It is with the confidence of someone sliding into a random’s DM that I’m just gonna slide right back and continue as though there hasn’t been a post for 17 months.
Shit happens. Shit is still happening, but I’ll eventually get to writing about that when I can put my thoughts into a cohesive order.
So today is national (in the USA) watermelon day. I know this completely random fact how? My branding site, Tailor Brands has this really cool feature which generates seasonal logos, except those, are not my seasons. Nonetheless, it’s pretty interesting what other countries and cultures celebrate. Added to the juxtaposition of the reality of current affairs with the seemingly inane. My motherland Zimbabwe is burning, our futures uncertain, and watermelons have that same day dedicated to them.
Anyway, when I saw the logo, I did a double take because the immediate thing that came to mind was the Jim Crow Watermelon. It’s been so well documented, that I’m not even gonna go into it (or put a picture). If you don’t know about it and are remotely curious about Juneteenth and how a fruit moved from being a symbol of black self-efficacy and freedom to one of uncleanliness, laziness, childishness, and unwanted public presence, click here and here. Watermelon symbolism strikes a peculiar chord with me as a black person of African heritage and descent, who has always lived in Africa but is aware of American influences. It’s made me rather confused because racial symbolism generally transcends continents and cultures, but Jim Crow imagery, in particular, doesn’t strike as emotional a cord with me as other racist imagery. I personally don’t fancy watermelon (or papaya and its cousins) as a fruit, maybe that’s why.
So I googled it and discovered that what was being celebrated was the Millennial Watermelon. You know the one – it’s in salads, gin and vodka infusions, and summer drinks. There’s actually a non-profit for watermelons or rather 1500 watermelon growers. Oh, and here’s a random watermelon trick that I want to try at some point in my lifetime called melon moulding. I saw it on Instagram a while back and was so fascinated by it. I can’t be blamed for my child-like wonder for the random and absurd. Heart-shaped watermelon (yay!).
As I continued to ponder at the back of my mind about the changing lens on the meaning of watermelon and the cord strikes with me, I randomly remembered the Beyoncé Watermelon. The one she was drinking. I’m for that kinda watermelon. In fact, cue the music…