Monday, October 12, 2009

Truth Is Stranger Than Pulp Fiction

Every morning, in the wee small hours when all the world (OK, not all but an overwhelming majority of it) is still asleep, I sit at my desk in my office and enjoy my breakfast: black coffee, yogurt and a grapefruit. As anyone who has read anything written in this space before knows ("why?" would seem to be a fair question to ask yourself right now) I am what some might call a creature of habit. I am also what some - less charitable souls no doubt - might call a crazy person. I chalk that divergence of opinion up to the whole "you say to-may-to, I say to-ma-to" debate and give it not a moment's further contemplation.

Last weekend, things were very hectic for us 'NTSG - between two nights at Giants Stadium enjoying Springsteen and a Sunday morning Racing in the Park f/k/a Great Adventure. With all of the places I had to be last weekend, I could not make it to one where I spend an important portion of every Sunday morning: the grocery store. Thus, I lived life last week grapefruit-free (or grapefruit-less, depending on how one view's the omnipresent glass). A week's worth of "change" in my morning diet did not make me a happy camper, which is surprising I am sure given my generally free-spirited approach to life.

Yesterday morning I tore like a man possessed through the A&P in search of quality grapefruit. Alas, I found none. I mean to say that the store had no grapefruit at all, quality or otherwise. There were a lot of oranges, tangerines, clementines and even something identified by their sign as "blood" oranges (good thing I left my Crips-colored hoodie at home for there is nothing quite as embarrassing as having citrus fruit bust a cap in your ass as you are on the stroll in the produce section) but not a single grapefruit anywhere.

A lesser man (allow that to wash over your skull cap for a moment before uttering "as if" to yourself quietly) might have given up the pursuit right then and there. Not I. At some point early yesterday afternoon I drove over to the Pathmark on Lincoln Boulevard, which was also awash in quite nice-looking fruit - none of which was grapefruit.

In desperation, I went to the little Farmer's Market that opened a few years ago (cue "irony") in the space at the Shopping Center formerly occupied by an A&P store. Margaret loves the prices in there, which I must admit are excellent. I do not share her enthusiasm for the quality of the fruit typically for sale there. If one accepts as true that you get what you pay for, then it should come as no surprise that I located grapefruit there yesterday afternoon. The price was excellent: 3 for $1.00. The fact that they more closely resemble water-retaining white grapes than grapefruit was not. However, having climbed up on my fences and made two unsuccessful trips in pursuit of them already, I gave in to my desperation and purchased $2.00 worth of them.

Surprisingly the one I just finished eating a few minutes ago not only had a great deal of taste but also a significant amount of juice, which is to me the mark of a quality grapefruit. I still cannot get over how small it was. And I could not help but think that the one I ate this morning was smaller than the one that appears temporarily to have swallowed my right ankle. I violated a cardinal rule of running (or walking for that matter) this morning: I took my eyes off of where I was going. I did it only for a second. In that brief amount of time, parts of my body that should not make contact with the ground while running did. And in that brief amount of time, I either stepped onto or stepped into something that caused my right ankle to turn and snap a bit. The nice thing about having sprained my ankles so much during my high school soccer-playing days is that I recognized the injury as soon as I bit turf. It will be fine in a few days - it always has been in the past. It did put the kibosh on the morning run this morning, however, since it hurt too damn much to put any weight on and I lack the strength in my left leg to hop on it for 3+ miles.

And this morning, as I was walking through the parking lot from my space to the front door of the office, I developed a new appreciation for my grapefuitette. It weighs significantly less than an actual, full-sized grapefruit. And this morning, every little bit helps.

-AK

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