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Faux Outrage

Literally the most important blog in the universe since 2010.

The truth is, nobody likes to talk about this.

Certain conversations are difficult to engage in because they require an acknowledgement that some strongly-held belief may not be completely accurate, imposing doubt and uncertainty where once stood contentedness and security.

There are those of us who refuse to acknowledge the possibility that our childhood idol was probably a cheating, drunken womanizer, that our favorite “artsy” band is much more interested in money than Monet (and in dollies than Dali, incidentally), or that maybe — just maybe! — the income and capital gains tax cuts we’ve been clamoring for don’t magically pay for themselves.

At a certain point, we must recognize the truth of what other people have been calling “facts” for so long that we have, in our most forgiving moments, unapologetically referred to as “unconfirmed speculation.”

With that said — and I really am sorry to do this — here is some capital-T Truth:

Apples are overrated.

Apple fanboys offer a few arguments explaining why apples are actually underrated, or at the very least, rated just fine the way they are.

Those arguments are as follows:

  1. “Apples are cheap.” (The Prostitute Argument)
  2. “Delicious things are made of apples.” (The Non-Apple Argument)
  3. “Apples are firmly represented in American culture, traitor.” (The Ethnocentric Argument)
  4. “An apple per day keeps the doctor away.” (The Outright Lie Argument)

Let’s take these arguments one at a time:

The Prostitute Argument

Claim: “Apples are cheap and easy.”

Reaction: It’s true, apples are not expensive.  According to the USDA Economic Research Service (which is apparently a thing), apples cost a mere $0.11 per fruit serving, the lowest of any fruit.  The cheapest vegetable, according to that same report?  Cabbage.  Where are the cabbage parades?  Is anyone making the argument that cabbage is the best vegetable because of how cheap it is compared to a cucumber?  (Hint: nope.)

Apples also get a lot of credit for being the quickest fruit refrigerator-to-face.  If you see an apple and are near a source of clean water (to rinse your prize), you can begin munching in under 3 seconds.

That’s just great.

But let’s change the hypothetical just a little bit.  What if you were at a party, let’s say a barbecue, where a plethora of prepared fruits had been placed on a common table.  There are freshly washed apples alongside peeled oranges, watermelon slices, prepared pre-pared pears, fresh grapes, sliced kiwi fruit, and destemmed strawberries.  How long would those apple slices last?

Exactly.

When pit against most any other prepared fruit, the apple loses.

The Non-Apple Argument

Claim: “Delicious things are made of apples.”

Reaction: While it is quite true that apples can be baked or converted into all kinds of scrumptious things (pies, crisps, cobblers, strudels) and even mashed up to make applesauce, it’s worth noting that each of these items has one thing non-apple in common: they require gobs and gobs of sugar.

If you’re favorite thing about apples is that they can be turned into something delicious if you add a ton of sugar to them, I have some bad news for you: your true love is sugar, not apples.  This logic also extends to lobster fans (secret butter lovers), hollandaise fans (cholesterol lovers), fans of playing golf (frustration lovers).

If the best part about something is that it can be converted into something else, it’s quite possible that the original something may not be so great after all.

Sorry, apples.

The Ethnocentric Argument

Claim: “Apples are firmly represented in American culture, traitor.”

Reaction: Apples are everywhere!  They are as American as apple pie!  Candied apples at the state and county fair!  Apple-picking!  Bringing an apple to the teacher!   Bobbing for apples!  The Big Apple!

Yes, yes, that’s all true.  Apples are everywhere.

But nowadays, if a man yells “Apple!” in a crowded theater, he is more likely to conjure images of hipsters waiting in line to buy an iPad than a freshly baked pie on mom’s window sill, its wafting aroma lovingly lifting a longing cartoon hobo off his feet.    In this country, the apple is now sliding into second place on the List of Things People Think About When Someone Says “Apple”.

That’s not a good sign.

The Outright Lie Argument

Claim: “An apple per day keeps the doctor away.”

Reaction: No, this is not true.

Although the mighty Apple Lobby would have you believe this falsehood, an apple each day will not keep a doctor away.  In fact, studies have shown that daily apple intake has very little to do with doctor visits.  Unless, of course, you are a post-menopausal woman.  Lack of proper health insurance (and underinsurance) is far more likely to keep a doctor away.

That said, there may be a situation where an apple per day is an appropriate interest payment on the barter you offered your doctor for necessary medical services.  In those limited circumstances, where an apple/day is the decided upon interest payment, the apple will in fact keep your doctor away, legally speaking.

My Closing Argument

Still not convinced?

What if I told you that my deeply held apple skepticism is firmly rooted in the completely true Bible?

Well, it is.

The Book of Genesis promises us that when Eve (and then Adam) ate an apple from the Tree of Knowledge, they were banished from the Garden of Eden, made aware of their mortality, and forced to endure eternal pain that they would have otherwise avoided (hard manual labor for him and childbirth pain/subjugation for her).  Upon hearing this news from God, it’s not hard to imagine Eve turning to the now-slithering serpent, looking back at the Tree of Knowledge, then making the same point to Adam that I am making now.

“As it turns out,” she would sigh apologetically, “apples are overrated.”

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