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The broccoli is smiling at you
October 22, 2008 11:43 AM   Subscribe

"She handed me the box and I studied it carefully, squinting, even allowing my eyes to blur, to try and see what I was missing. She pointed- 'Do you see?' See what? I didn't see anything. Just broccoli. Her finger tapped on a certain part of the box and she urged me to look closer. 'There- right there. Do you see it? I'm not going to tell you what it is if you don't see it.' And then, it suddenly became clear to me. WHAT THE HELL?"
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing (67 comments total) 27 users marked this as a favorite

 
and if you hold your ear to the box you can hear, ever so softly,

"Freemasons run the country!"
posted by The Whelk at 11:46 AM on October 22, 2008 [6 favorites]


Just watercress.
posted by StickyCarpet at 11:49 AM on October 22, 2008


It's people! PEOPLE!
posted by elfgirl at 11:52 AM on October 22, 2008 [13 favorites]


Whoa, what? Whoa. What?
Whoa.

What?
posted by lostburner at 11:53 AM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


Gah, that's just creepy!
posted by Nattie at 11:57 AM on October 22, 2008


Also, from the same blog:

On Thursday morning, I woke up with a sudden urge to make bread. Having a day ahead of me with nothing planned and a new bag of bread flour...

What kind of Beatrix-Potter-ass life is this liberal no-job hippie leading? I want it.

I like this blog.
posted by lostburner at 11:57 AM on October 22, 2008 [5 favorites]


Soylent green broccoli? Pod people?
posted by cjorgensen at 11:58 AM on October 22, 2008


I remember when the broccoli people moved in next door. There were five of them, or rather, five heads emerging, smilingly, from a single piece of broccoli. They were friendly and good-natured, happy to answer our questions about their kind. They disabused us of some common misconceptions about their world. They had not, in fact, been created by the family of Cubby Broccoli; neither had he used his family's broccoli fortune to finance the James Bond movies. That was an urban legend. But it's true that broccoli is high in vitamin K, and it may be that broccoli will help with certain forms of cancer.

They were terrific hosts, always with a compliment or a joke, and were always happy to have us over as guests. They served delicious meals and made great cocktails. We often went bowling with them, and our kids grew up with their kids.

Sometime into the seventh year of knowing them, we ate them. Never regretted it either. We used a lot of butter and steamed them. Delicious.
posted by Astro Zombie at 11:59 AM on October 22, 2008 [37 favorites]


I found a slug in my broccoli once but this... this is way, way worse.
posted by bondcliff at 12:00 PM on October 22, 2008


PETA has gone too far. Greenmenschen?
posted by Dumsnill at 12:00 PM on October 22, 2008


Now I understand why I find broccoli so damn delicious.
posted by naju at 12:00 PM on October 22, 2008


From the comments:
Graphic designers often do that; they rely on people not noticing it. Those faces are probably the designer's friends or family, maybe coworkers. It's a bit of subversion of the corporate machine mixed with a call out to their friends (look! you're in a magazine!) (or in this case, on a box of frozen food).
So, really? Anyone know of other examples?
posted by Miko at 12:02 PM on October 22, 2008 [4 favorites]


Broccoli is the semen of vegetables.
posted by [NOT HERMITOSIS-IST] at 12:05 PM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


That broccoli is Cascadian Farms brand. They've been putting tiny faces of employees, family and friends on the labels since at least 1995, which was when someone first showed me this on the labels of Cascadian Farms jams when I was first working at Fresh Fields (later bought by Whole Fooods). CF has since been bought by General Mills, but it seems the tiny faces continue.
posted by jocelmeow at 12:11 PM on October 22, 2008 [12 favorites]


I read everything by [NOT HERMITOSIS-IST] as sarcasm. As in,
Broccoli is the semen of vegetables. Not!
-Hermitosis-ist
posted by lostburner at 12:13 PM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


My mom uses friends' and family-members' names (and exagerrated characteristics, but not actual pictures) when she writes case studies for psychology textbooks.
posted by MrMoonPie at 12:15 PM on October 22, 2008


So, really?

Really. I did this ALL THE TIME in my work with the high school yearbook.

Southwest Virginia Toyota dealers, I hope you've forgiven me for replacing the Toyota logos on all your cars with Ford logos in the ad section of the 1996 and 1997 yearbooks... What? You never noticed?

