On Bruised and Misshapen Clementines


In which The Gay Recluse writes in highly attenuated metaphors about the Democratic primaries in Michigan.

Regular readers of The Gay Recluse may remember when — a long time ago, perhaps even as many as ten days — we wrote about our preference for Sweetie® Clementines from Mulholland Citrus after a high-stakes “taste-off” with Cuties® California Clementines from Sun Pacific. Rather than settling the matter, however, our decision only fueled the proverbial fire, and to this day — as you all know — debate rages over which Clementine offers the most delightful and refreshing citrus “experience.”

Now, ten days later — time we spent reflecting on this important issue — we were eager to see if and how the situation had changed. We had placed our order with Fresh Direct and the delivery had arrived. As we unpacked the goods, our mind raced with questions: Would the Cutie peels still be saggy and withered? Would the fruit swim with seeds, any one of which can cause a most disturbing crunch? Would each segment be uniformly sweet? As for Sweeties, would they still be delightfully juicy, with a zesty flavor and fragrance that make it impossible to eat just one?

Alas, we regret to inform you that a definitive response on this most critical of issues must wait. Although the Clementines arrived as scheduled, they were not delivered in a box of white balsa wood and paper adorned with our favorite Clementine slogans — “So Sweet!” “Easy To Peel!” — but were carelessly jammed into a generic mesh bag that gave no indication at all as to their origin. Furthermore, all of the fruit was horribly lumpy and misshapen, and the taste was not much better, with segment after segment exhibiting a hard, fibrous texture that made us think of apples! True, based on our prior assessment, we were inclined to say these sad specimens were Cuties, but it hardly seems fair to castigate without the hard evidence we so clearly lacked. By the same token, we doubted that these could be Sweeties, but isn’t history filled with victories that in retrospect are the harbinger of steep decline?

We admit disappointment but not defeat; we have ordered more Clementines and expect them to arrive soon.


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