A Bag of Apples, Pears and the Orange

Based on a true story.

A woman walks into a local grocer to purchase apples for an apple. It’s her daughter’s birthday and she loves  mom’s Granny Smith apple pie. Anna likes all kinds of pies but today she wants the apple pie. Mom grabs a cart and happily strolls the isles for all the things she needs for the pies. flour, sugar,  butter, Cinnamon and other tasty ingredients are plucked from the shelves and carefully placed in mom’s cart. She checks her list and heads off to the fruit and vegetable section to get some apples.

Mom walks up to the bins containing all sorts of fruits. Boxes and bins of newly delivered produce are stacked on the floor.  She smiles and her own excitement rises thinking about her daughter’s special day. So many wonderful, colors and aromatic fruits are on display. But the apples are all in bags. No worries she says to herself and skips over to the island of apples. They are all beautiful and fresh. A flash of bright green catches her eye and mom know’s she has found exactly what she is looking for. The sign above reading “Fresh Granny Smith Apples”, “$2.00 a dozen”. Mom is pleased and picks through the bags of Granny Smith apples A puzzled look replaces her smile, something is wrong.

A stock boy walks buy and with  she says to him: “Excuse me I am looking for Granny Smith apples. I seem to have found them but all these bags contain 6 Granny Smith apples, 5 pears and an orange. I see you have lots of bags of Gala apples, oranges, cherries and pears. But the Granny Smiths are in mixed bags.”

“Yes, ma’am but they are all fruit so deal with it. ”

The woman is a bit dismayed at the stock boy’s response. But she is  not one to judge so quickly thinking to herself, maybe he is having a bad day.  She politely speaks to him again. “I’m sorry, I really only want Granny Smith apples today is it possible to get a dozen Granny Smiths?”.

“What you don’t like all that fruit or something. What’s wrong with you lady?. Those pears are green too and that orange is just as much a fruit as the apples. This is a grocery store and we sell fruit in this section.”

The woman is deeply disturbed by this young stock boy’s attitude. She wonders what she has done wrong to deserve such a rude reception. She simply wants Granny Smith apples today. No sooner does she count to 10 and gain her composure when another stock person, a older woman, comes over noticing the discussion. The woman explains her situation as other customers filter into the fruit section. The older woman talks to the stock boy and turns to the mother and asks her what her problem is?

“This is all fruit and these bags are Granny Smith apples. Take the apples and make your pie.”  the older woman proclaims and storms off to the back of the store.”

The other customers in the area are shocked by what they just herd. And come to the mother’s side. They talk amongst themselves wondering why they cannot purchase just a bag of Granny Smith apples. The stock boy hovers near by and berates  the group of customers for for their discussion. Several of the men and she wants Granny Smith apples and you are chastising her for this? What kind of customer service is this?”

A handful of mangers come over. The older stock woman obviously in tow.

One of the managers immediate blurts out. “Fuck you lady and the horse you road in on. We will hear nothing of this. I am going to report you to the police if you don’t shut up right now.”

Another manager chimes in. “What are you some kind of world class chef and think you are better than all of us? You are obviously a bad person and we are sick of you coming into our store and complaining about all f out fruit. You come in here to our store and attack our business and our employees. You are a mean and spiteful person who obviously does not know how to cook or what an apple is.”

The customers and the mother are in utter shock. What have they done? This women only wants to buy a dozen apples. A dozen Granny Smith apples in fact.  And another customer then three speak out saying the same thing. They only wanted to purchase Granny Smith apples at this time. The are fine with the other fruit but that is not what they want or need right now.

Several of the customers again speak out an turn to other customers and other passing managers. There voice is the same. Why can we not purchase Granny Smith apples? Why are they being attacked by these manager and even some other customers who drop in and drop out just as fast as they came. Never knowing or understanding the situation, some of the other customers chastise the mother and call her things she is not.

One customer speaks up proclaiming that she will just take her business elsewhere if that is how they all feel. A group of managers and customers descend on this women like wolves ready to devour her. Calling her crazy, a liar, an elitist even making threats against her. “We will find you and we will destroy you.”

One manager manages to speak out one last stab as more customers come to the aid of the mother who simply wanted to Purchase Granny Smith apples.”Lady this is all fruit. You make you pie with it and be happy about it. Tell your daughter its all the same anyway there is no need for her to know there are pears in her apple pie. She doen not need to know there is any difference between different kinds of fruit.”

The mother did not need or want pears or the orange. She loves oranges and she loves pears. She buys them often for her family. But apparently in this store you cannot buy just Granny Smith apples. The customers talk amongst themselves wondering what terrible crime they have done. And why they are being called names an accused of things they have not done. They wonder why they are attacked by the store and other customers for even asking why they cannot purchase just the one kind of apple without getting all the other fruit too.

Yes the pears are green and they look very similar to the Granny Smith apples. Yes the Orange is a fruit but they are not the same. The store is advertising all kinds of fruit and they are all yummy in their own right and have beautiful qualities that make them different but equally as good. But as far as the store and some of the customers are concerned it’s all fruit and you cannot cannot buy just Granny Smith apples. In fact too even talk about selling bags of Granny Smith apples will earn you the label of being a bad customer and even a hater of other fruit.

As I said this is in fact based on a true story. A very disturbing story of sometimes militant reverse activism in the LGBT community. It is why certain portions of the LGBT community are so divided. They all proclaim their support of each other publicly for the most part and profess all inclusion. This is fine. Its great. There is strength in numbers when we can all work together at the right time.  With the diversity in all things in nature so is true of human kind. We are not all the same even though we do all deserve equality and protections under the law. But to form coalitions or even discussions around these differences is a crime. Yes a crime where you will be attacked and discredited for even mentioning that the Granny Smith Apples though fruit are not Pears or Oranges. This is not an attempt of discluding anyone as some would have you believe.  We tell our kids what the difference between an apple and an orange is and that they are both good. Why can we not do the same with people?

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