why don’t I just buy some stupid bird plates?

Or, something really crazy, maybe red or orange – anything totally flashy.

Or, green. There are some days only cereal in my green tree bowl will do the trick.

Can you see why this is such a huge decision? I am just not in a good place in my life right now to make it.

I’m moving. In 8 months, I’m moving. If I buy my plates before the move, not only do I risk breaking them in the move, I risk them not fitting in with my new life – wherever that will be.

I just don’t feel settled enough for my own plates yet. I like the freedom of knowing that if one of my plates get dropped, I am out fifty cents and I don’t have to seek a specific replacement in a potentially discontinued pattern. It just seems so stressful to have a set of plates.

Maybe my anxiety over the pressure I feel to find my own unique set of dinnerware is a sign of commitment phobia. Nicole razzed me all weekend about being a total commitment-phobe. I told her that I was just like Holly Golightly from Breakfast at Tiffany’s– waiting for the right time to buy some furniture and give my cat a name….except with plates. I have furniture and my cat is named Peek-a-boo.


About ermodi

i like champagne and nachos. i watch people’s mouths move when they talk to me and judge if they are a good kisser i like to write with fine-tip Sharpies because i think it makes me look confident i bite my nails i think doing the dishes is a very lonely chore i think “autumn” is the prettiest word in the English language. i believe in love – or, at least something that resembles love, but i don’t trust this idea of forever.
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13 Responses to Commitment Issues

  1. Adam says:

    Huh. Even I have a pattern. No, really: I have a set.

  2. Go Frank Go says:

    Hahaha! I purposefully have cupboard full of mismatched dinnerware, too.

  3. Jon Deere says:

    “It says something about you – it’s a way to define yourself, an expression of your identity.”

    Your dishes define you no more than your couch, your coffee table, or your microwave. These are merely things you own. You do not commit to an inanimate object. You merely own it while you choose to. The moment you choose not to it can be discarded.

  4. Bongo says:

    LOLOLOL I have mix and match from goodwill stores.,.I’m comfortable LOLOLOLOL….Always…..

  5. The plate committer says:

    Man, you make me sound like a conservative pig, you hippy! Hahaha!

    I believe that mix match plates are cool! I have a mixed and matched tea set, yarn stash, and armory! But I thought it was one of the funniest thing I’ve ever heard when you said, “I guess I should settle down and get an actual set of plates”. So, like the good friend I am, I went on a match making mission… And now I come to find out that you don’t want to “settle down” with a specific pattern and you’d like a plate to match your every mood…

    I am a t-shirt and jeans girl. Jeans are the foundation that I can dress up or down anyway I want to. I perceive plates as jeans, the foundation to the table that I can dress up and accessorize with linens, glasses, flowers, place cards, etc.

    You are, MOST DEFINITELY, NOT A T-SHIRT AND JEANS GIRL! And since your wardrobe varies with you mood, has a foundation in the clouds and is only limited by your limitless imagination, I HAVE NO FREAKING CLUE WHAT TO COMPARE DISHES TO IN ORDER FOR YOU TO SEE MY POINT!

    But it was fun watching you struggle with the decision! Just remember, the fate of the world depends on it! Hahahahahahahahahahahaaha!

  6. Janaki Nagaraj says:

    We South Indians have no such issues as we mostly eat in stainless steel plates…else I would be fussy too….nice post.

  7. baldychaz says:

    being a man i dont even notice the plates just the food!

  8. colleen says:

    🙂 Nice take on dishes. I’d be wary of making such a huge commitment just yet…;)

  9. Hi Maureen:
    I’m w/Chaz on this one. Food not plates. Being a single male I guess this kind of decision alludes me. Yes I have a plate theme but…
    …now don’t laugh…
    …My plates are from Corelle, hand me downs from my Aunt who used to own my condo.

    And you’re moving? Wow!


  10. In India, they often ask single people “When are you going to settle?” which means, ‘When are you getting married?’ Still single till my forty first year (unusual for an Indian woman), I loved to answer, “I’m settled already.” So if you’re ‘settled’ already and a man would only add the finishing touches, I’d say go ahead and commit to a lovely dinner set – that reflects your taste!

  11. Nicole's Mom says:

    I never liked any of the plate patterns or bedroom furniture I had in 20 years of marriage. The instant I was free, I walked into lovely shops and purchased both without hesitation or mental reservation. So, all you need to do is suffer through mediocrity until you’re 40 years old and then refuse to live around anything you don’t love. Or, just pick something and get rid of it when you’re bored. Were we talking about men or plates? Oh well, same advice.

  12. Madeline says:

    You should get Fiesta Ware! You
    Can mix and match but still have a common theme. Plus, one of their colors used to be radioactive so it’s a great dinner party conversation starter!

  13. Pingback: Goat Therapy -

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