Pith off my clementine



There’s a way round the “don’t like it/never tried it” debate. Food tastes better off other people’s plates. Known fact. Our palates are mysterious this way. Science only goes so far, after which metaphysics take over to do things like make the Elsa yogurt tubes taste better than all the rest (especially the Sven ones).

I digress.

When asked if she’d like a clementine, my daughter consistently declines. If I’m eating the last one in the house however, she’s all over it. It must be rationed one segment at a time though. Given the whole, overwhelmed by the wealth, she’s sure to leave it sun-drying on a window ledge somewhere. Or, her cup flowing over, she’ll dole it out to the wiener dogs. If the seeds hadn’t been bred out of these Cuties, there’d be vast orchards growing in their tiny guts. That’s what I tell her anyway. Then she has the nerve to point a finger at them for flatulence. Which will happen when dogs eat oranges, but sometimes it’s hers.

On the rare occasion she accepts the initial offer (she’s famous for changing her mind), she usually insists on peeling it herself. Which really means she’s going to garnish the couch cushions with it. Or her car seat. Between her collection of pine cones and flower petals, and the fruit peels accumulated at the seat backs and door pockets, I’m convinced she’s on the cusp of a custom potpourri blend.

I’ve digressed again. The point:

Her latest quirk gives me pause. Just as I might get pithy with her, she’ll offer up a juicing, mangled, little wedge. Past all my petty annoyances the notion shimmies through, she’s learned to share. And I’ve learned not to look too long or hard… because what’s a dad to do but accept it?


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