Sunday, July 16, 2006

Plum Line

Barbie was perched precariously from the gnarled branch of the giant plum tree. Her come-hither high-heels dangled daringly from her pink-nailed toe tips. Her long blonde hair was drawn back in a sensible pony tail. She tried desperately to recall how she found herself in such a predicament. She dared only to dream of rescue.

Back at base camp on the ground, between the man-sized tree roots erupting from the grass, Joe and Steve plotted their ascent. Joe was proportionally larger than Steve, and more rugged. Both men had military training, Joe in the infantry, Steve in the Air Force (later with NASA). Joe had a Kung Fu grip. Steve was bionic. They both had gear. They were both eager to climb.

They made their way up, slowly at times. They used alternately brute strength and daring finesse. The ancient fruit tree was fortunately cris-crossed with rope bridges, rappel lines and swinging vines. Steve made the direct approach, out on a limb. Joe attempted a monkey-like flanking maneuver. They both reached Barbie at the same time.

Bitch that she was, Barbie danced a jig on a twig just to prove that she wasn't helpless.

Girls!

Barbie belonged to Wenda. GI Joe belonged to David (different David). Steve Austin, the Six Million Dollar Man, belonged to me. Mission accomplished, the three seven-year-olds sat in the plum tree in my front yard, lazily picking fresh ripe Satsuma plums off the tree, biting into the sweet tart red flesh.

We would pick and eat at will, the fruit traveling mere seconds from tree to mouth. The plums were sun-warmed and swollen with juice. There is nothing in the world like the flavor and aroma of fresh ripe warm plums. There are few pleasures that measure up to lying in a plum tree with your friends, sticky with nectar, giggling like idiots on a summer afternoon.

I now wait each year for the summer fruit to arrive at the local grocery store. Anticipation and hope mount each plum season for the first arrivals. Each year, I hope that this will be the year. Each year my hopes are dashed.

Pumped up with chemicals and genetically manipulated, today's store-bought plums are a beauty to behold. Perfect smooth skin, blemish free. Deep reds, blues and purples, shining under the special produce-department halogens. They lure me in with thoughts of summer vacation, playing in the sprinklers and climbing trees.

Then, I get home. Unable to wait until the groceries are stowed, I search the sacks for the pile of plums. I bite deep, and inevitably, I spit the whole into the trash. No plum juice. No plum smell. No flavor whatsoever.

Hopes dashed again. Maybe next year.

Reading for Comprehension:
1. GI Joe Vs. Steve Austin?
2. Why don't they make shows about cyborg-astronauts fighting Sasquatch anymore?
3. What fruit disappoints you the most? (No, the answer is not "Brian.")

12 comments:

  1. 1) Old School GI Joe v. Old School Steve Austin... I go with Steve Austin. The dude was BIONIC. But I understand the new GI Joe is all super-geared up and crap.

    2) Your second question answers it self. The aliens took the robot Sasquatch home. But out in space, cyborg Luke Skywalker takes on all kinds of stuff. And I think Oscar and the OSI are kind of like The Force. That ice tunnel scared the crap out of me.

    3) Peaches. (That has always been my nickname for you. Now you know why.)

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  2. I had the Oscar Goldman companion action figure also. He had a tricky exploding OSI briefcase.

    The Ice Tunnel scared the hell out of me too. THEN, my parents toook me to Universal Studios, and the tram actually drove through the same tunnel. I think I wet myself.

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  3. Funny - years later you wet yourself again at Universal Studios with the cut-out of David Hasselhoff. Dahm - where did I put those pictures!!!

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  4. Knight Rider!! Now thats a show worthy of its own blog entry. I own the first season DVD so I can watch the episode filmed in my home town, Covina. El loco still has a picture on the wall of when Hasselhoff ate there. Those German's are no dummies he's a GOD. I wet myself daily thinking about him....crap, it just happened again.

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  5. 1.) Evel Keneival

    2.) Maybe one day we will have a reality T.V. show. It would be called 'plant of the humanoids'. The premise would be to stick a bunch of humanoids who never met each other before into a tiny house or onto a tiny island and see what happens. The formula is 16-18 people which consists of four hot chicks under 25, four ripped guys under 35, one hardcore dude over 55 - preferably a Navy Seal, a dude from texas, a hippy chick, two black people, a chink, a soccer mom, an a hardcore catholic from Porto Rico and as an option the optional yoga dude and an EMT.

    3.) Store bought papaya's are disappointing. :(

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  6. the food jedi10:53 AM

    You have been in Oregon long enough to know the good fruit is in the farmer's market, not Albertson's (or even Trader Joe's, when you are feeling liberal). I know you don't go for some anti-organic political statement (which is odd, considering all the hippies you hang out with at DMB concerts).

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  7. There is a good fruit stand across the bridge in Oregon City, next to a the fresh-fish stand. I may have to make a visit soon.

    I'm not taking the Dave Matthews bait.

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  8. Take the following quote from your blog and substitute the word plums with testicles. I am such a 12 year old.

    "The plums were sun-warmed and swollen with juice. There is nothing in the world like the flavor and aroma of fresh ripe warm plums. There are few pleasures that measure up to lying in a plum tree with your friends, sticky with nectar, giggling like idiots on a summer afternoon."

    ReplyDelete
  9. Also works if you substitute the words "aborted babies".

    Sorry, I just had the pleasure of a ripe yellow-gray abcess that almost popped in my eye. They say anything is good on a Ritz but I would have to disagree.

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  10. 1) Now, there's a more appropriate cage match than Buffy v. Chuck Norris. I am still a bit disappointed in that one.

    2. Because anyone who can believing in cyborgs, aliens & sasquatch all at the same time is either stoned or a complete yokel, in either case, not worth the advertising dollars to support it.

    3. Kiwis. Although I solve that problem by not eating any.

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  11. amanda12:08 PM

    New Seasons might have decent plums. They buy locally, and a great deal of it is organic, so it's at the very least less pumped full of chemicals.

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  12. Sorry, I just had the pleasure of a ripe yellow-gray abcess that almost popped in my eye. They say anything is good on a Ritz but I would have to disagree.

    Jesus, Brian. You fucking win. I'll floss, alright??

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Be compelling.

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