It was during yet another wide-ranging lunchtime conversation at work that I learnt the word “fruitarian”. Fruitarians, apparently, will not harm any living thing. So they will not pick an apple from a tree, in case it harms the tree, but will eat only an apple which has fallen from it.
This strikes me as being like people who will buy goods from the dodgy guy in the pub if he assures them that “it fell off the back of a lorry“, but would recoil in horror if he told them that he’d actually nicked them off the lorry.
Many foods thus available to normal vegans (well, they seem normal now) are not going to appear on a fruitarian’s plate. It would be hard for them to explain to fellow zealots how, for example, they were eating chips. Lettuce, cabbage, carrots are all also out. They seem doomed to a life of apples, bananas and chestnuts.
Where most of us would swear violently and think ourselves extremely unlucky if we were hit on the head by a falling coconut, fruitarians would regard this as being manna from heaven (they are allowed to eat manna from heaven, if they ever find any).
Fortunately for them, Tinman Publications are here to help, with our new book – Gifts from Above, a list of foods that fruitarians can eat that they might not otherwise have thought of. Among these are anything which (a) has fallen from above and (b) is dead (Wile E. Coyote does not count, therefore, as he appears to be indestructible). Here we go:
- Octogenarian Squirrels
- Chestnuts (you mentioned them above, I hear you say, but don’t ignore the mine-like outer shell, it’s how they make Ferraro Rocher)
- Plastic bags (they must blow out of the tree eventually)
- Lemmings, if you’re at the bottom of the cliff
- Birdshit, or, for that matter
- Blue Ice
- Tree-huggers who fell asleep
- Tree-houses (a large one can provide food for an entire winter, especially if you’re willing to eat the cushions inside)
- Vultures, if they’ve died of starvation expecting you to die first
- Twigs (serve them as All Bran, no-one will know the difference)
- The parrot from the Monty Python sketch
My book will offer tasty recipes for serving all of these (apart from Icarus, of course, who already comes lightly-toasted), but this raises an interesting philosophical problem. Are fruitarians allowed to read books? After all, books come via a long process that begins by subjecting trees to a fate quite similar to that of Robert Shaw at the end of Jaws. Well, my books are printed on re-cycled paper, which I think is fair enough, I reckon you can only kill a tree once, this time doesn’t count.
Buddhist vegans, who believe in re-incarnation, may beg to differ.
You may feel that I am mocking fruitarians here, but reflect upon this. If Eve had been a fruitarian, we’d still be living in Eden, safe and warm.
If a little hungry.