From the Vine


For centuries, people used grapes in amazing ways. They used grapes instead of water to quench their thirst. They used grapes as nature intended: as food straight off the vine. People even used grapes as raisins because dried fruit kept longer and could be used in the months when nothing grew on the farm except chickens and teenagers.

Then in 1873, during a heat spell in California, some knucklehead stuck a marketing flag all over the dried grape and called it a “Peruvian Delicacy”. From that simply evil prevarication came the sick ideas of sticking grapes and raisins in everything—everything that never called for it. Grapes in salad would only be good if it’s a fruit salad, and yet more knuckleheads, probably related to that first knucklehead, threw grapes and raisins in a perfectly good vegetable salad. It could be argued that eating grapes with tomatoes is healthy, but the sanity of such an act is questionable.

Grapes in a chicken salad? The chef must have been cleaning out the left-overs in the fridge.

Grapes on a tuna salad sandwich? Was the sandwich-maker drunk?

Raisins in oatmeal cookies? What other way could you destroy dessert? 

Raisins in trail mix? Sure, fine, it kind of makes sense because it goes back to the ancient way of storing food for long periods of time with little effort. The only problem I have with this idea is that it has gone too far. It has become difficult to find trail mix without raisins. It’s come to the point where I have to make my own trail mix.

Cashews? Check.

Peanuts? Check.

M&Ms? Check.

Done. No raisins needed.


To put the raisin craze in even better perspective, did you know you could dry mushrooms? And what if some advertisement industry knucklehead portrayed mushrooms the same way they portray raisins? Would we have dried mushrooms in everything?

Published by Kurt Gailey

This is where I'm supposed to brag about how I've written seven novels, twelve screenplays, thousands of short stories, four self-help books, and one children's early-reader, but I'd rather stay humble. You can find out about things I've written or follow my barchive (web archive, aka 'blog) at or follow me on twitter @kurt_gailey. I love sports and music and books, so if you're an athlete or in a band or you're a writer, give me a follow and I'll most likely follow you back. I've even been known to promote other people's projects.

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