Thursday, August 21, 2008

Damned Canadian Peppers

When one thinks Canada, the first thing that comes to mind is obvious: yellow bell peppers. Apart from maple syrup, maple leaves and William "Maple" Shatner, Canada also exports yellow bell peppers. The cowardly cousin of both red pepper and the increasingly popular and eco-friendly green pepper, the yellow pepper is often favored for its colorful complement to pepper-themed meals. The tastes of each are extraordinarily similar, but no matter. It's colorful and fun.

Or so one would think.

Upon preparing a Canadian yellow bell pepper for quartering, slicing and impalement on a metal skewer, where it will remain while roasted over an open flame, one first removes the dime-sized sticker that advertises a fruit or vegetable's origin. During a recent cookout, one such sticker was removed to reveal a rotten hole in the pepper.

"Canadian bastards," was my first thought, but then I got to thinking. Is this not typical commercial behavior, the type that transcends nationality? Covering one's own ass at the expense of someone else's. One would hardly expect it from the Canadians, but there it is. Quality and standards might still play a role in the global market, but they're diminished to the point that their presence is naught but a gratuitous, meaningless cameo, like Burt Reynolds in "Smokey and the Bandit III." And like the audience of "Smokey in the Bandit III," the consumer is assumed an idiot by the producers, who are of the mindset that as long as shit is shoveled into the market and wrapped in cellophane, people will buy it, enjoy it and wallow in it, all to the tune of "Eastbound and Down."

And now that same mentality has physically manifested itself in Canadian yellow bell peppers. But like the rotten pepper hole, corporate flimflam can be avoided with a little effort. Just cut out the bullshit and use the good parts.

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Anonymous said...

not sure what's worse here...the flimflam of corporate america, the bell peppers or the 'effin Canucks. i likeee