Who, I always wonder when I go on runs, would be the type of neighbors who would mind if I relieved them of a bit of the fruit hanging from their trees. Between the overladen persimmon, orange, tangerine, fig, grapefruit and lemon trees all within a three block radius of our apartment, we could nearly knock out our weekly fruit budget. Considering we go through 5 lbs of oranges a week, stealing fruit from the neighbors would almost be like getting paid to run.
I tend to think that the houses with couches on the porch and peeling paint jobs, clearly inhabited by college students, wouldn’t even notice if I stole their fruit. Bob Marley curtains should be license to rescue those persimmons before they all fall to the ground and rot. But sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference between college student house run down, and elderly person house run down. Maybe all those lemons really belong to a grandmother, who looks out her window all day long, wishing she still had the strength and agility to pick her lemons and turn them into curd or lemonade. Or the money to pay someone to fix her broken porch swing. I can’t pillage in the yards of the invalid.
And the well-kept homes are just as hard to distinguish. Is it well-kept rich and snooty who aren’t ever going to actually eat the fruit of their tree, but don’t want you touching it either? Or well-kept because they love their neighbors and want them to have fruit?
I tend to believe that houses with lots of Christmas decorations want their fruit stolen. Because people who have lots of Christmas decorations must like their neighbors, or else why would they pay ridiculous electricity bills for all of November and December? Unless they are just showing off, in which case, they are just asking to have their grapefruits taken away. Nobody likes a show off.
Also, that one house with the tie dye sarong hanging in the front window and the Volkswagon with the “Marriage=Love” bumper sticker parked out front? They are clearly hippies and want to give me their fruit. Too bad they don’t have any good trees out front. What kind of hippies don’t grow fruit? Hippie fail.
So far, I leave the fruit alone because I’m too chicken to steal, or ask nicely. The only citrus theft I engage in is pulling down the lemons off the tree that hangs over from the neighboring apartment complex. Actually, I mostly leave that work to the seven year old downstairs, who gets the lemons down either by throwing rocks at the tree or climbing the fence, because they are always far higher than he could ever manage on a chair. I don’t worry about it, I just thank him for the sad little green fruits that he delivers to the doorstep.