“I want my dream kitchen to be industrial.” —girlfriend

My dream kitchen will be industrial. It will have bright, wide open spaces framed by exposed pipes and a concrete, no-nonsense floor. The counters and door will be made of stainless steel. A drain installed in the center of the floor will allow you to hose down the whole place.

My dream kitchen will be very industrial. You will be able to walk into the fridge. The dishwasher, also stainless steel, will remove the toughest baked-on grit from oversized pans and baking sheets. Smoked-glass windows will stretch from the ceiling to the floor. Everything will be so large that a person could soak comfortably in the sink alongside the carrots and potatoes.

The countertops in my dream kitchen will have sharp, fearsome corners, industrial enough to cause goring. A black barrel full of toxic chemicals will sit in the far corner, and the ventilation ducts will be caked with hazardous dust. When they tear down my dream kitchen, the soil beneath will be poisonous, having marinated for decades in leeched contaminants.

Pregnant women living within a ten-mile radius of my dream kitchen will have grossly abnormal babies. People two hundred miles away will blame my dream kitchen for acid rain.

My dream kitchen will be a closed shop. To cook in it you will have to belong to a union.

My dream kitchen will be so industrial that it will be in constant danger of being moved to a border town in Mexico. On weekends children will come to play in my dream kitchen and wind up impaled on machinery they cannot comprehend. Old men will drive by with their grandsons and point and say, “I spent 35 years of my life in there. 35 years….”

My dream kitchen will feature industrial-scale accidents. Whole limbs will be cut off, accidentally. A man will walk into the fridge and be overcome by fumes. Another will hear a munching, gurgling sound and feel an odd sinking sensation before discovering that he is standing in the garbage disposal. A sign boasting of so many days since our last accident will never reach double digits. The grandfathers who point and say, “35 years…” will all die of terrible, incurable diseases, but the ensuing class action suit will be thwarted by a crack team of industrial lawyers in the employ of my dream kitchen.

For all its industrial might, though, my dream kitchen will slowly and steadily lose ground to leaner, meaner kitchens modelled on the service economy.

My dream kitchen will knowingly sell defective salads to China.

Many prestigious awards will be won by my dream kitchen. One critic will refer to it as a ‘living installation.’ Years later, textbooks written by individuals who never saw my dream kitchen will call it a landmark kitchen, the only one of its kind, a singular moment in kitchen evolution. Eventually, elements of my dream kitchen will appear as throwbacks in future dream kitchens.