I Talk To Fruit

I give them one last heartfelt look before delivering the news.

“Ok guys, it’s time to say good-bye. You’ve been wonderful beyond belief. You’ve allowed me to see things I wouldn’t have otherwise seen—you’ve shown me the world. This good-bye isn’t because you’ve fallen short—on the contrary—you’ve been a vision of beauty. I’m saying good-bye because my eye doctor reminded me that you’re 2-week disposables and you’ve worn out your welcome.”

I give my Acuvue’s one last squeeze and say a little prayer of thanks for their service. I send them on their way with a measure of sadness. I don’t toss my contacts in the trash—I flush them. It seems cruel, after all they’ve done, to let them dry to a crisp in the garbage with half-eaten lasagna and slimy banana peels.

Yes, I admit it, I sometimes consider the feelings of inanimate objects.

taylor

Cue the image of my mom scrambling to get to her phone, “Anna? Sweetie, talk to me. I know I’m just a HUMAN, but talk to me and tell me where I went wrong and how I can help you.”

It’s ok. These feelings don’t rule my day; they aren’t cause for alarm. I don’t believe things are reincarnated ancestors or anything. Feeling bad about throwing away the contacts that helped me watch my 100th episode of Love It Or List It is one thing, but thinking the dryer sheets are Great Grandma Cluck is quite another.

Maybe it gets worse. I’ll let you be the judge.

I don’t like to let my car get too dirty because I know she likes to be pretty—and when she’s low on gas, I feel like she’s hungry.

Sometimes at the grocery store, when I’m picking out tomatoes or limes, I’ll grab one and then decide I like a different one better. When I place the original one back, I’m wrought with guilt. He went from landing the lead role, to getting sent back to the citrus pyramid without explanation. (Put yourself in his position and think back to picking teams in junior high. Yes it IS the same!)

I wonder if he sees me pick his friend (now enemy) and loses his will to live? I bet he feels rotten. I can only hope he doesn’t give up. If he can hold his head up another day or so, he’ll get picked—he just needs a little more time to ripen and mature.

Please stop worrying about my sanity. I do feel bad about lime-gate but I’m not tilted enough to take the insufficient one anyway. It would only be a problem if my days were dictated by this oddity. Right?

I mostly feel this way about inanimate objects when it comes to them feeling unwanted, discarded or over-looked.

When I’m editing my writing and find two words accidentally repeated, and I delete one, I always delete the second one because the first one was there first. It would be heartless to handle it any other way.

crazytown

I’m also mindful that, unless we have company, we tend to use the top 2-4 plates and bowls in our cabinet—relegating the very capable bottom half of the stack to the bench—game after game. That disservice weighs on me.

I don’t feel bad enough to secretly switch the order—but I do admit I’m happy when we have people over and the bottom plates get some playing time. In my head I’m cheering, “Go get’em Little Buddy—this is your time to shine!” I also secretly hope they get re-stacked in a fair way once they’re out of the shower dishwasher.

On another note, I’m not ashamed to confess that on occasion, I’ll quickly and mindlessly apologize to something I run into or accidentally hit. It’s not like I think I hurt it, I just know what a shock it is to get sucker punched and the “Sorry!” is out before I’ve thought it through.

Side Note: I always felt bad for Ken and Barbie dolls when “someone” would put them in compromising positions. For one, they were naked. But also, their movements were stiff, painting an unflattering picture of their lovemaking ability.

As crazy as it all sounds to people who are cold and unfeeling, it’s not that uncommon to feel the way I do. Amber, from the blog The Usual Bliss said, in response to my about me page (where I first admitted sometimes thinking things have feelings), “I am currently talking to all of the pumpkins in my house very sweetly, easing them into the moment when they get replaced by Christmas stuff.”

I laughed until my side hurt.

Another blogger, J-Bo supported me in my comments section by offering, “I feel bad for money that gets lost in my apartment because I have delayed it from going out and having more adventures.”

Now that’s a woman living right.

And yet another comment, this time from the blogger Nadine Millar, “My hubby admitted that for years as a child he would hug the hot water bottle in bed long after it had gone cold, since he felt bad that after giving him all its heat he would simply discard it.”

