Monday, December 23, 2013

Momentary Lapse

Kishu Tangerines
Kishu, courtesy of Specialty Produce
At some point this winter you will open the crisper drawer in your fridge to reach for a Cutie or a Kishu.  You know the ones: easy to peel, sweet, tart, just the perfect balance and everything you want in a winter citrus.  You have have to make lunch  you're desperately trying to get something into your system because the energy you got from the coffee you mainlined a few hours ago and the two small pancakes you inhaled while making breakfast for your kids has long-since burned off.  You are busy, a little shaky for lack of nutrition and therefore rushing around; you grab one of the tiny citrus with a mighty taste and realize the minute you start peeling it that you'd inadvertently grabbed one of the other random, small tangerines that orchards put out this same time of year, to compete with the stellar new varieties coming from China or Japan.  You are silently cursing to yourself, knowing that once you start peeling a citrus fruit you must go all the way, and that quick, juicy, sugar boost is that much further away.  You have to keep peeling, even though all you can remove is a small, fingernail-sized piece each time and you're so tempted to toss it and grab the orange you really wanted!  But you don't waste things; you compost, you recycle everything you can (and probably stuff you can't), and you just can't justify throwing it away.  So you continue to peel tiny little pieces and remember that it took a farmer planting and nurturing this orange just as much as the other guy, and this guy has to try harder because he doesn't have the new-fangled 'easy peel' feature to attract a whole generation of people who are too busy to sit and peel a little tangerine with a tough peel.  Then you realize you should take these few moments to connect with the earth and remember the fruits she offers.  By then, you've eaten half of the little tangerine and you take a deep breath and remember that you can just grab another one, and this time you'll make sure it's a Kishu.  Now, however, you hold the other little tangerines and clementines in a higher esteem than you had before.  :)

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