Sunday, August 24, 2014

tomato noir


CONFESSION:  I would like to write a noir poem about tomatoes.  

Today at the farmer's market in Studio City, I couldn't stop taking pictures.  The scent of the fruit tickled my nostrils, and I kept going, click, click, click.  The tomatoes even smiled, though some seemed to dislike being photographed by a stranger.

Lewis Grizzard said, "It is difficult to think of anything but pleasant thoughts while eating a home grown tomato."   A lovely statement, but it also sounds like a challenge.  I do know that in dreams tomatoes are supposed to be an auspicious symbol.

But doing a web search on tomatoes, I found some sordid details from the biography of this fruit-mistaken-as vegetable that make it a worthy subject for noir:

  1. For instance, until the early 1800's, Americans wouldn't eat tomatoes because people thought tomatoes were related to the poisonous belladonna plant.  
  2. Tomatoes are a great cure for acne & sunburn.  
  3. Tomatoes don't just come in colors like orange, red, or yellow:  they can also be black!  
  4. In Spain, there's an annual festival called La Tomatino where people basically throw tomatoes at teach other.  
  5. Finally, the scientific name for tomato, as discussed here, is "wolf peach."

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