Most people, I think, keep at least a couple of magnets on their refrigerator.
Sure, there are always a few folks out there who don’t believe in magnets. They think they’re tacky or worry they will scratch the surface of their expensive, stainless steel Flatshare Fridge.
I get that. If I owned a $7,000 fridge, I’d probably lose sleep at night thinking about whether the fridge was safe and if it was happy in my kitchen.
As it happens, my refrigerator is a Norge brand appliance, probably manufactured when Ronald Reagan was governor. Its color is somewhere between almost yellow and sort-of off white.
It’s old, noisy and about as energy efficient as a group of kindergarteners working over a pinata at a birthday party. The door is held together with duct tape and, charitably, the whole thing is worth about $30 — or about what it would cost to have someone haul it off.
Magnets make my geriatric ice box seem less horrible.
Over the years, people who care about me have helped me decorate my refrigerator with Captain America magnets and magnetic postcards of places they’ve been.
My favorite Christmas gift for years was a set of magnets someone made using cutouts from a couple of comic books. I still have a couple of them.
I also have a magnet of Mothman on a tandem bicycle with the Braxton County Monster. I got that at the Mothman Festival in Point Pleasant a couple of years ago, but my best magnet came from my cousin Carissa in Michigan.
She sent it to me because it reminded her of what I was doing with my Sunday column, “One Month at a Time.”
It’s a simple black square with the quote, “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.”
Neale Donald Walsch, author of the “Conversations with God” book series, came up with that one.
Walsch wrote “Conversations with God” after a particularly awful point in his life, where he found himself alone, unemployed and homeless.
The books are a sort of Q&A with God about life, living and the universe. The series was a huge hit, sold millions and inspired countless people — I didn’t know any of that until I wrote this column.
It never even occurred to me to look.
For all I knew, Walsch could have been a yoga instructor, the leader of a doomsday cult or a member of 80s rock band Bon Jovi.
Maybe not the last one. Not that last one. Not in a million years.
Nevertheless, the quote has been a source of inspiration and comfort to me — and I think that’s what makes it my best refrigerator magnet. It reminds me the best way to tell that you’re living is if you’re struggling or striving, at least a little.
The magnet also holds pictures and Chinese restaurant menus better than anything else I’ve got.