I was hanging out with a guy and his girlfriend the other day and she mentioned how she wanted to go apple picking, to which he responded, "Why do girls love it so much?" Three things popped into my head. The first: "Yeah it's pretty fucking stupid." The second: "That waitress has some bombs." And the third:"Blog time!" Like many female-related curiosities I've had in the past (Miley Cyrus, vaguebooking, why Fez from That 70's Show fucks all the hottest women in the world), I've enlisted the help of my friend over at Mid-day Margarita to better understand the fuss about wasting a perfectly good fall afternoon by walking around for three hours, doing something that could be accomplished in three minutes at the grocery store. Here's the conversation.
Jimmy T: Just a heads up, this may end up on the site so don't include any nudes. I wanna know why girls love apple/pumpkin picking so much.
Ms. Margs: No nudes is going to be hard given the subject matter...
I mean, there's no huge mystery... when the weather is nice, you want to be outside. And when you live somewhere lame in the fall—like, say, Connecticut—you're pretty limited to apple orchards and pumpkin patches, and, like, graveyards.
Jimmy T: You'd be surprised at how fun a game of Find the Guy Who's Family Loved Him the Least Based on His Tombstone can be.
And I get the appeal of being outside in the fall, but do you have any idea how many things you can do outside? Outside is a huge place. Even in a place like Connecticut, there's restaurants with outdoor seating and parks and frisbees and everything. There's got to be more to it than just being outside. What makes a girl bug her boyfriend for three months about the absolute need to go pick apples?
Ms. Margs: Well, it's a bonding thing—if a guy won't take his girlfriend apple picking he obviously doesn't love her. It's a wholesome activity that reminds us of having a house and kids. Also, we might get a decent face tan if it's sunny out.
But it's also the time crunch. Maybe it's because of the whole biological clock thing, but anything with a deadline is obligatory. Apple season is only so long, so you need to get out there before it's too late. And what if you never make it at all? You have to wait a whole year and you just wasted your entire fall. Time cannot be wasted. Ever. It's like when summer is ending and you're not tan enough. What was the point of that whole season?!
I just gave myself so much anxiety about apple picking.
Jimmy T: "Anything with a deadline is obligatory" is written above your desk in cursive, isn't it?
You're a girl so I'm assuming you've been apple picking at least 2.4 million times so you know what it's like. I've only been once, and I can best sum it up as, Who cares if apple picking season expires?!? The orchard smells like the guy who sleeps on the subway laying down. There are more flies than apples. And most of the apples look like burn victims. The best case scenario when leaving an apple orchard is that you found four partially edible apples and your shoes are only kinda ruined.
Am I wrong? Did I get a bad orchard? Maybe my shoes were already dirty before I got there?
Ms. Margs: First of all, I'd like to thank all my friends for still hanging out with me even though I say things like "Anything with a deadline is obligatory"...and actually really mean it.
Second of all, I agree that the apples are not the best part of apple-picking. They are one of the most boring fruits out there. But I'm kind of a klepto. There's nothing better than almost-free things. I know you're supposed to buy the apples, but how would they even know if you eat them all on the way? It's the same feeling as taking handfuls of free ketchup packets— nothing better.
Then there's the cute store that sells apple cider donuts and those caramel apple lollipops. And what about all the photo ops? I would get so many likes on an Instagram of me under an apple tree.
I think you may need to give it another chance - it kind of sounds like you didn't go to a real orchard. It smelled bad and all the apples were rotten? Are you sure you weren't just under some crab apple trees in a parking lot somewhere?
Jimmy T: Hey I've passed out in a lot of parking lots before, but never one with two miles worth of apple trees. It was a real-life orchard, in Connecticut no less, the apple picking capital of the world. I get the klepto thing in general, though. I'm the reason Panera stopped keeping "water cups" near their soda machines.
I'm glad you brought up Instagram, AKA the only reason girls do anything ever. If it weren't for Instagram guys wouldn't be subjected to apple picking or walking through Central Park in the fall when the leaves change. Admit it—it's not about the apples and it's not about the leaves, it's about your Followers.
Going back to this: "Apples are not the best part of apple-picking. They are one of the most boring fruits out there."
A quick list of my three most exciting fruits:
3) Clementine - I was blown away by the concept of clementines 'til I was like 15. It's just like an orange only 1/3 the size!
2) Pineapple - You can put it on your ham. You can put it on your pizza. You can dip it in chocolate. You can line it up in the slot. So versatile, it's like the Kordell Stewart of fruit.
Ms. Margs: Coconut, fig, mango, only cause they're my fave.
Speaking of social media in autumn, someone I know recently posted a screen shot composite of multiple guys on Tinder posing with pumpkins in a pumpkin patch (I am not supporting Tinder in any way). So clearly you are not the only one who thinks girls just LOVE apple/pumpkin picking.
While, as I've been saying, I think they are both fine afternoon activities, it's not my favorite thing in the world. I don't anticipate it all year long - or swoon over a man holding a pumpkin. Where does this idea that girls die over the fall harvest come from?
Jimmy T: Uhhh do you live under a social media rock? My Feeds (IG, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tinder, Pinder, Napster, Hipster) are filled with statuses and captions like "Picking pumpkins with my pumpkin!! :)" and "I'd trade my child for a pumpkin spice latte right now. Seriously I would." Other than complaining, I literally can't think of a single thing in the world girls like more than pumpkin-anything. Pumpkin cake. Pumpkin coffee. Pumpkin muffins. If pumpkin condoms aren't a thing yet, someone reading this who's smarter and more motivated than I am can run with it, it's a billion dollar idea. Just Paypal me 5% and we're even. Make sure you send it as a Gift because those fees for Goods/Services transfers are annoying.
The one advantage I will give pumpkins over apples is you can carve them. Well, you can carve apples too but people would look at you funny. You ever carve anything cool into a pumpkin?
Ms. Margs: I didn't know we were talking about pumpkin-flavored things. I LOVE pumpkin things—pumpkin bread, pumpkin donuts... all of it. Except pumpkin pie, which is so gross. So I guess I do have a pumpkin thing. Does that have anything to be with me being a girl? I don't know. All guys like Subway sandwiches and beer—I'm not going to ask why. It's just science.
I haven't personally carved anything besides your standard jack-o-lantern face into a pumpkin. Growing up my dad used to do the elaborate patterns, and I would "help." But my favorite pumpkin was one my friend made a couple years ago. She carved the word "McRib" complete with the golden arches as the "M."
Jimmy T: Yeah I guess I kinda went on a tangent there. My point is that pumpkin picking = pumpkin-related thing = girls wanna marry it. Unlike girls though, I don't need to go to the pumpkin patch to pick out my own carving pumpkin just to feel like I raised it myself, I'm more than happy going to Stop & Shop and adopting someone else's for $4.99.
Here's my one career attempt at carving a pumpkin. Can you guess what it is (the right obv)?
Ms. Margs: I think you like pumpkins just as much because these are impressive. Nice owl.
Jimmy T: Damnit! Fine... pumpkins are awesome. Apples suck, though. Fuck apples.