I've never been a big apple guy, a big orange guy, a peaches and pears guy. Some fruit, yes. Who doesn't like bananas? Who doesn't eat grapes?
When I was working out a lot, going to the gym every day, I liked coming home to a can of chilled mandarin oranges. That's what I did, that was my routine. Cold mandarin oranges, straight out of the can.
The whole fruit thing sounds crazy, I know, but the produce here is so good. It changed my whole opinion of fruit and farmer's markets. I had some great strawberries the other day. Gorgeous red strawberries, abnormally large, like something out of a science-fiction movie. I bought some navel oranges for no money at all. Juicy as hell.
I don't want to hear about the skin of an apple. I know that's where the fiber is, where the vitamins are. I don't like the way the skin feels against my teeth. Peeling apples is fun, that part I like. I sat at work the other day with a potato peeler and a knife, peeling my apple and slicing it up.
The farmer's market has more than fresh produce. You can buy flowers and goat's milk and bee's honey and garlic naan.
There's also a guy selling spices, but you have to be careful when you walk past his booth. If you make eye contact with him, if you admit to cooking protein at home, he will launch right into his spiel. He says things like, "if you slice it, we spice it" and "if you eat it, we treat it." He made me smell the pork rub, had me try a whiff of the lemon pepper.
I asked him if he'd ever been convicted of assault.
The spice guy looked stunned and stopped talking mid-sentence.
"Don't you get that a lot?" I asked. "I figured people made that joke all the time."
Apparently, the spice guy doesn't have much of a sense of humor. He screwed the top back on the pork rub and we moved quietly to the next booth.
The farmer's market is a great maze. We bought some leeks and some broccoli, some carrots and kale. I was coerced into smelling some flowers, but I made no move to buy them.
As we headed out, we couldn't avoid passing by the spice booth. "Hey," the guy said, trying to catch my attention. "I just figured out what you said before."
I looked at him and nodded. "I'm going to have my boss put that on a shirt," he said.
I told him that sounded like a good plan.