I scored a clementine hat trick today by consuming three clementines in a row without encountering a single seed. Don’t laugh at me. This is a big deal. I remember a golden age, not so long ago, where all the little crates of clementines Mom bought came from “Maroc” and seeds were a rare annoyance. Then I moved here to Maryland and had to adjust to new purveyors of produce. Clementines here are “Cuties” or “Darlings” – still sold in crates made of splinters – and look exactly the same as the old ones did. But they’re not the same. They are evil inside. You would think that a small citrus treat marketed as the perfect snack for children’s school lunches wouldn’t have hard nuggets of doom lodged within them, ready to chip teeth and block lungs, but there you have it. I had to develop a new clementine-eating strategy that involved eating them in a room with a good light source, so I could hold individual peeled segments up and X-ray them with visible light.
I can’t handle putting the whole clementine segment in my mouth when there is a real and present danger of seed content. Somehow, I’m supposed to magically get the sweet juicy fruit away from the hard seeds, and then spit the seeds back out. I am to do this without choking on them or cracking a tooth. I can’t figure out how everyone else is managing to perform this trick, so I have to put my clementines through the full-body-sunlight-scanner to detect seeds and pick them out.
That’s why, when I got three sweet seedless Darlings in a row today, I pulled one of these: