I don't know why, but I've always felt I was special. While my friends would hide behind leaves or branches, I was born with the desire to be noticed. So, when a man grabbed me out of my tree and put me in a crate, I knew my life would change dramatically, and for the better.
It was quite a boost being in that box. I knew I was superior. I didn't have a blemish, I was perfectly shaped, and my color was uniform. There wasn't a specimen in that crate that could compare.
Once at the grocery store, I was beaming. I knew I'd be away from the riff raff and in a grateful owner's kitchen in no time, as I was clearly the best specimen on display. My location on top of the pile wouldn't hurt either.
A few people passed me up for inferior specimen, but soon a woman with impeccable taste approached. She picked up half a dozen others, scrutinized them, and returned them to the pile. Then, her velvety hands found me. She turned me over several times, caressed my crimson skin, and placed me in a plastic bag. After finding a couple others of near quality, she placed us ever-so-gently into her basket, where we joined a loaf of bread, a gallon of milk, and some pork chops.
I won't bore you with details of the drive home. Just know it wasn't the gentlest ride, and I was thrilled the bread was there to cushion me.
Once we arrived, I was placed in a bowl on the counter. I knew I was in a fine home with a great appreciation of my kind. After all, I was out there on display, unlike the bread and milk hidden in the refrigerator.
The family seemed nice enough - the woman, a man about her age, and a little boy named Timmy. Each of them glanced my way several times that day. It was nice to be appreciated.
Anyhow, before I knew it, the woman had grabbed me, rinsed me off, and put me in Timmy's lunch box. It was one tight squeeze. A couple slices of bread were there, with some turkey and cheese. Joining us were a juice box and some cookies. I could barely move, and it was so dark I couldn't see anything once the box was closed.
Still, I had high hopes. Timmy, I was sure, would savor every bite of me. He might show me off to his friends, or give me to his teacher. Thinking about the pleasure I would give that boy helped me pass the time until lunch.
As soon as Timmy picked up the lunchbox, I wondered how accurate my assessment really was. He hit that box against the wall at least a dozen times en route to the lunchroom. It's a wonder I wasn't bruised beyond recognition.
My hopes were raised again once we reached the lunchroom. Timmy placed me on the table first, and did I ever have a prime view. I was surrounded by thermoses, sandwiches, grapes, cookies, slices of pizza. The sights practically made my non-existent mouth water.
It was the lunchroom banter that really got me sweating (figuratively, of course). Timmy started asking around. It seemed that he preferred bananas to apples.
I couldn't believe it. How could anyone prefer one of those short mushy yellow things to the wonderful redness of me?
Before I knew it, I experienced utter humiliation. I was tossed into another boy's hands, and Timmy got his banana. Shockingly, it had three bruises. Oh, the shame!
Still, I looked at the boy with skepticism. Would he give me the respect I deserved? Would I give him the eating pleasure I was destined to provide?
As he brought me toward his mouth, I was hopeful. The sparkle in his eye and his tongue movement made me believe he was as excited about our encounter as I was. As his teeth sank into my juicy flesh, I was certain his taste buds were rejoicing.
I couldn't have been more wrong. Within three seconds of that bite, the contents of the boy's mouth were expectorated on the lunchroom table, and I was flung halfway across the room, landing squarely in this trash receptacle, where you find me now.
I've certainly had an entertaining life: for you at least! Next time, I suppose, I shouldn't get my hopes too high. Besides, who knows? I could yet be recycled for horse feed.
Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall. Proverbs 16:18 NIV
note: Malus domestica is the scientific name for an apple
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