Nadine’s husband’s hot water bottle is my pair of Oasys contacts—it just feels wrong to toss what once was a lifeline, just because it’s no longer of use.

Side note: I do not feel this way about gum. It comes into this world knowing it’s got the lifespan of a tweet. #onehotminuteyall

I’ve been known to talk to my plants, flowers and garden vegetables. No, I don’t carry on long conversations—actually, I don’t ask them any tough questions (I learned that the hard way.) I simply let them know I’m glad they’re here and I encourage them to keep up the good work. I walk around like the host of a dinner party, greeting them all individually.

“Hey Buddy! You’re sure lookin’ good! Keep it up! Oh hey Little Guy! When did you get so fantastic?”

Crazy, maybe, but it feels right to me. I also believe it works. Our sago palms didn’t do well during the winter and when we uncovered them this spring, they were brown and looking quite dead. One of them clocked in and got to work right away—came back healthy and strong—all on her own.

The other one had the little soft shoots in the middle wanting to flourish, but not getting over the hump. The baby shoots just seemed paralyzed. I went over one day and touched them lightly and gave them a few encouraging, welcoming words (I won’t go into exactly what I said here because it’s between the palm and me), but the NEXT DAY they’d sprouted up a wee bit higher.

I touched them again and bragged on their growth and the next day—they’d made even more progress. This routine went on for a week and below is the Little Chica today, not two weeks later.

I am woman, hear me roar

I am woman, hear me roar

I was telling my friend how I feel terrible when it’s time to throw flowers away. I said I always hold them for a few last minutes and give them one final big sniff—and even if the smell is super rank—I pretend it’s nothing but an utter delight.

She said, “I know. I’m the same way with food. When I’m chopping up veggies or fruit and one piece falls on the floor, I feel bad that he can’t stay and be cooked with his friends—that he’s abruptly separated from them without ever knowing the joy of being a recipe.”

“I know,” I replied, “I always say, ‘Sorry Buddy’ and wash him off before tossing him in the disposal. Sending him away clean is the least I can do.”

I’m not always that kind though. Like the other day, I looked down at my Fitbit pedometer and it was dead. I was super disappointed because I’d been really active that day—work, golf, etc. I said, “No! Grr. Piece of crap.”

Then immediately I thought, “You’re the one that forgot to charge it—you’re the piece of crap. Jerk.” So I nuzzled my Fitbit in the crook of my neck, said I was sorry and we hugged it out.

I admit there are levels of coo-coo; and what you may see as crazy, others may wave off as perfectly normal.

So … I’ll leave you with this gem. I know a lady who said when there is a pan of rice crispy treats, she feels like she needs to eat them all so they can be back together in her belly. She said she couldn’t have their sudden separation on her conscience.

Her logic is solid—I can’t deny that. But if I ever get in that deep, Moma, please scramble for your phone and call me.

I’d love for you to join me on Facebook … it’s good for your health.

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40 thoughts on “I Talk To Fruit

  1. So um, that “friend” of yours who apologizes to vegetables? Yeah she sounds pretty cool 😉 Also, I was just in the café downstairs getting lunch and I reached for a can of soda but then decided to get another kind. Said audibly, “sorry dude” to the first can as I put him back. Yep.

  2. It’s just too bad that compassion doesn’t seem to extend to animate objects, like … say … your dad. I remember well the day you left for college. That look of, “well, old man, it’s been fun but I’ve got a life to live. You were fine, but there are places to go and people to see – and miles to go before I sleep. Hasta la vista, babee!”
    Ah! If only I’d been born a flower, or a plate, or even a contact lens … then I would get some respect!
    It makes me so sad to push the submit button. This comment has been such a good friend. Oh well, hasta la vista, babee.

