Never Cook Naked: Rude Roomies

Never Cook Naked and Other Culinary Wit and Wisdom

Our very clever, very clothed Never Cook Naked columnists, Mark Scarbrough and Bruce Weinstein, are at your disposal, able to troubleshoot everything from questionable table etiquette to tricky cooking techniques (as well as, natch, proper cooking attire). Curious to read more solutions to culinary conundrums? 


Rude Roomies

Dear Never Cook Naked Guys: When it comes to absentminded roommates, who’s worse—the roommate who routinely uses half an onion and lets the other half hang out on the counter until it rots and needs to be thrown out, or the roommate who always makes too much food and leaves the leftovers in sealed containers that quietly make their way to the back of the fridge and literally stay there for months?—Cranky In A Small Apartment

Dear Cranky: Since you asked, in our esteemed opinion it’s the half-an-onion-on-the-counter roommate. The rotting vegetable has been abandoned in public space. It’s now stinking up the kitchen. And it’s in everyone’s way. Yuck.

Why not the other roommate? Assuming he’s used his own container to store his food in the fridge, so be it. If the container’s sealed properly, it’s not going to do anything for a good while—other than get botulismic. But what he does in the privacy of his own containers is his own business.

If this sort of matter bothers you, forget about marriage. It’s this exact stuff squared. Maybe cubed. Plus forever. And with IRAs.

Got more questions? Good. We do, too. That is, more questions AND answers. In case you missed the mention above, for more cooking etiquette and enigmas explained, you can take a peek at previous columns from our Never Cook Naked Guys. Anything pertaining to food or drink goes. Well, anything within reason. But first, those previously tended-to questions we promised….

“Blonde” Coffee, Old Eggs, Diplomatic Diners, Flat Cookies

Host(ess) Gifts, New Mexican Chiles, Wax (?) Paper

Nonstick Grilling, “Reusable” Bamboo, Meat Safety



  1. One great tip for finding pin bones: take your fillet of salmon and drape it skin side down over a largish bowl—one that is wide with gently sloping sides. The fillet will curve over the bowl and the pin bones will poke out a little, making them easy to find and grab.

Have something to say?

Then tell us. Have a picture you'd like to add to your comment? Attach it below. And as always, please take a gander at our comment policy before posting.

Upload a picture of your dish