18 February 2008

It's a nice-looking avocado, but does it have an interesting sticker?

I bought an avocado today, not because I needed an avocado, but because I liked the look of its sticker.

We eat an amazing volume of fruit and veggies, and they often come with a little sticker on them to help identify them at the checkout. When I'm washing the fruit and veggies, I peel the sticker off and then get frustrated because I have no idea what to do with it.

Many have been stuck on the kitchen sink, only to have to be scraped off later. Some have been put in the rubbish bin, which has involved opening the rubbish-bin cupboard with dripping wet fruit in my hands. It's never been a great burden, but when you eat as much fruit as we do, this sticker dilemma is a bit of a pest.

About a month ago, I decided to stick them on a piece of cardboard on the wall at the kitchen sink. For good measure, I printed a large picture of an apple on green cardboard, and printed the word "Stickers" in giant letters across the front, with "Ever wondered what to do with your" above it in tiny letters and "Put them here" below it in tiny letters.

I started filling up the chart around the 4 o'clock position and moved (mostly) clockwise. I didn't care much about what colour sticker to put where, I just whacked them on and watched the apple fill up with a sequential record of the succession of different fruits we'd binged on.

Our Granny-Smith craze yielded big white stickers with green apples on them, the dark blue was from some very nice end-season bowen mangoes, but most of our collage is green showing our hopeless addiction to white nectarines.

This little sticker chart started as a handy place to stick my stickers. It's ended up as an obsession.

Just between us, I confess that sometimes I do choose which variety of fruit to buy based on the colour or size of the sticker. For example, stickers on the imported citrus right now have quite a nice little stars-and-stripes on them. Can't go past a couple of those, even though the oranges are a bit dry.

I confess that I do reject sticker-less fruit for those with stickers on them. If I'm buying sixteen nectarines, I'd like to have sixteen stickers to put on my chart.

And sometimes I buy things that are not even on my shopping list, simply because they have an interesting sticker that would add diversity to my sticker chart. Hence the avocado in today's shopping basket with its cute little yellow sticker.

And Lucky Little Me gets avocado on toast for breakfast in the morning.