Upon one rather dreary morning I set off to my local place of purveyance in order to purchase some comestibles. On my rather short journey, as the boutique of sorts was only around three hundred metres away from my abode, I came across what my mind decided was a pineapple, growing out of the ground.
“Impossible” I thought so loud that everyone within a metre of myself could hear. Alas, there was no one around to hear it. Dismissing it as a figment of my imagination probably brought about by maybe the milk on my cereal being somewhat older than is commonly acceptable I continued on my way.
Upon reaching the shop I approached the aisle whereby the bread is stored and picked up one loaf of thick sliced white bread. I also realised to remember that my cupboards at home were becoming alarmingly bare as I eat food quite often. So I began collecting off the various shelves, varying food stuffs, which included: eight thick pork sausages, one tin of baked beans in tomato sauce, six free range class A eggs, one two litre bottle of beer shandy and a box of matches.
“Good sir shopkeep,” I started “upon my way here I happened upon a pineapple sprouting itself from a crack in the pavement not far from here. Am I hallucinating or is it actually possible that such an event could occur?” Being a simple man, the poor shopkeeper could not grasp well my handling of the question, and not being good on replies or conversation he merely answered thus: “I don’t know.”
“Then I shall just purchase these items I have here and I shall be on my way,” I said to him, not wanting to engage further in conversation with a man who it seems could quite easily be outwitted by a glass of reduced fat milk.
On walking back to my humble abode I once more spotted the pineapple growing forth from the very road upon which I was walking. I decided I was going to leave it where it was for now and eat my lunch; as such a thing is more important. I cooked my lunch, which consisted of four thick pork sausages, two slices of thick sliced white toast with margarine, a whole tin of baked beans in tomato sauce and one fried egg.
After I had eaten this rather small by my standards lunch, I set out forthwith in investigation of this phenomenon that was occurring almost directly outside my house. My lunch had not settled yet and I had not washed it down with shandy but I was too curious to be bothered about such trifling matters.
The pineapple was the same as any other pineapple I had ever seen apart from the obvious fact that it was growing from the ground. I moved in for a closer look and gently touched its rough surface. Upon doing so, it shook, and I determined that this was a rather volatile pineapple, and certainly not like the ones I’ve seen in magazines, unless I’m reading them in the wind.
I returned once more to my house and acquired a pair of tongs and a pair of gloves from the cupboard they were situated in. I was determined to solve the mystery of this pineapple. To my horror on reaching the spot where I assumed the pineapple was previously I found nothing but a piece of paper, stapled into the concrete.
I now began to believe that perhaps the shopkeeper had contaminated my comestibles with some sort of mind control serum he may have created in a laboratory he may or may not own. Upon jumping to this rather foolish conclusion, I marched myself all the way up to the shop where I at once found that my theory was probably more accurate than I had previously imagined.
There he was, with the pineapple in his hand, standing outside his shop, grinning at me like the idiot he quite obviously was.
“Excuse me sir” I at once called out “but I do not think you qualify for ownership of that pineapple for it was situated outside my property, but upon a piece of land that I myself happen to own”
“Hello there” was all he said.
“I am ever so sorry my good man but your use of conversation techniques is quite simply awful. It leaves much to be desired. Either tell me why you believe the pineapple should be yours or relinquish your grasp upon it.” My rage was becoming quite apparent now as I spoke in a slightly louder tone than usual.
“I want to sell this pineapple in my shop.” This was the first time I had ever heard him say more than three words in a sentence.
“That is a fairly good reason my good fellow man but it unfortunately is not yours to sell.”
“Did you read the note I left?” It seems that he had now mastered the art of questioning.
“Why, I do not believe that I have. I hope that if I go back to where it lies I shall be able to understand it and then return here forthwith and hopefully reach a form of compromise. I shall be as quick as is humanly possible.” And so I ventured forth back towards my home and the piece of paper stapled into the concrete.
As soon as I had reached the spot where it lies I closely examined the paper and staple. To remove this hand-written note from its lodgings would result in almost certain damage to the paper, as the staple was one of great size, much larger than your average sized staple for sure.
On closer inspection I came to the conclusion that this piece of paper had nothing written upon it, as it wasn’t even folded. My rage was growing by the minute and at that moment I heard a loud explosion coming from the direction of the shop.
My first thought was to look at the spot where the pineapple once lay and there I saw something quite alarming. The reason this pineapple was volatile was because I had been using slang all the way throughout this non-fictional description of events. It was not a pineapple at all but a grenade, left there by some careless cadet no doubt. Unfortunately, the shopkeeper was none too clever as I had once explained and thought that by my mentioning a pineapple it was actually so.
He had stolen this grenade from me and must have intended savouring its ‘fruity goodness’ when he caused the distraction by sending me to read his note. The poor, poor man.
The moral of the story: Do not fear the stupid for they shall in time wipe themselves out.
I am in no way claiming that shopkeepers are of less intelligence than your normal human, I just needed someone to use in my story. I expect there are some very intelligent shopkeepers out there but likewise I expect there are some who match the description of the one in my story.
© Kris Blackburn 11/08/03