August 23, 2008

You say tomato, I say tom-ah-to

Sometimes I forget that tomatoes don't just come in red–they can also be green, yellow, orange, or anywhere in between. These beauties to the left were at the Green Market in Union Square last weekend. As I photographed them in awe, the woman next to me looked at me with a bemused expression on her face, nudging me, "They're beautiful, aren't they?" It's universal, I think, to stop and look at tomatoes when they're this beautiful and ripe. They are the star produce of summer, defying categorization as fruit or vegetable to most. To me, they seem to be both.

Speaking of fruits, I guess I've been a little obsessed with Banana Yoshimoto lately. A couple days ago I finished Goodbye, Tsugumi sitting on a chair inside a branch of the New York Public Library. It was just that good. Anyway, here's another quote from the first book of hers I ever read, Kitchen:

"I was not afraid of burns or scars; I didn't suffer from sleepless nights. Every day I thrilled with pleasure at the challenges tomorrow would bring. Memorizing the recipe, I would make carrot cakes that included a bit of my soul. At the supermarket I would stare at a bright red tomato, loving it for dear life. Having known such joy, there was no going back."
-from Kitchen, by Banana Yoshimoto

So all it takes sometimes is a bright red tomato to remind you of the joy in life. Or a bright green one, or a bright orange one. I certainly felt reminded of the vibrancy of life as I was staring at those cheerful tomatoes at the Green Market through my little Canon lens...