Building the Kitchen

Ken's Kosher Kitchen: It took me months just to get the basic kitchen together. First, there was the design. The main problem was trying to figure out where to put the basics, especially the sink and the stove. Then there was the technical issue of how to get wastewater out of the basement. I resolved that, eventually, by getting an under-the-sink pump, but I didn't know what steps to take. Did I have the plumber over to do rough-in plumbing before putting the cabinet in? No, but I had to communicate with the plumber to make sure I located the sink in a reasonable place. We had found a charming 20-inch used gas stove, and we were expecting the plumber to install a gas hookup. However, a friendly kitchen designer warned me off of putting a gas stove in the basement. Too much hassle, with venting and safety issues. Did I tell you that none of this is code? Kitchens are not allowed in basements here. Anyway, I got the plumber in to do his piece and searched for an electric stove. We found one and then had to get an electrician in to install a 220 outlet and some other electrical frou-frou. In the meantime, I had added another countertop and set a small refrigerator underneath. None of this had too much to do with kosher, except the stove and the refrigerator were used and so required cleaning. However, I did design the kitchen somewhat symmetrically, so it would be easier to separate meat and dairy (and parve, oh my) utensils from each other. The whole thing probably cost a couple thousand dollars by the time all was said and done. What (or, more accurately, who) pushed me was Carole, somewhat to my surprise. She approached it as a project that needed to get done. Whatever the reason, I was grateful for the push. For a guy who is not exactly Mr. Handyman, getting this far was a miracle. Schueller House


Ken's Kosher Kitchen: The Deal

One Bedroom, Two Kitchens: My wife and I are not on the same page, religion wise. I'm trying to follow Torah, she's trying to follow the Gospel. While I was attending services at Congregation Am Echad in San Jose, California, she was up the road at St. Martin's Parish. Boy, don't try this at home. When we had the opportunity to move to Colorado Springs, Colorado, where there was no Orthodox minyan that I could pray with, I made a deal. I'll move away from this vibrant Jewish community only if you let me set up a kosher kitchen somewhere in the house. The assumption was that it would in addition to her kitchen. She agreed. And while it has taken a while for me to get underway, I have to say she has lived up to her end of the bargain. Schueller House.


Ken's Kosher Kitchen Adventure

More to Come: I'll use this day, the fifth day of Omer, the day before the seventh day of Khag Ha-Matzot, to disclose that I've been trying to set up a kosher kitchen for some time and that I will be sharing the process with your in this blog. Check back here for regular updates. Schueller House.


BODYWORLDS2 vs. The Circus Freak Show

Is There a Difference? BODYWORLDS2, now exhibiting at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, displays human bodies, preserved through a process called Plastination in various and unusual poses. There is a stunning lack of criticism for an exhibit that is morally disgusting. While the exhibit is touted as educational, the same visual imagery could have been accomplished without resorting to using human bodies. It is probably true that the use of human bodies attracts more visitors and therefore more "education," but education in what? In the sensationalizing of human remains? In turning the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, and other exhibitors, into direct descendants of the circus freak show? In Jewish tradition, by the way, bodies are generally not viewed, the practice being considered disrespectful to a person who is best remembered in his or living form. Schueller House.