For obvious reasons, a shitty job. And yet, at least you ain't eating porridge. You are eating pheasant (albeit a poisoned one). Hey, it's a fine and noble way to die.
Yesterday I decided I was the King, as well as the King's Food Tester, all in one. I discovered a mysterious fruit-bearing tree had fallen over the path I walk on my lunchbreak. All this fruit, whatever it was, would soon perish now that this tree was dying a slow death.
In a moment of brilliance, and in hopes to avenge this tree that had so obviously been hit by some fool on a vehicle and left to die, I determined I would find out as much as I could about this fine specimen, and whether or not the fruit it took such time and care to bear was edible and not poison.
So no, I did not simply reach amid its branches, pluck a piece of fruit, and send it down my hatch hoping for the best. No, instead I researched this tree. And by research, I mean I posted a picture I took of this tree on Facebook and hoped I inadvertently was Facebook friends with a botanist or other agriculturalist.
This lead to some creative answers, guessing this tree was anything from persimmon to cherry to crabapple. I have never eaten a persimmon or a crabapple, and didn't really want to start, so I crossed my fingers it was a cherry, but that still left me with questions about the TYPE of cherry it could be.
I'll interject here that I was also excited by this mystery because it could yield a big bag of fruit, for free. FREE I TELL YA! And food's expensive. Who doesn't want free food? Jerks, that's who. And for the most part I am not a jerk.
To determine what type of tree I had, I'd have to take to the Google of it all. Eventually the claptrap of search results lead me to find the Arbor Day web site, which has a field guide for trees.
What an incredibly useful site. I felt as though I could walk up to any tree in the eastern United States of America and determine whether it was a ginkgo biloba or an Eastern Hemlock. However in my tree mystery I learned there are all sorts of botanical terms I needed to figure out about my mystery tree, stuff about the leaf margins, the petioles and all this other scientific stuff I forgot since graduating the 8th grade.
Eventually, however, I came to a definitive answer!
This tree was a Sour Cherry Tree!
At least, I think.
Which means, it's edible! Free food! FREE I TELL YA!
At least, I think. I tried a sample. Still alive, a day later. I think I'm safe!
I'd like to report I picked the fallen cherry tree clean of all its fruit, netting a sizeable bag of cherries, comparable in size to a bag of cherries you'd buy at the grocery store.
It's about two pounds of fruit. California, Bing and White Cherries are regularly $3.99 a pound at my local Shoprite, but two of these varieties are on sale at $2.99 a pound.
I may have saved six bucks, but this time I had a real adventure, which is priceless, I think. Plus I get to make this shit.
My cherry booty: