Saturday, July 28, 2007

Peaches 40-48: The Last In Boulder

This morning, my last in Boulder for a long while, I did not pack my things, or visit some scenic location, or say goodbye to my friends. I had a paper bag on my desk, and before I did anything else - before the bags were zipped up, the keys returned, or the dishes washed, that bag would have to have its contents emptied. Into my stomach.

This was the bag of peaches that I bought about a week ago. I'd been waiting all this time for the peaches to get ripe, but today I had to eat them right away, because I don't believe they ;et you take peaches in as carry-on baggage. \I found about three out of four of the peaches were sour and lacked a peachy sweetness. Two peaches from the nine I ate this morning were really beautiful tasting.

I keep on trying to construct a metaphor out of this. Leaving is incredibly hard. And not just the annoying practical things like putting my things away and transporting them a couple states away. It's so difficult to pick up everything that I've known for the past couple months and leave it behind the airport gates. I will close my eyes, take a nap on the plane, and leave in a different world. I don't think that's too much of a stretch or anything.

I suppose I should feel a certain urge to sum up my life here. But as I was watching some cartoons on my computer this morning, cutting away the bruised parts of the latest peach with a plastic knife, depoisting the segments of discarded peach on a sheet of newspaper already havey with peach pits and damp with juice, I didn't think about much. Maybe because there is so much to think about, and so much to do. Maybe it's because right then - I was just eating peaches.

I'll be out of internet contact for about a week, but I will be able to check my e-mail intermittently. I will not be out of peach contact, though. I will return, of course, with more peach adventures.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Peaches 37-39: The Peach Feast That Wasn't

It was the first peach of the day, but it wasmore than that; it was going to be the first peach of a really wonderful peach glut. I had everything I needed. My mouth, an empty stomach, and a nice paper bag buling full of fine farm-fresh peaches. I was about to put my incisors to some serious work damaging this one particular inaugural peach, held out right in front of my waiting mouth, when I put the fruit down and called up a friend to invite her to join me, but only getting this friend's friendly answering phone message, I went to work alone.

The peaches were hard to the touch. Harder than I would've liked. But I feel like time is running out. I leave Boulder on Saturday afternoon. And by then this bag of peaches had better be eaten. And fast.

But this first peach was disappointing. It was hard, unsweet, and tasteless. I had two more, with similar results. We're not talking crunchy here like an apple, but they all lacked the smooshy juiciness so essential - for me - to a good peach experience. I was going to eat the entire bag huge multiple-pound, but after the third peach, I collected the peach pits in a small bowl and slid them into the trash. I have to wait. Still. Maybe my friend can join me on my peach gorge after all.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Peaches 35-36: A pretty pair, a peachly prelude....

Image from BibliOdyssey.

BOULDER, CO. The late afternoon heat was too much for the peach-bloggers of this upscale mountain community, and they set aside their important work to take naps and drink ice water, prolonging a hiatus that has upset many of the blossoming industry's die-hard fans. One prominent writer was barely dressed, even in the late afternoon, because he said "It's so damned hot. How can you expect a creative person like me to work when it's this hot?"

The peach bloggers (or peachloggers, as they are affectionately known) have had a tough couple weeks. Because of an illness that has left most of the industry stuck in bed with bad mood, and an upcoming move, their once regular reports of the quality of peaches have been absent. This has left their legions of fans without the gustatory reports on peaches they had come, this summer, to expect. Said one fan in a complaint to an important writer:
You have 60 more peaches to eat before the end of August, by the way. Don´t think we´re going to let you off the hook on that one. I will denounce your blog on my blog if you fall through on your peach promise.
But eating peaches is hard work. Laying on his bed, sweating, one young up-and-comer explained himself:
Eating peaches, well, it's a huge time commitment. That's what all these people don't understand. You can't just, you know, take a ten minute break from work and pop a couple peaches into your mouth and chew them up and then you have a peach post. I mean, you can. But that's not what they [the consumer's] want. I mean, there's plenty of competition. And we know, you know, the good peach bloggers, that it's not just about numbers, it's about quality. Like, I'm not going to name any names, but the people I'm writing for, they don't want me to talk about how I ate fifty peaches in an hour and ended up puking. They're here for something more. And that quality takes, well - it takes time.
When asked if he had written a peach post that day, that young peachlogger explained that he had spent all morning packing, and had only managed to eat two peaches that day. His batch was not yet ripe, although he reported that the peaches were rather juicy, if not amazing. He would write a post later that afternoon.

