Tomato Tomato

I’m in the park writing this on my phone and a woman is standing here next to me. She’s looking at me and eating a tomato.

Right off the bat she seems like the weird one, but I usually am. It’s likely that the bench I’m sitting on is reserved for dogs, or my coat looks like a coat babies wear in the Netherlands, or today is the the king’s half-birthday and I’m the only person not wearing commemorative orange socks. Who knows.

She just took a huge bite, so juicy that someone could have recorded it and used it as sound effects in a horror movie where the zombie takes a bite out of a woman’s neck. “That sound gave me chills” a girl will say to her friends as she walks out of the theater, and one of her friends will tell her it was just the sound of someone biting into an apple. But it was a tomato. I saw it right here in the park with my own eyes.

She’s still taking bites and still staring at me but why? I’m dressed pretty normally. I’m staring at a phone, like all normal adults do. I took a shower last night.

Boaz and I started taking showers every night a year ago. When you shower at night you don’t bring the sweat and dirt of the day to sleep with you. Our bed is a temple, he told our friend when we were explaining the night shower routine. He said it with such seriousness that she thought it was a Jewish thing. “Oh right,” she said. “Or some people call it synagogue.” And we had to explain that it’s not a temple, not really. But maybe she was onto something.

If all it takes to make something holy is to do it differently, and with intent, then maybe showering can be. Maybe sitting on a bench can be holy too, if you really stop and notice the people around you, and where they’re looking and what they’re eating. Maybe a snack can be holy too, if it’s a very specific snack. Like maybe a tomato.

(This photo is by Wright Kitchen you can click here to see a print.)

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