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Reading the main story on our page today about “stuff” got me thinking about my toaster temptations. If I had succumbed to them, I now would have in my possession a black-and-white spotted toaster that looks like a cow. The novelty toaster caught my eye some years back; I could just picture it in our black-and-white kitchen.

But I didn’t buy it. We already had a perfectly good toaster.

Sometime after that, I began to fall for the sleek stainless-steel designs entering the toaster market. Then along came the retro styles – sometimes in bright colors.

Couldn’t our kitchen use a pop of red? I wondered. But, again, our existing white toaster was working just fine. Besides, did I love the color red enough to want to look at it on a toaster every morning?

And wasn’t my big pop of color already in our kitchen – on a teakettle in a lovely shade of green that reminds me of fresh snap peas? Red and green? What would come next, Santa towels year-round?

Yes, this all started with that cow toaster, even though I resisted buying it. Had I not, I knew the cow theme could easily spread all over the kitchen – like a glass of spilled milk. It would not stop with a toaster with a design inspired by the black-and-white markings of a Holstein cow. I would be shopping and see white place mats with big black spots on them and scoop them up because they were on sale. Well-meaning friends would present me with cow-themed mugs – or a cookie jar that mooed when the cow’s head was tilted back while someone was reaching for a cookie. That jar would be stocked with Oreos, of course, because they, too, are black and white.

I would soon feel as if I lived on a dairy farm – smack in the middle of the suburbs.

Mind you, it didn’t happen. However, the Washington Post once wrote a story about a Maryland woman whose home was adorned with all things cow – inside and out. There were cow-themed clocks, wall appliques, dish towels, teapots, a cow bell at the door – even a big rock outside that she painted white with black spots.

Her husband joked that every time he returned from playing golf he was “kind of afraid to walk in the house” – not knowing what bit of bovine decor may have been added in his absence.

My bet is that I would be tired of my cow toaster by now. And probably even the red one. In fact, our existing toaster doesn’t even sit on the counter 365 days a year.

Sometimes we put it away to set up a buffet when we entertain, and we don’t even bother to pull it back out until someone wants to toast a bagel. Still, I always find myself checking out the latest toaster designs in stores – with all their fancy modern-day features.

As for that toaster that started it all, I still think about it now and then, especially when I open a kitchen drawer filled with utensils. Inside sits a wire whisk with a white wood handle covered with – you got it – black spots.

But it only cost a few dollars, and we use it all the time. I can enjoy a “moo” motif now and then – but just a small slice of one.

email: smartin@buffnews.com