    • Oh my gosh, imagine if you’d been a flower! You’re so smart so I just know you’d be a sunflower (they know they have to face the sun to grow). My Daddy, the pretty, precious sunflower. 🙂

  3. This is a GEM. You had me at the title and I already want to reread – yes! And I always apologize to my car…sincerely. Like, when I hit a speed bump a little too rough and it scrapes the bottom of my little Hocus Focus, there is an immediate cringe and “Sorry kiddo!” before I lovingly pat the dashboard:)

    • Isn’t it funny how some things are kiddos, others fellas, others little lady? I wasn’t sure what Hocus Pocus was, but kiddo definitely fits. HA! I’m glad you found this to be a “gem” 🙂

  4. I did a post on exactly this!! I’m a total loon. I don’t like when one of my Cheerios gets left out of the party on the other side of the bowl. I’ll either bust up the party or start eating them as punishment for leaving their friend out.
    I also talk to my plants, flowers, insects, weeds, articles of clothing, tennis balls, etc.
    The theme seems to be getting left out, being unloved, getting hurt, being forgotten, etc. hmm…. Interesting. 😀
    I do the same thing with unused dishes! Lol! This post is such a relief to me!!! Thank you!!!

    • First of all, no way! What’s the title – I need to go read! Second of all … SHUT UP and LOL!!!! I’m dying over you eating them as punishment for leaving a fallen soldier! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

  5. I get it. I do.

    I actually do pull plates from the bottom of the stack on occasion, just to ensure they get some “action.” Two people eating dinner on a typical night, eight plates, you do the math: somebody down there on the bottom of the pile is going to be feeling mighty left out after a few days in solitary confinement.

  6. This post is wonderful and hilarious! Oh, we would make for VERY interesting neighbors. Kindred spirits for certain.

    • STOP THE PRESSES! One of my FAVORITE authors read my blog and commented?

      Beth Hoffman, you just made my day, week, month! Considering that I’m still in mourning over “Looking For Me” being over … I guess the least you could do is MAKE MY DAY!

      I hope I can sleep tonight, but I make no promises. THANK YOU, BETH! 🙂

      • You are very kind … and you are also incredibly funny! Your Twitter comment about my book, and then here on your blog, made my day, too! Now let’s go talk to some fruit … LOL

  7. I’d take me longer to tell you all the ways this post makes me feel less alone in the world than it took you to write it, so I’ll just say this- I don’t follow other blogs because either 1- they will be better than mine and I will hate them, or 2- they will suck and I’ll hate them. You dear lady are of the first category and I’m pleasantly surprised that I indeed do not feel hatred for you but an endearing thing akin to love.

  8. You are a serial anthropomorphizer! Are you a vegan? How do you even do that? Do you cry as you eat each tiny baby pea, knowing that, by mashing it between your teeth, you deny it the chance to root, to feel the sun on its leaves, rob it of its flowering and growing of its own tiny peas…which you will ALSO chew to pulp?

    I have three children who provide me with ample guilt and suck enough of my attention that I don’t even hear the sniveling of the china that never gets used.

    (I hope I haven’t ruined legumes for you.)

    • Haha, no—I’m not a vegan. I don’t feel bad for food, b/c like gum, it knows what it’s here for. I think food enjoys being eaten and loved and is happy to have not grown in vain 🙂

  9. I always feel a pang of guilt whenever we drag our Christmas tree to the curb once Christmas is over. And I still am haunted with guilt over trading in my old car for a new one. My old car never did anything wrong, in fact, it was the best car I ever owned. It simply grew old like we all do. I feel like I betrayed it.

  10. I totallllllllly relate. I go through the same emotional turmoil when I have to delete letters or words from what I write and also feel especially bad if its replaced by a word or letter that came later.

    I had a terrible time last summer when we totaled our car on vacation and had to leave it there when it didn’t do anything wrong- just took us on an adventure hoping we would all have a good time together. Doug knows I’m sensitive to this and teases me. As we were leaving it in the parking lot at the car place, he came up with a voice for the van and pretended to talk for it: “You’re coming back, right guys? Guys, where are you going? Where’s our next adventure, guys?”

    Torture.

    • Total torture. He just wanted to serve you and your family … nothing else. Sigh.

      I’m extremely glad you feel my pain—but I kinda already knew you did based on your previous comment 🙂 I’m thinking YOU need to write about some of your views on this topic … I’ll be tuning it 🙂

  11. Pingback: World Class Empathy | Anna Lea West

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