Fruit Fetish

If you are a member of the Super Rich, and I hope you are, you probably buy your fruit in Japan. Because no one does fruit like Japan, except maybe a pricycle (look it up).

I started following Japanese fruit fancies back at the turn of the century, when I didn’t sound like an old person by using phrases like “turn of the century.” That’s when I first heard about square watermelons.

Japanese farmers started growing watermelons in the shape of a square whose dimensions fit exactly those of the standard Japanese refrigerator shelf. The convenient shape took up less space in what was prized real estate, given the size of Japanese fridges.

My initial reaction was, “Square watermelons? That’s so fucking weird.” But now, after thinking it through and recognizing that we here in the United States make mini watermelons, my reaction is, “Square watermelons? That’s still so fucking weird.”

These cubic crops are not cheap. They go for about $82 a square melon. For comparison, Tokyo’s real estate average is about $7,600 a square foot. So really, your watermelon should be paying more for taking up all that space.

Which is probably why a pair of Japanese cantaloupe melons sold at auction last year for $15,730.

Slightly more affordable are bananas. Gokusen bananas sell for about $5.70 each. To be considered worthy of this “premium” produce moniker, the banana must be at least 23 centimeters in length and weigh no less than 200 grams. (According to Dole, the average banana weighs around half that).

Some surveys list Japanese men as being on the lower end of the penis size scale, and one has to wonder if this banana fetish is correlated in any scientific way. Ok, one doesn’t have to wonder, but I will anyway. Where are the data?

I feel like I am digressing. Where was I? Penises. No, wait. Fruit.

The Gokusen bananas come in their own box and are often given as gifts. Which should make Justin Timberlake and the Lonely Island proud.

You also can’t be just anyone to pop a Japanese cherry. In some shops, where fruit is laid out in cases like jewels in Tiffany’s, a box of cherries can go for nearly $160. So you better really want that juicy flesh.

Why do the Japanese love their fruit? Why do the French love their wine? Why I am writing this? Actually, because initially I was going to bring this round to some argument about inequality and luxury goods. Clearly that didn’t happen. I got sidetracked, probably right around the time I mentioned penises. But on the bright side, I can write about inequality another day and for now go get angry that my watermelon keeps rolling around my fridge.

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The Porn Ultimatum

The Colorado House this week unanimously passed a bill to outlaw revenge porn, which means I can no longer blackmail my ex-lover by posting nude pics of him on the Internet. So there goes Friday night’s plan.

The risqué rumpus began when Colorado Springs resident and balloon with hair fuzz Craig Brittain launched a web site that posted nude and explicit photos of people without their permission. Critics named it “revenge porn,” but Brittain called it entertainment, saying his objective was to “be big and make money.”

Admittedly, it’s a good business model, especially when you refuse to remove any photos unless the victim pays the Take Down Lawyer $250. An investigation found that Brittain and the Take Down Lawyer used the same IP address and likely the same computer. Extortion? I say he’s just creating operational efficiencies.

Brittain’s real stroke of entrepreneurial genius was linking the photos to people’s Facebook and other social media profiles and to the victim’s phone number. Brittain calls this “background information” to help viewers really get to know who they are looking at and explains that he tells the site’s users not to call the phone numbers.

That’s great customer service, because how is a user supposed to search for that kind of information when he’s got one hand under the desk and the other reaching for a Kleenex?

In an interview with Denver’s local CBS news station, Brittain repeatedly stated he does not want to shame the people whose photos are on his site, which is presumably why—when asked by the journalist why he refused to remove their pictures when they asked—he calls the victims flagrant liars. Because nothing says respect like calling someone a flagrant liar and posting nude photos of them online without their consent. #Winning!

Hats off to Colorado for pushing this bill forward (although all other clothing and accessories will stay on, since I don’t want to risk any freaky photos popping up anywhere). The legislators and attorneys who helped shape this bill have renewed our faith that you’re not all high.