There’s no accounting for the things you might find on the ground. And that’s why it’s worth looking.
Not long ago I was in Beaverton, Oregon, when I noticed a single crayon at the foot of a park bench. Now that, in and of itself, may be of no great import, but it was the colour of the crayon that got my attention: Asparagus. That’s right: Crayola makes Asparagus crayons.1 And I suppose it makes sense that if someone bought 256 crayons, it’s the asparagus one that they’d throw away.
So I guess the mystery isn’t “Why was that crayond on the ground?” so much as “Why did that crayon get made?”
I don’t know if Crayola had lost a bet with the FDA or the National Asparagus Council and so had to promote it. Or else somebody made that colour, and had to name it. Maybe the guy who’s job it is to name the colours who works in the ‘green’ department is a big procrastinator and didn’t get enough sleep the night before of the deadline and at the big Friday meeting when they had to submit the names for the new line of colours and they came to this sad hue, he panicked and just blurted “Fucking Asparagus!”
Or maybe that guy didn’t procrastinate at all. Maybe someone dared him to name a crayon after the vegetable that makes your pee smell. They say that the special forces of some country or other used to pack asparagus in their packs in case they got stranded on an island — because when you eat it and pee in the ocean it will attract more fish. If this is true I suppose it could lend fuel to the debate as to the adaptive value of being able to smell asparagus in a human’s pee. (What a strange dimorphism…)
It all seems outlandish, because we are well past the edge of impracticality when we are utilizing precious weight and volume for a bundle of a fresh vegetables which may increase the liklihood of catching a fish if their plane crashes, and there are survivors, and the survivors make it to an island with their supplies intact. Whoever was at the ‘what do we put in the backpack’ meeting must have been very persuasive and/or had absolutely no background in risk management.
You might suggest that there is a secret organization exerting their influence to move their product by pushing through government policies that would guarantee sales. Well, if that’s the case, they are the shittiest secret organization ever, because they put their efforts into a very small and temporary demographic. I’m sure they lack expertise in both the insurance and marketing industries. Because whatever they’ve done in the past 50 years, they certainly haven’t successfully made people love asparagus. Under their direction, the legacy of asparagus is an obscure item in an elite soldier’s backpack, and exactly one shitty crayon. Asparagus would not be out of line if it fired them and hired the Kale guys.
1. Or maybe they just made this one, and then gave up, threw it away in Beaverton, and moved on…