THE APPLE

I want to tell you today about an apple.

An apple is a small, round, delicious fruit which grows on a decidious tree.

It is usually coloured red or green.

An apple can be eaten raw straight from the tree but it’s best to wash it first.

It does not need to be peeled but watch out for pests such as grubs.

You can eat the whole apple except the core and the pips.

An apple can also be cooked or turned into a juice or an alcoholic drink called cider.

There are more than four thousand different types of apples but Granny Smith, richly ripe, sweet, juicy and green, is probably the most famous.

The Granny Smith apple originated with a growing method discovered by an Australian lady named Maria Ann Smith in the nineteenth century but nowadays the commercial production of this apple is mainly based in the United States.

The apple tree produces blossom in the springtime and is known for its mystical and magical properties.

It grows on an orchard along with other common fruits such as pears and plums.

The time for the apple harvest is late summer or early autumn.

Kids will, of course, be kids and enjoy the thrill of going ‘scrumping’ to get apples for free from the local orchard.

Beware if the farmer ever caught you and expect a dunking!

It may surprise you to know that Orchard Street in Singapore, perhaps one of the most famous shopping streets in the world, was once a fruit farm.

The apple is the source of  a lot of delicious desserts to eat such as apple pie, apple crumble and apple strudel.

The Toffee Apple, a cooked apple and coated with sticky coffee, eaten from a stick,  has long been a favourite of children and adults alike at traditional funfairs.

When I say the word ‘apple’, your first reaction may be not to think of the fruit at all but of the electronics Company called Apple founded by Steve Jobs which gave the world the I-Pad.

Not only that but the American city of New York City is popularly called ‘the Big Apple’.

Why is that you may wonder?

Some would have you believe that it was because of a quip conceived by a sports writer in the 1920s to do with horse racing and placing bets.

It is much more likely that the concept of New York City being called the ‘Big Apple’ is to do with the fact that fruit was largely known in the deep south of America in states such as Mississippi..

Their residents could not have surely appreciated New York City profiting so much and certainly disproportionately from the fruit farm industry when economic times were harsh.

To coin another more modern fruit idiom, New York City is the ultimate ‘cherry picker’.  Biggest gets best, so it is suggested that they got the best of the apple crop.

I cannot end this talk without mentioning a few famous apple idioms and stories to do with apples.

‘An Apple a day keeps the doctor away’ is commonly spoken.

An apple is considered a healthy fruit, containing essential vitamins for your well-being, so if you eat an apple every day, you should not need to visit a doctor for medical treatment.

‘Apple of my eye’ is one idiom which I particularly like.

The apple is certainly a nice looking fruit, so we often refer to someone such as child or sweetheart and speak the expression as a term of endearment and affection about that person.

What about ‘Upset the Apple Cart’ then?

The cart is a wheeled vessel to transport the apples gathered from the trees to the farm before boxing them and sending them to market.

The idiom is commonly used to refer to something said or done by someone which causes concern or consternation to another in a way that could have been avoided.

Nobody would want to spill the apples from the transporting cart and then have to pick them all up again afterwards.  Repair the damage.

As for ‘apple stories’, William Tell and the crossbow must be top of the list, the father who precisely shoots the apple from the top of his son’s head in a challenge beset to him by the bailiff of a small Swiss town in centuries past.

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs has long been one of my favourite fairytales.

Who cannot forget the part in the story when Snow White is tricked into eating the poisonous apple by the wicked witch?

So there you have it.  Apple.

Thank you for listening to my presentation.

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