Updated: Oct 13
At work last week, I prepped what seemed to be an inordinate amount of peppers.
I was having a particularly shitty day – ho-hum in the doldrums – when I cut into my 20th or so pepper.
I cut off the top and sliced the flesh from top to bottom. I carefully cut around the core – cutting away all the white bitter bits. Inside my pepper was another pepper – in the shape of a heart.
I became so excited.
It’s a sign from the universe, I said to myself.
Everything is going to be okay.
I showed my two female server friends.
“What do you see,” I asked them.
“Wow, it’s a perfectly shaped heart,” They said.
“What do you think it means?”
One server said, “It means there’s love inside us all.”
“It means we are full of hope and potential just waiting to get out,” the other server said.
Then I showed my magic pepper to the kitchen staff – all dudes.
Let's just say they saw something different.
They were unimpressed. Some of them didn’t see a heart at all. They saw other things…
“But look at the heart-shaped pepper inside,” I pleaded.
“Do you know how many peppers I’ve cut into that have had peppers inside them?” said the head chef.
He’s right. Finding a pepper inside a pepper is a common phenomenon. It occurs when a pepper is picked before it’s ripe. Then, a plethora of fertilized seed ovaries grow, or something, and another pepper forms inside.
This might explain why the kitchen staff could only see the pepper’s reproductive attributes, or maybe their hearts are in their pants.
At any rate, I saw love. They saw sex.
I stared at the pepper. Now I could only see what they saw – sacks and sacks of seeds.
I began to doubt that my pepper was really in the shape of a heart at all.
Then I learned the name of this “pepper inside a pepper,” phenomenon.
It’s called Internal Proliferation.
Sure, internal proliferation explains the reproduction part, but I’d like to believe it’s a sign from the universe.
I’d like to believe it means that we are full of light and love and hope and desire and all kinds of good things waiting to be uncovered.
It means that things are happening on the inside.
Even if we can’t see them, yet.
I’d like to believe that.