“Do I Dare To Eat A Peach?”
When I wash my apples in the kitchen sink, they emerge clean, dewy, and labeled. I try to peel off the label with a fingernail or the tip of a paring knife, but often take off some fruit skin with it exposing flesh which soon turns brown. I could just bite in and eat, label and all, but can three or four labels a day be good for you? Are labels digestible? Biodegradable? Do they contain vitamins? Germs? Will they weaken my immune system?
Labels probably started harmlessly with Chiquita Banana, but have spread into peaches, pears, plums, nectarines, and tomatoes, each lovely globe defaced by a carbuncle-shaped flake of plastic that says something like, “Red Delicious 2742,” It’s probably so checkout clerks don’t have to learn the difference between a Rome and a Granny Smith. Some even have bar codes.
Once you could avoid labeled fruit by avoiding major supermarkets, but now they’re in Whole Foods, specialty fruit stores, even street corner fruit stands. The only label-free fruit within my reach is at the Union Square Farmer’s Market, but I expect labels to show up there too. Even now some evil genius of horticulture is breeding trees which sprout organically labeled fruit on the branch.
Labels have become their own reason for existence. Nero, my Bide-A-Wee adopted cat, carries a label on a chip implanted in his neck. Will human babies be labeled one day, or considering DNA, are they actually labeled the moment they are conceived?
From my Crystal Ball: In fifty years every human is DNA-registered at birth and goes into a data base, there to reside until death, then archived. An implanted EEG/GPS/MRI chip continuously scans the brain’s ionic current flow which is monitored by a quantum computer located in Newtonia on the Moon. It detects criminal behavior before it happens and deactivates the potential perp before the crime is committed. The PP [potential perp] revives, but with no crime having been committed, is not charged, and after a course in Behavior Modification, is returned to society. The only lingering problem is what, exactly constitutes a crime, which changes depending on whether the Democratic Republican or New Whig party is in power.
The project is funded by an independent SuperPac, Labeled and Loving It! Motto: Your DNA is You!, and opposed by the Anti-Lable Libertarians led by Roy Paul (son of Rod, grandson of Rand, great grandson of Ron). They'll never give up but no one pays them much mind. A few loose nuts rattling around can be entertaining and do no harm in this brave new crime-free world.