I was talking with Luke the other day.  He has a quest to find the Perfect Apple. This past fall he was sold an apple by a Scout on the street and it was the Ultimate Apple.  The texture, the flavour, all conditions were exactly right for the Best Apple-related Experience of his life (apart from Leopard, one assumes).  In his own words:

 a scout sold me the perfect apple this fall. ever since I have been trying to find out what kind of apple it was. when I go to the store I buy 1 or 2 of every kind they have and try it. Then I rank the apples by crispiness, sweetness, texture and colour until I can again find the perfect apple

I’ve been doomed by some 12 year old kid to search the earth for an apple. I even try eating them while walking home from the store in an effort to recreate the conditions of the apple

I don’t think even cowbell can remedy this disease.  We talked for a while about this and other conditions that render us something apart from the mainstream (mine were reading Canadian history for pleasure as opposed to grades, fountain pens/calligraphy and mucking about with Linux. Turns out we share two out of three of those).

The apples, though, reminded me of my youth.  I was  a Cub Scout for three action-packed years.  Each Thursday we would gather and pretend that we kept our nails as well groomed each day as the were on Thursdays (this was part of inspection, you see).  I managed to lose my baseball glove at Cubs.

One year, I participated in Apple Day, which is a day when the young men (and now young women, apparently) of Scouts go out to the highways and by-ways of their communities and hawk apples.  I’ve seen them since and I always feel for them.  For whatever reason, the powers that be choose the first really, really cold day in October without fail.

My own experience was not so much about the cold temperatures but the cold, hard cash.  I had managed to get it into my head that apples cost a dollar.  I went door-to-door, I stood on the corner, I walked many a mile, selling apples for $1.  I raised $64.20 in my three hour stint.  I sold a tonne of apples.  I raised a tonne of money.  The $0.20 was from a lady who didn’t have a dollar so I said “I don’t know, I guess I could sell you a couple of these “I Bought An Apple Today” stickers for your kids.”  She was happy with that and the kids enjoyed the stickers.  It turns out that apple day is ‘pay what you wish.’  I bilked most of my neighbourhood out of 4-5 apples worth of money for each apple I successfully sold.  Unfortunately for me, there was no prize or recognition for raising the most money.

yer not comin’ in