Monday, January 24, 2011

Perspective. Or 'The Persecution of Prunes'

In the greater perspective of things a blog written by a bunny has very little importance.  I was feeling that this week, hence my silence.  My determination to write regularly and rhythmically was overthrown by the pissanty feeling of blabbing n’importe quoi in the face of birth, death, glory, tragedy throughout the world.
The thoughts did come, and I wondered if they were worth writing about.  I ate a prune.  I thought about the tragedy of the prune.  What is must be like to spend a life so under-appreciated, so vilified, so uncomfortable for people in fruit shops to buy.  Why? Just because someone who spent too long in the pool once referred to themselves as one, or someone called their mother a shrivelled, dried-up old one to get a reaction one dark day deep in puberty.  I’m sure it’s just because someone once said they’re good for movement downstairs.  So what?  I’m sure lots of fruits are.  Fibre – ew.  Poor prunes.  Persecuted for being good for you. 
It must be just terrible to be so unfairly branded.  To be so interminably unfashionable.  The cause of a thousand sneers and derisive giggles.  Who decided prunes were bad?  If you traced it back to the beginning I bet it started with some kid in a primary school, poking his finger at a sweet, harmless prune, turning all the kids against it. The world’s greatest ever smear campaign.
Sometimes when I feel bad for someone or something, I think of someone who once said to me that no matter what, there’s always someone wishing they were just that person or thing you feel sorry for.  That everything depends on Perspective.  You never can assume what someone or something is feeling.  That always makes me feel better.  And so I thought, who knows, maybe the prune enjoys its life as an outcast?  Maybe it likes the peace and quiet of sitting so long on the shelf and of not being fetishised and devoured like say a strawberry or a mango.  Maybe it’s happy just being a plain old no-fuss prune.  Maybe it enjoys its solitude.  Maybe it revels in the negative attention, like a Goth.  Maybe it’s laughing at us all and having great parties.
And I thought lots of thoughts like this and I didn’t write them down because I then thought of Perspective and how in the grand scheme of things maybe prune persecution didn’t matter so much.  Perspective is great but it can really constipate you artistically.  You can’t afford to think too muchEspecially when you like writing about silly little things.  You start thinking things like, how can I write about prunes when there are floods in Australia?  People have lost their lives!  And your fingers on the keyboard turn to stumps and you have to crawl under the covers and get really tiny and warm and try as hard as you can to empathise and be a better person and remember to keep Perspective on things.
Today I had the good fortune of having a lovely midwife in a building in a room that looked over the rooftops of Paris and all its monuments to the east run me a bath shaped like a big smooth white shell and put four drops of something heavenly in it and tell me to run the bath really full, and the bath was very very high and I felt so awfully guilty about Australia and the drought and the floods that I had to keep reminding myself as I sunk into the bath’s heavenly depths that I was in France and there was no water shortage nor other current natural disaster.  Which made me feel even worse for all the poor people back home who were suffering, and here was I in a watery cocoon, the Eiffel Tower casting its shadow across my archipelago.  And as the midwife came back into the room to insist I fill the bath deeper so as to be completely submerged, I had to remind myself again that nobody was being directly hurt by my indulgence.  Images of yellowed gardens and buckets in showers and four-wheel drives floating in vast expanses of iced-coffee continued to flood my mind.  I shut my eyes tight.  I tried to gain Perspective on my current situation.  It was just a bath.  It was ok.
And then when I was as shrivelled as a good, nasty old prune I finally got out.  And I must say, being one felt excellent.


  1. Here's a bit of perspective to add to this delightful tale. A young girl (not technically accurate but we'll run with it) takes a time out from her list of today's "to do's" to shrivel up on her couch and read of silly little things that are never really silly things but usually highly entertaining and insightful musings which add colour to her day. She thinks it is always good to have the bigger picture in sight but there is a deliciousness to these tiny little details...... even dried up prunes! x