Tuesday, February 5, 2019
The best grapefruit EVER!
Humor often doesn't translate well, and sometimes the funnier the moment, the more delicate and difficult to dig up and transplant.
So from the start, I want to acknowledge that it will take a bit of careful spadework to move this from memory and make it blossom here. Perhaps the humor will be lost. But we will try.
First, context. I eat a grapefruit, almost every day, at breakfast. Several reasons: I like grapefruit. They're low in calories and filling: 120 calories for a big honking softball-sized fruit. And then there is Vitamin C, and that wonderful tart smell. I've lauded grapefruit here in the past.
To feed this habit, we are constantly toting five-pound bags of grapefruit home from the supermarket. Grapefruit aren't always good: they can be dry, or too sour. Sometimes I buy one, test the batch, then later return for more. It takes effort.
My wife doesn't eat grapefruit as much, but she will snack on oranges. Which is a novel practice to me. I would never, ever reach into the refrigerator, pull out an orange, and eat is as a mid-afternoon pick-me-up. Just not something I do.
A few days ago, my wife cut up an orange and sat down at the kitchen table where I sat, reading the newspaper. She offered me an orange section. It was a perfect-looking orange, the perfect color, the surface glistening with juice, all without flaw.
I accepted her offer, held the section to my mouth—as kids we'd tuck the skin behind our lips to make orange smiles, but I didn't do that. I bite it. The orange was very sweet, ripe, rich, wonderful.
I wasn't about to take more sections. That would be poor thanks for her having offered me one. But now I was hungry, hungry for oranges, so I did something unusual. I went into the fridge, removed my own orange, and cut it into sections, of course offering her one to replace the one she had offered me. Nearly 30 years of marriage; manners are important.
My wife observed that it was unusual to see me eating an orange. Usually I'm a grapefruit man.
"I like it..." I mused. "It's sweet. It's like the best grapefruit ever."
My wife collapsed into laughter, declaring this the funniest thing I had ever said. I'm not sure why. I think it's the grapefruit-o-centric view of oranges, seeing them as a smaller, sweeter version of grapefruits. A naive, a sweetness itself perhaps. But anyway, she was laughing about it a day later, and I thought I would try to pass it along, knowing that I would almost inevitably fall short.