He Ate the Whole Thing
by Sean Takats
I only knew Roy for a little over a year, but I can tell you one thing about the guy: he really liked apples.
When Roy ate an apple – as he did at nearly every lunch – he began in a completely ordinary fashion, orbiting around the fruit with a series of bites just like anyone else. Move along, nothing to see here. When only what might be considered a typical apple core remained, Roy then began to take smaller nibbles of the few remaining bits of fruit flesh, exposing now the seriously fibrous components of the apple. Again, nothing you or I haven’t done with an especially delicious apple or on a particularly empty stomach.
If the stem hadn’t already come off of its own accord, Roy now removed it, a signal to those in the know (Population: Me) that things were about to get a little weird. All attention had up to now remained essentially tangential or parallel to the surface of the apple, but now Roy turned inward, attacking the core itself. No matter how many times I witnessed this performance, which by the way was entirely wordless and unselfconscious, I kept expecting him to stop, to pitch the core in the garbage can, to call it a day. But Roy persevered. Woody fibers, shiny black seeds, even that little desiccated flowery thing on the bottom. Amazingly, everything went down the hatch.
Before meeting Roy, I had never before witnessed any such display nor do I expect to see it duplicated ever again, and here you might expect me to conclude that such voracity suggested Roy’s zest for life or his constitutional inability to do anything halfway. Or perhaps to propose something even more hackneyed along the lines of a paradise lost or a special affinity for the fruit of the tree of knowledge.
I think he just really liked apples.