It is difficult to think anything but pleasant thoughts while eating a homegrown tomato.
Lewis Grizzard · 1946-1994
Besides a no-show peanut sprout prior to entering Kindergarten, this summer heralded my first attempt at growing something more nourishing than a flower garden. I confidently invested about twenty-five bucks in two tomato seedlings and supplies, including a newfangled upside-down tomato planter, then doomed the first plant to failure by placing it in a spot with limited sun exposure. Learning from my mistake, I cultivated the second plant in full sun, where it grew tall and sturdy. A week or so after being blown down by a summer storm, I harvested its only tomato:
After sitting on the kitchen counter for a week, my tomato ripened to an impressive deep red. Although it looked ready for eating, I was still apprehensive about doing a taste test. What if my tomato was bitter? Or sour? Or full of salmonella? Or harboring a microscopic parasite that will turn my internal organs to mush?
Finally, my curiosity got the better of me, and I sliced it open to reveal its perfect deep red meat. And it tasted as good as it looked.