During my dazed drive to work from the gym, I was partially listening to a story on NPR regarding farms in Florida dealing with an unexpected winter frost. The story was a generic report about farmer issues with maintaining the health of the crops – which is a similar issue that Napa farmers seem to deal with every other year. I was entirely tuning out the radio until the narrator’s semantic selection caught my attention. For some reason, he chose the word “cosmetic” in reference to maintaining the quality of the fruit. And, for some other reason, I couldn’t help but digress upon whether or not the narrator really made a mistake.
One of the few things that most consumers seem to overlook is the basic idea of fruit/vegetable cosmetics. Much like how we judge other people, we normally seem to associate exterior appearance with interior quality. And, fittingly, much like how we discover other people, we realize quickly that a pretty fruit can actually turn out to be an evil bitch - ahem, which is to say it can taste bad.
Basically, if you are clueless in learning how to determine whether a certain fruit is ripe, fresh or sweet – then, you are obviously more inclined to pick pretty fruit. And because, farmers and distributors know we are senselessly prejudiced and dense human beings (for the most part), they decide that they must make fruit to look pretty to appeal to our desires. But to make fruit look pretty, they must perform cosmetic manipulation – chemical tummy tucks and boob jobs for produce if you must. As a result of this cosmetic manipulation, your food is now more harmful to you, costs more to you, tastes worse, and might become a dirty whore that cheats on you when she says she’s going to have a girl’s night out but really is meeting up with an orange muscled dude who wears like a size 15 shoe but has a tiny package because he got screwed for juicing. You know, shitty.
Nothing I just wrote should be a surprise to you. The important lesson is to really learn how to pick produce (ask someone!) and don’t rely on the shiny wax coated stuff at the supermarket. Just think, when you pick the ugly fruit from a market stand, you are doing yourself and the world a great justice. You know, it’s fun, like taking the ugly girl home for a party. (That quote is from a show or a movie, by the way, I am in total support of inner beauty.)