Eggsaggerated Fears

Right around the time that our wild black raspberry bush stopped fruiting, the blackberries started to ripen. At first, it was just a few berries per day, then a few more. So, for the last few weeks, I’ve been eating anywhere from one berry to a small handful of berries every day. I do this because the fruit is free, because I love the seasonality and naturalness of it, and because I am proving to myself that I am not afraid to eat something that I found in my yard.

I don’t even like blackberries very much. Even the cultivated varieties seem overly seedy to me. The wild variety is not only seedy, but often sour and grassy-tasting, too. But I’m proving something, you see, so every day I eat a few more.

Sometimes I find weevils or spiders or tiny caterpillars on the berries. I bravely wash the bugs off and eat the fruit. I am not afraid, you see, and every day I prove it.

Now it is peak blackberry season. There are ripe blackberries all around. “Today,” I said to myself, “I will eat a lot of blackberries.” I started picking.

Then I noticed that one of the blackberries I’d picked had eggs on it. Tiny bug eggs. Loose eggs. Eggs getting all over my hands and the rest of the fruit. Ew. I threw that handful of fruit into the woods.

I don’t know why bug eggs are so much more disgusting to me than the bugs themselves. But I do know one thing: it’s fortunate that I don’t have to forage to survive. I would never make it as a forager, because I am, apparently, afraid of bug eggs!

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