Fruit

An apple a day keeps the doctor away, or so the saying goes. Don't you believe a word of it. Doctors are a hardy bunch: they're used to the sight of blood and most of my colleagues are pretty handy with a scalpel. Oh yes, it'll take more than a piece of fruit to deter most hardened medical professionals, so next time you see a consultant radiologist brandishing a sharpened thermometer, or a paediatrician swinging his stethoscope in a menacing manner, you might as well set the banana aside and drop the seedless grapes - you're going down, son.

Good evening. My name is Dr Adolphous Bongo, and those of you who have been worrying about where I've been just lately will be relieved to learn that I've recently returned from supporting Bon Jovi on a major stadium tour of South America. Hang on a minute - some of you ought to be saying - a family doctor booked as a support act for an eighties poodle rock guitar combo? There's something not quite right about that. Well exactly - I should have been headlining.

But, we were talking about fruit, weren't we. Come on, pay attention, this stuff could save your life. It's part of my job, I'm told, to provide healthy living tips to my patients. Preventative medicine, it's called, and I very much approve. Anything that can stem the flow of filthy and diseased cadavers that comes sluicing into my waiting room every week gets the big thumbs up from me. I now make it a priority to deliver such advice to the small sample of patients who are shrewd enough to find me in my consulting room, and agile enough to slip past the bouncers.

I keep it basic, obviously, since if you start with the assumption that everyone around you is a fucking retard, you rarely ever need to explain yourself twice. For example, I discuss matters such as how to prevent stabbing yourself in the head with your cutlery, why it's a bad idea to smear food preparation areas in liquid fertiliser, and we discuss the relative merits of eating food packaging rather than the actual contents. These things can often be easily demonstrated through the use of simple diagrams, though it is not beneath me to resort to hand puppets when necessary.

Yes, so, back to the fruit. I do wish you wouldn't keep side-tracking me. Now obviously, healthy eating is not just about taking the appropriate precautions to avoid choking on crockery, or ensuring that you don't insert bits of yourself into the wrong end of a food processor. Actually, I don't think there is a right end of a processor into which it is advisable to wedge portions of your person, but I've no objection to you experimenting. These considerations aside, at some point you're inevitably going to have to consider the tricky subject of food.

Some foods are good for you. Some foods are bad for you. Stop me if I'm getting too complicated. Carrots, for example. Carrots are sharp and pointy, and you could easily have someone's eye out. Best to avoid carrots completely, unless you envisage some kind of vegetable-based organic knife-fight scenario. And even then, you're better off with a parsnip. Cheese, obviously, can be treacherous underfoot. Especially that really slippery cheese, you know the one - French, I think it is. You may think it unlikely that people would leave cheese lying around on the floor in such a hazardous and unhygienic manner, in which case you would be seriously overestimating the cleanliness of the vast majority of my patients.

And then there is fruit. Oh yes. Dangerous though cheese is, the destruction and devastation that it can precipitate pales in comparison to the horror that can be unleashed on an innocent world by a carelessly mishandled kumquat.

Oh, I know that fruit can appear so innocent - all lined up, moist and glistening in your local supermarket or boutique. But in my opinion - and in the opinion of many of my less intellectually challenged colleagues - fruit should be banned. Or at least, only available under special licence so that ordinary fartabouts like you can't get hold of it.

And that is why I'm campaigning for restrictions on the sale of these despicable receptacles of evil juice. I look forward to the time when depraved costermongers can no longer peddle their sinful plums to grubby delinquents. I welcome the day when your average pleb will need to pass a series of police tests to obtain a licence to operate a grapefruit. And I shall rejoice when we finally see the ratification of a treaty to ban the international use of watermelons, and the harshest penalties for all those who persist in deploying these saturated citric death pods.

And if ever I feel that my resolve is weakening; if ever I feel that my aims lie beyond my reach, I will think back to one muggy night in Rio when, before my very eyes, I saw the drummer of Bon Jovi viciously laid low by a casual mango fired from the third row of the audience. Then my vigour will be reborn. This one's for you, Tico...

Return to Doctor Bongo's Casebook

Copyright © Paul Farnsworth 2012

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