Sunday, October 03, 2010


The watermelon display outside one of my markets was gastronomically enticing. A welcome addition to our neighborhood only a few years ago, this young grocery chain has stores in Arizona, California, Texas and Colorado. They specialize in farm fresh produce purchased from local farmers when possible, also natural meats, fresh seafood, dairy products, juices, and bins full of bulk foods to name just a few attractive features. We still have weekly farmers markets elsewhere in our city, and in several nearby surrounding communities. I’m most appreciative of all these often natural, organic, offerings, since I don’t have a garden of my own, multiple fruit tree varieties, or chickens, much less dairy cattle.

This time from the market I purchased a small round wide-striped green and white watermelon, just the right size for my needs. I'll grant you the flavor in many of these melons isn't as rich and sweet as the black-seed-filled larger variety, but I settle for these hybrids. My refrigerator couldn’t immediately accommodate even that small melon, so I set it aside to remain at room temperature for a couple days. Some fruits, such as the Bartlett pears, bananas, pineapple, or recently harvested apricots and peaches that I purchase, continue to ripen over a several day period, so I fully expected this watermelon would easily tolerate several days similarly.

The day came I had finished the cantaloupe and honeydew melons that had occupied space in my refrigerator, so I looked forward to chilling this juicy red-meated watermelon. Preparing to slice this fruity specimen open, I picked up the melon bag only to allow a sudden dam-bursting amount of water to pour forth, splattering all over my kitchen floor. I'm convinced I had actually chosen the perfectly ripened melon that may have been meant to be eaten the same day, or one that must have cracked ever so slightly in transit from my market to home. Had I only noticed that crack a few days ago, I would have found a way to save my melon as soon as I brought it home, but I didn't. So, no watermelon for me that night.

Later in the evening I made one of my occasional visits to First 50 Words where Virginia DeBolt offers a variety of writing prompts. Here’s the prompt I encountered there, "Nothing sounds good," and the words that came to my mind follow. Obviously, I was still reeling from the unpleasantness of my earlier watermelon fiasco, so this must be some sort of warped lament.

Caution to those of weak constitution. Recommend you not be eating when you read this:

Does anything sound good?

Unripe bananas

Soured cottage cheese

Squashy watermelon

Fizz-less soda pop

Rotting potatoes

Moldy strawberries

Root-sprouting carrots

Germ-laden water

Browned peaches

Salmonella eggs

Fermented orange juice

Slimy lettuce

Unripe raspberrries

Smushy peppers

Mouth-puckering vinegar

Blackened avocado

Spoiled mayonnaise

Punky apples

Curdled milk

Decayed fish

Nothing sounds good!

But ... wait ..... this sounds good ........

Jazz lovers will likely enjoy Herbie Hancock's "Watermelon Man" with Miles Davis:

Here's more "Watermelon Man" with Herbie Hancock's Quintet at the north Sea Jazz Festival, especially enjoyable if you appreciate improvisation.


  1. Nothing is as disappointing as slicing or biting into a fruit that proves to be beyond it's prime!

  2. Oh your post reminded me of the many, many times I've had to throw out fruits, vegetables, and other things because they sat too long in my refrigerator...or somewhere and turned into disgusting, mushy, smelly messes. YUCK...they so gross me out. I think you covered every decayed, spoiled, rotting, moldy or slimy thing on your list JoAnn...Yewwwwww! Thanks for the Herbie Hancock. ~Joy