An Ode to Neglected Apples and Other Queer Fruity Things
If you’re expecting a serious discussion about serious subjects, you’re in the wrong place. This blog is about apples, because I have a contentious relationship with them and they know it. So how better to piss off the apple population than to talk about them in public. Take that, you crispy devils.
When it comes to apples, apple sauce or apple pie is about as far as I go. I still enjoy the odd apple–and what better kind of apple for an odd person–but there are dangers that explain why I typically skirt past them in the produce aisle.
A vegetarian ex-partner once drilled into me the dangers of the non-organic apple, whose skin wantonly absorbs those sexy pesticides they douse orchard trees with to keep non-humans from enjoying them. These same pesticides are killing our bees and fireflies, too, which is a gripe I’ll save for later. But since we eat this skin and the FDA seems to gaze through money-colored glasses, I usually eschew (faux-Latin for “don’t chew”) the non-organic apple.
You would think the organic apples would be cheaper, since they don’t have to pay for all those chemicals, but that’s never the way of it, is it? If it’s better for us, we must pay more for it! Yes. No. Not on my budget.
But wait, there’s more. When I do risk either organic or inorganic varieties, no matter how much I try to rinse them off, there’s still a taste of that wax they use to keep them pristine, kind of like the goo they pump into dead people so they look cute lying in their open caskets. (Really, why would anyone want to look at a dead person?) You can see where my mind goes when I taste that wax. And again, I doubt the FDA cares what they put in that wax to keep the apples all red and perky as they bump around with the other perky apples in the bin.
And that’s just the skin!
Let’s say we’ve gazed and admired the cover, the blurbs sound good, the binding looks tasty … eventually you’re going to have to bite this ill-fated analogy and taste the contents. I have many memories of apples I’ve bitten into and wish I hadn’t. There’s the over-ripe mushy ones, the sickly sweet ones, the bitter not quite there ones, the dried out chalky ones. Apples must be like wine when it comes to timing when to bite them, and the skin hides that experience just as well as the unopened wine bottle. I’m sure I’ve had far more good than bad ones, but the bad ones stick in my mind. Not literally … unless I have a severely alien digestive system.
I don’t really think about all this when I shop, I’m actually quite cheerful surrounding myself with food (“yay, cookies!!”). But wisps of these thoughts do playfully frolick about my mind momentarily as I pass the apple bins in the grocery store. “I should get some kind of fresh fruit for my health. Apples? …. nah”
Sadly I have a similar situation with many other fruits there. Kiwis are the worst. Just a glance from them and I’m running to the Bakery section, to be comforted by the inedibly scrumptious goodies they keep behind the bulletproof glass. My texture issues will never let me taste a kiwi without having to spit it out, no matter how wonderful it might actually taste. I’m like a little kid this way, but I can’t seem to do anything about it.
Oranges and tangerines are lovely to taste and their crispy moist munchiness a pleasure to partake, but the sheer effort of getting at the innards reminds me of frustrating picnics in my youth back east, trying to acquire sustenance from a pile of Maryland crabs.
I think this may mark me as lazy eater, which might explain my simplistic dinner menus at home. Still I will sometimes force myself to eat an orange, hoping it, too, won’t be too sickly sweet or hardened like their friends, the apples. I’m usually happy with the effort, if a little sticky.
Lemons and limes are interesting critters, but I can’t see them as food. They seem most happy riding piggyback on an iced tea or margarita, respectively. That’s where I know them best. Occasionally I will take a bite of these, just to remind myself why I don’t buy them in the grocery store. I may change my mind if I ever take up juggling.
Melons … well, melons all wave to me as I pass without a glance in their direction. I have tried them all and they have the most lovely crisp texture. I adore them for that … but like green peppers, they all create a severe bitter aftertaste for me that “normal” people don’t seem to taste at all. We’ve already established I’m a little weird, right? The taste has sadly kept me from taking a second bite of the entire melon family.
Ah, but there is one melon that somehow escaped this phenomena: watermelons. I think I have yet to have a bad watermelon. I’ve eaten the mushy overly sweet parts, I’ve nibbled the greenish hard parts near the rind, I’ve even swallowed the odd seed … somehow it’s all yummy for me. The only reason I don’t grab one of these whenever I see them is the size of them. In my current domicile my refrigerator lives quietly under my counter and takes up slightly less space than a dishwasher (not the human ones (me)–the mechanical ones). Fitting any part of a watermelon in there would be a miracle. I don’t want to eat an entire watermelon on my own, even a small one … it would be tragic if an over-watermeloned stomach put me off this wonderful fruit, so sadly I often do without.
Luckily there are two other fruits that I can be happy about. When thoughts of scurvy begin to nibble at my mind, I usually head straight for the pre-cut pineapples. I avoid the ones in a can–they taste like … can. The store-cut ones take care of that prickly pineapple armor. (It makes me wonder if pineapples have had holy wars with coconuts in their long history … whyfor such awesome armor?) Happily, I skip home with my plastic tubs of fresh sweet armorless yumminess.
Another happy fruit for me is strawberries. These are another chancy fruit when it comes to ripeness, but luckily these little Omnominoms wear their hearts on their sleeve, advertising their freshness on their skins. So although I might avoid them more often than not because of how squishy or green they look on the outside, if they have that healthy pall about them, they’re MINE! bwahahahaha!
This has been a queer person’s uninvited treatise on fruit. Sorry if it’s not what you expected. ~giggle~
~crunch, crunch, crunch~