Sometimes it's better to keep your mouth shut and just quietly chew your food
They say you can’t please them all, and if you are, you must be doing something wrong. Well, let’s overachieve, shall we.
WARNING: If you’re overly sensitive or already dislike me, move along now. You have been warned! I’m sure there’s some meme’s you haven’t yet seen on Facebook.
A citrus grower recently asked me while standing next to his young mandarin trees if I liked Cuties. Surmising that he meant the fruit grown in local citrus groves and not the two-legged kind I paused. He laughed, knowing the predicament he just put me in.
If I respond “why yes, of course” in a clear and positive tone of voice because I’m an Ag reporter and I’m smart enough (maybe too smart for my own good) to know he means the brand of mandarins marketed by Sun Pacific (I lied, I just looked that up online so I could get it right) he might bury me right there with his back hoe because his are marketed under Sunkist’s Smiles label or by Paramount Citrus under its Halo brand.
“Why yes, I love mandarins,” I say in my best politically-correct tone of voice, wondering in the back of my mind if he was watching me at the grocery store when I picked up the bag of… er… mandarins.
The faux pas don’t stop there.
While I’m admittedly a vocal fan of almonds and pistachios as a snack, never joke with someone from the Almond Board of California about how addicted to pistachios you are. The awkward silence was deafening. That may go over well with the nice folks at the American Pistachio Growers organization, but it probably doesn’t win friends with the good people who work hard to promote almonds to global buyers and consumers.
Can I just have some cashews instead? I really like cashews! Macadamia nuts? Walnuts? This hole is getting deeper, isn’t it?
Good grief! It’s not like I asked for margarine at the dairy association dinner because it spreads easier… did I just say that out loud? At least I didn’t run off at the mouth about how awesome some guy's farmstead cheese is with my grilled ham and cheese sandwiches while enjoying lunch with someone equally as proud about his particular artisan cheese.
And what’s a good cheese without a good wine? I think I’d rather walk up to a bee hive and kick it repeatedly than go to a wine association meeting and have to respond honestly to the question: “how do you like my wine?”
Does it come with water? It’s a little dry!
Why is it so wrong to ask for a good Paso Cab while eating at a restaurant in Napa or to admit in a room full of California winemakers that the Washington State Riesling I had with dinner the other night is quite delicious and I may just have to buy a case?
Just give me good food grown and produced right here by an American farmer and I’m happy.
Pass the crow, please!