Nuts in the Fruit Department

This is the reason why I’ll never again shop at the Key Foods on 146th Street.

I just went in for some apples, oranges, tuna and cottage cheese.  I picked up a basket and headed to the apple section when I noticed something…off.  There was an elderly couple, a man and a woman, standing in front of the fruit stand and right by the Red Delicious Apples, the man was yelling something at another customer, clearly a stranger, who was giving this old man a confused and slightly terrified look.

“Here, you take this, you chant, you pray, you make copies and you give them for your friends,” the man shoved a big booklet at the fruit shopping guy, who promptly fled in the opposite direction.

While this was going on, I scooted around the bread case to the other side of this scene to get a closer chance at my Red Delicious Apples.  The Key Foods is quite small:  the aisles are narrow and there are always obstacles in the middle, so navigating your food shopping is a bit like playing Frogger, IRL.

The elderly couple had placed some bits of cardboard on the fruit display…completely blocking the Red Delicious Apples.  I heaved an inward sigh.  I reached through the Golden Delicious and fished around, trying to pick out a good apple.  What is a good apple anyway?  I mostly look for a dark red colour and symmetry.  Is there a science behind this sort of thing?

While I was fishing, another shopper tried to angle herself to the bread case.  She was carrying a lot of groceries, and she dropped a loaf on the floor trying to juggle her wares.

“Would you like my basket?”  I offered her my heretofore empty shopping basket.

“No, no thanks,” she grumbled.

“Would you like to study the Bible of Jerusalem?”  the old woman shrieked at her.  The poor beleaguered shopper snatched her bread and beelined for the checkout.

How many apples?  I wondered to myself.  Is two going to be enough?  Is four too many?  Will my third apple get mushy before I have the chance to eat him?  Such deep thoughts plagued my mind when –

“Do you want the apples?”  the old woman noticed me suddenly.

I laughed a little.  “Yes, I want the apples,”  I smiled.  She moved her cardboard out of the way, but then

“Would you like salvation through the Gospel of Jerusalem?”

“No, thanks, just the apples,”  I chirped cheerily.

“Ohhhh.  Wrong decision.”  She tisked at me, turned to her companion and started speaking rapidly in broken English and I think I caught the word “whore” in there?

“No, actually…”  I smiled pointedly, brandishing my Red Delicious Apple, “…because apples are real.”

As I wheeled around towards the California Navel Oranges, I had never before wished so hard that it were physically possible to kiss myself. 

So if you, unlike me, still wish to shop at the Key Foods on 146th Street, be careful…
…they keep nuts in the fruit department.

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