That was exactly how the tree felt.
You may remember that I have a slightly adversarial relationship with fruit trees. This hasn’t changed. But I was content to just let this relationship be what it was. I may not be best of friends with fruit trees but I wasn’t going to go out of my way to antagonize them. The trees apparently don’t feel the same way.
The other day, I came home from work and was taking care of some stuff around the yard in preparation for trash day when I realized that one of the green date trees had decided it would be a good idea to load up only one of its branches with fruit. Just one. Completely covered in fruit. So obviously, the branch snapped and broke off.
Now I have a dead branch covered in almost ripe dates on the floor.
I thought about just throwing everything away as I’m not the hugest fan of green dates or the tree, but I knew my mother would be greatly displeased with such a decision. She highly values her date trees. So I resigned myself to the fact that I was going to have to pick every single date off the branch and then get rid of the branch.
Now, the thing about the date trees is that they’re covered in thorns. I’ve been stabbed by them before. I try and learn from my mistakes. So this time, I went and donned a pair of leather work gloves before bothering the branch.
The tree was not having any of it. It stabbed me anyway. Through the leather of my gloves. Into my thumb. And then broke tip of the thorn off in my thumb so deep that I haven’t been able to get it out with a needle. I’m not squeamish about digging around in my flesh with a needle either. I have a hole in my thumb now from picking at the area around the thorn with a needle. But you can just barely see the tip of the thorn. I definitely don’t have enough of it to grab with tweezers. Jerk tree.
Looking around online for splinter cures, it looks like maybe an Epsom salt compress might help coax the thorn out far enough so I can grab it. Yay.
You know how your parents and doctors and nutritionists, etc are always telling you to eat more vegetables? You know, because you need the vitamins and other nutrients found in vegetables or vegetables provide some much needed fiber in your diet. All that stuff. But as it turns out, fruits and vegetables are trying to kill you. But they’re doing it passive aggressively. Plants are jerks like that.
It turns out, plants seem to exhibit a circadian rhythm. They do this so that they can stay in sync with their predators and try and fend them off. Say, in the case of cabbage, it knows that certain predators like to eat them during the day. So during the day, they ramp up production, or whatever, of glucosinolate, which not only helps the cabbage defend itself against predators but also has the anticancer and antimicrobial properties. But, cabbage only ramps up glucosinolate during the day, when the predators are out feeding. They don’t bother with it at night, because…why bother? It’s a waste of resources.
Now the thing is, think about where you store your vegetables. Probably in the fridge, which is dark because you don’t leave your door open all the time, or a darkened, cool area. Your vegetables aren’t bothering to produce glucosinolate, which is beneficial to your health. They’re actively trying to kill you, but indirectly. Because while eating those vegetables will still be beneficial to your health, it’s not as beneficial because those plants have decided to try to be the least beneficial to your health as possible. They’re trying to kill you. Maybe not directly, but they are.
Plants are jerks.
Incidentally, you can look at these pictures too. How can these fruits and vegetables not be trying to kill you? Incidentally, I don’t know if the weird plants are really related to the radiation due to the Fukushima disaster. They didn’t link to the site where it debunks the myth. But regardless, those fruits and vegetables are probably trying to kill you anyway. Maybe even actively.