Fruit Baskets – The Ultimate “F–k You” Get-Well Gift.
If you really want to get back at somebody and inspire shock and horror, forget “Godfather” inspired, severed horse heads in your enemy’s beds. That’s amateur hour. The worst gift you can give to that frenemy in your life, is a LARGE Edible Arrangement. The best part? There’s no recourse except a socially mandated thank you note for ruining their day.
I’ve received two Edible Arrangements as “Get Well” gifts in my life. The first time was after I was released home from the hospital to recover from a grueling emergency c-section after two days of labor. My mother-in-law sent me a ginormous one as a “get well” gift. Food is a wonderful gift to send to sleep and time-deprived new mothers. But the sneaky thing about this food gift is that it’s the ultimate Trojan Horse to a convalescent. It looks large and amazing, but it ultimately is a way to fuck the recovering recipient over. This highly perishable, 20 lb + fruit basket of cut, skewered fruit needs to be disassembled and stored in tupperware to actually fit into a fridge, unless you have a restaurant-sized walk-in refrigerator. Even then, the convalescent still has to bend down and rearrange the fridge to actually make room for the bags and bags or tupperware containers of fruit salad on steroids. Plus, I was not supposed to lift anything heavier than my infant and that Edible Arrangement, was easily over 25 lbs and I’m pretty sure I popped some stitches accepting that delivery. Forever after, if I saw an Edible Arrangement delivery van even driving by in the street, I made sure to flip them off.
My dear husband Teddy has been home recovering from back surgery to repair two herniated lumbar discs that were giving him excruciating sciatica. Now, every wife and mother, dreads it when their MVP is sick. Worse than an absentee husband, is a sick husband, which is the equivalent of another child. Luckily, my husband is a trooper in all things sickness related. He has never suffered from the debilitating “mancold” that strikes so many husbands down. But it’s pure physics, there’s only one of me and now I have to drive my husband everywhere for the next ten days and do all the little bending, lifting and countless extra household duties my husband can’t perform.
Not complaining mind you, but establishing my stressed-out frame of mind when the doorbell rang two days ago, and there was another godamn Edible Arrangement, the extra deluxe, large kind with a half-dozen “Get Well!” mylar balloons attached. The delivery guy, was dangerously purple in the face from carrying this heavy arrangement up our steep driveway. After I signed for it, he warned me, “This is really, really heavy. I’m not kidding.” When he transferred it to my arms, I gasped and my legs buckled. It was easily as heavy as my 34 lb. kindergartener and about as tall. The balloons got stuck in the doorway and somehow, I managed to bob and weave into the kitchen and get it onto the countertop without dropping it on my toe.
I had a million items on my to-do-list that had been shoved over from the day before, when my husband was getting surgery. And now, I had pounds and pounds of cut, fruit I needed to store and find room for in my real-estate challenged fridge, mere days before Thanksgiving. There was no way two adults and two kids were every going to make a dent in that before it went bad. Worst of all, it was composed mostly of hard, unripe cantaloupe and honeydew – the cheap filler in fruit salads. I felt sick to my stomach from waste of it all. So my morning was derailed by having to break down, fill up multiple freezer bags and rearrange my overcrowded fridge to store fruit nobody really wanted to eat.
Yesterday, I was still trying to figure out what to do with the detritus of the Edible Arrangement (filler, ceramic basket, skewers and the rest of the fruit I couldn’t fit into the fridge) when yet another fruit basket arrived from a different friend. So the saga continues. But Marie Barone from “Everybody Loves Raymond” said it best during that classic episode where Raymond gets her a “Fruit of the Month” club membership. “I can’t talk. There’s too much fruit in the house.”