Writing, Writing Prompts

Multiple Prompt Post 1-22-22 A Machine With Taste

Your prompt for #JusJoJan and my very first birthday-Stream-of-Consciousness-Saturday is: “icing on the cake.” Write about the first thing that comes to mind when you think of the phrase “icing on the cake.” Enjoy!

First off, I have to apologize for yesterday’s post. I kept thinking it was Saturday all day because Dave was home. That really throws me off my schedule, plus I was kind of hobbling around, much like today with these sore knees, may have affected my thought processes. I put the SoCS tag on a post that definitely was not- yet could be interpreted as- stream of consciousness.

Now that it is Saturday, let’s get on to my multi-prompt post and hope everything fits into place this time.

I wanted to tell you about a machine I read about this morning from Gastro Obscura that dispenses apples instead of the usual junk food. You can find this trendy vending machine at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. For just one dollar, students there can sample 9 different varieties of apples, according to the season. That’s a tasteful machine!

The cool thing about this machine and its apples is, they are grown at Cornell Orchards’ two locations. Graduate students in the horticulture program do everything from grow the apples to keeping the vending machine fully stocked. All the proceeds support the Society for Horticulture. That’s the icing on the cake if you ask me!

The article made a point of mentioning that it is more than a novelty, it is a point of pride at the university and has been for nearly three decades. They breed new varieties trying to create tastier apples, and these are on display in the machine each autumn. Heard of Macoun or Snapdragon apples? They came from Cornell. Rubyfrost and Firecracker also. They said that creating and marketing a more tasteful apple is huge business these days, an unbelievable 10.5 million dollars went into developing the Cosmic Crisp, a Washington State rival to the Honeycrisp.

I was sad that my favorite apple-the Granny Smith-wasn’t mentioned. David’s favorite is the Gala, which they do have there at Cornell. They also feature the Honeycrisp, McIntosh, Shizuka, and Ginger Gold. In the fall, the offering changes to varieties like Goldrush, while summer showcases Sansa and SweeTango varieties.

What if all universities latched on to this idea? It wouldn’t necessarily have to be apples, just grow and sell products indigenous to the area.

Gastro Obscura has featured many stories about vending machines selling interesting things other than the usual junk food offerings. I covered one last year that featured pecan pies. It’s a novel idea that any school could adopt and then give the proceeds back to the school, or some charity, or like Cornell does…to the SoHo.

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