Only time will tell if this industry will finally get serious. "Tomorrow," said a respected peachlogger, laughing, "tomorrow we're expecting something special. I can't tell you yet, but we've been lazy for too long now. We're going to make a splash."

Friday, July 20, 2007

The Princely Peach

I started this blog because I loved peaches, but never seemed to eat enough of them. And I never ate enough peaches because I loved them too much. You know how when you really really like a girl you get so nervous that your stomach ties itself up into a knot so complicated it could win a Boy Scout a merit badge - and so you never call her? It's like that. But with peaches.

So what's been up? Well, I've been sick and I'm about to move, so I haven't eaten as many peaches.... As if those are excuses. I think that the two most common blog posts on earth are a) I have a blog! and b) I know I haven't updated this blog in a while but....

So I'll spare you.

I just felt the need to expound on the gracefulness of the peach, the wonderful peach. It is undoubtedly the best fruit ever invented. Think of how boring this blog would be if it were the 100 Carrot Caper? Or the 40 Rib-Roast Romp? Yes. It is only the peach that can be enjoyed so much - so well - too well.... Well enough for a blog.

So here's what you can expect, you, my small enclave of fans and friends: Before I leave for Florida, on the 29th of July, you're going to get: 1 (one) interview with a peach farmer and 20 (twenty) peaches eaten. Before I get to the Twin Cities in the first of August you're going to get a flush of posts about my eating over two-dozen peaches as I sit on the Florida beaches and have nothing better to do but eat. So sit tight. Peaches are only ready when they're ripe.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Peaches #s 30-34: How was your Sunday? Mine was... Peachy.

I went to the Boulder Farmer's market a couple weeks ago, as nervous as a fourteen year-old boy about to meet a girl at the movies and he doesn't know if it's a date or not but god damn he wants it to be a date. My hands were shaking, my mouth was dry, and no matter how fast I walked it didn't seem to be fast enough.

I was nervous because I heard news that there were peaches at the farmer's market. Locally grown, fresh peaches. Sold by real-life friendly peach-farmers. Well. By the time I made it to the farmer's market the peaches were long gone. A line starts to form about an hour before the market opens. Me and the farmers chatted a bit about the heavenly fruit, and I told them about this here blog, and they were a bit tickled that I should have a peach blog.

So, next Wednesday - good old America Day, for those of your keeping track - I made it to the farmer's market early as early could be and got the biggest bag of peaches I could afford and it was all I could talk about all day.

I like my peaches a bit overripe, so I waited until this Sunday morning to eat my wonderful harvest. This morning, butter-knife in hand to cut out the moldy bits, I started my peach odyssey.

I ate four out of six peaches, saving the last two for after dinner. The first peach I ate was good, not great. It was incredibly juicy, though - far juicier than any store-bought peach. It was sweet, and while with most peaches I find that the there are some sections of the peach that are bitter, this was just all around good. The second peach I ate was disappointing. It tasted watery, though it was as juicy as the first peach. It wasn't bad, and only had a slight bitter aftertaste, but it wasn't good.

I thought: damn. There isn't much to write home about these farm-fresh peaches.

Oh, the folly of men! Because I hadn't eaten the next peach, the grand peach, the best damn peach I've had all year: it was sweet, juicy, perfect, and so peachalicious that it made me dizzy with joy. Every bite was good. No. Every bit was GREAT. I couldn't believe my luck. The next peach, while not as good, was still incredibly amazing.

So I sat there in my chair, covered in peach juice, with a funny, blissed-out peach look on my face for five or ten minutes before I could rouse myself out of my chair to do the important tasks of today, like write a post about eating peaches, and wiping the peach juice from around my maw.

It's a hard life I lead, a hard life.