There are people, I'm told, who have perfectly clean, virginal and pristine, refrigerator doors. Doors so uncluttered, that you can lean against them and never have to fear destroying either your clothing or precious artwork.
I, personally, have never seen such a thing, and doubt that such refrigerator doors do actually exist. At least it doesn't in our household.
Although, I do seem to remember, sometime deep in the misty memories of my youth, my mother used to have a big, white Frigidaire (and that if I saw it today, I'd be amazed at its small size) standing on one side of the kitchen with a bare door.
Then, about 40 years ago, or as near to that as I can recollect, somebody invented the refrigerator magnet. With that development, the refrigerator door wouldn't be marred and whatever was being attached to the door wouldn't be destroyed.
Suddenly, the kid's artwork from school could be displayed in a prominent location; important notices (or just reminders to "pick up milk") had a central location; and especially noteworthy and appropriate cartoons could be torn out of the newspaper's funny pages and displayed to others.
Somewhere in my reading, I ran across the quote: "Carefully examining a person's bookshelves reveals more secrets about them than prowling through their medicine cabinets." The same probably can be said about reading refrigerator doors.
I know whenever a new visitor to our house passes through the kitchen, they always have to spend a few minutes reading the front of the 'fridge.' Since everyone at a party seems to gravitate toward the kitchen, the GE's door can even provide a major conversation starter.
We've got two yellowing, cut-out cartoons that have been attached to the front of our refrigerator for so long that they've even survived the transfer to the new refrigerator when we remodeled the kitchen several years ago.
The first cartoon shows a couple, facing each other in the middle of an argument. She says, "I'll follow you to Seattle, but I'll be miserable. Is that what you want?" To which he replies, "I'll stay here, but I'll be miserable. Is that what you want?" Underneath the cartoon is the simple line, "Something's got to give."
The second cartoon is, of course, a Gary Larson "Far Side." (Doesn't everyone have at least one "Far Side" cartoon stuck up somewhere?) This cartoon features one dog relaxing in an overstuffed, living-room armchair, with a can of dog food in one paw and an open bag of munchies on the floor. The seated dog says to the one standing besides it, with its paws on its doggy hips, "Hey look...you knew I was a non-working breed when you married me."
Besides those two virtually permanent cartoons are a selection of "Arlo and Janis" and "Sally Forth" cartoons that my partner, the Lady Marjorie, thinks illustrate some particularly significant foible. Then there is also the collection of snapshots of parents, brothers and sisters and assorted nieces and nephews.
All of this is stuck to the front of the refrigerator with cute little magnets (sold at virtually every souvenir stand) that proclaim such things as "Men are good for one thing...and how important is parallel parking?" or something equally sarcastic. Or the magnets are in the shape of my favorite birds, flamingos.
I foresee a day when you'll walk into an appliance store to buy a new refrigerator and the salesperson will not only point out the cubic feet of volume chilled, but also point out the reinforced door hinges -- especially if you have children -- so that a lot of stick-on weight can be attached to the front of the door. Look for it.