Never mind.
posted by infinitewindow at 12:18 PM on October 22, 2008 [2 favorites]


"I do not like little people and I haven’t liked them since I was a little kid and my mother made me eat them. And I’m President of the United States and I’m not going to eat any more little people. Now look, this is the last statement I’m going to have on little people. There are truckloads of little people at this very minute descending on Washington. My family is divided. For the little people vote out there: Barbara loves little people. She has tried to make me eat them. She eats them all the time herself. So she can go out and meet the caravan of little people that’s coming in. "
posted by mandal at 12:18 PM on October 22, 2008 [5 favorites]


Broccoli is the new soylent green.
posted by steveburnett at 12:18 PM on October 22, 2008


I suppose it says more about me than the package of broccoli that I saw the upward protruding stem as a clitoris (labia to the left).
posted by spock at 12:20 PM on October 22, 2008 [3 favorites]


Just checked the bag of Cascadian Farms cut green beans we had in the freezer. No faces, as far as I could tell.
posted by Lucinda at 12:21 PM on October 22, 2008


If you look at it even more closely? Millions and millions of little, tiny dots! Is that all EVERYTHING is made of?! I want to run, but there's noplace to run TO!
posted by not_on_display at 12:21 PM on October 22, 2008 [5 favorites]


On a more serious derail... does anyone know of any good food blogs that focus on Mexican Food?
posted by spock at 12:22 PM on October 22, 2008


I was expecting the broccoli pic to have penises or something in it.

The internet has ruined me.
posted by Dr-Baa at 12:22 PM on October 22, 2008 [6 favorites]


1.) That lead in was one of the best I've clicked here on MeFi.

2.) Oh my god, that's incredibly creepy.
posted by thatbrunette at 12:32 PM on October 22, 2008


Broccoli: the Little Box of Horrors.
posted by SPrintF at 12:33 PM on October 22, 2008


I was expecting the broccoli pic to have penises or something in it.

If it did, surely it would be attacking Kasparov?
posted by mandal at 12:34 PM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


If I show that to my kids, I'll never get them to take another bite of broccoli again.
posted by carmelita at 12:35 PM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


Reminds me of this hilarious prank by Slarty Bartfast.
posted by Rhaomi at 12:38 PM on October 22, 2008


You know what this is? This is rapid-acting nutjub fuel. Point this out to say, Mr. Timecube, and you'd have another wildly colored, 40-page rant up in SECONDS.
posted by The Whelk at 12:39 PM on October 22, 2008 [2 favorites]


I have a whole freezer full of Cascadian Farms products at home. Now where did I put the magnifying glass?
posted by caddis at 12:41 PM on October 22, 2008


Dear god.
I've seen it; I can't unsee it.
posted by Spatch at 12:48 PM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


So, really?

I used to slip in pictures of friends/family all the time when I worked at a magazine.
posted by mikepop at 1:02 PM on October 22, 2008


Hey Miko I have an example. I have all my friends and family members as the faces of brain injury on the brain injury association website because It was funny, and photos are royalty free.

I've also put my own initials in a beer bottle that I was photo correcting... I had to move droplets around because the glycerin they used to simulate the water droplets got smeared, and I arranged a few to make my initials... I think i got caught for it though, shortly afterward I was fired. I won't be doing that again.
posted by joelf at 1:08 PM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


I have a bag of Cascadian Farm broccoli right here. No faces. My broccoli is boring. Rich in calcium, but boring.
posted by The corpse in the library at 1:10 PM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


Reminds me of this hilarious prank by Slarty Bartfast.

Some unknown person here spilled the beans to the Mrs. and now the tiny faces are no more. For now.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 1:12 PM on October 22, 2008


jocelmeow: Please to provide examples or else.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 1:14 PM on October 22, 2008


The Whelk: "and if you hold your ear to the box you can hear, ever so softly, "Freemasons run the country!""

Okay, that's a pop culture reference, and now it's going to bug me to death that I can't place it. Help me, someone.
posted by WCityMike at 1:37 PM on October 22, 2008


Help me, someone.

The Simpsons, when Montgomery Burns went crazy, Howard Hughes style.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 1:38 PM on October 22, 2008


I couldn't click until I'd read the comments here first . . . just to be sure it wasn't Brocolloatse.
posted by isopraxis at 1:40 PM on October 22, 2008


Marisa Stole the Precious Thing: "The Simpsons, when Montgomery Burns went crazy, Howard Hughes style."

Oh, right, the germs he saw on Smithers. Thank you. Metafilter: quick relief for earworms.
posted by WCityMike at 1:48 PM on October 22, 2008


Oh! Maybe they're those kind of vegetables.
posted by aftermarketradio at 1:49 PM on October 22, 2008


I know a man who got his paycheck in one of those inherent envelope things on which random "Chinese" looking characters are printed so that you can't hold it up the light and read the check amount. He pointed out to me "Chinese" characters which, when pointed out, clearly read "FUCK YOU RONALD REAGAN."

And this was last year!

I wonder how many billions of these paycheck envelope things that say that have been doled out (presumably since Reagan was president) with almost no one noticing.
posted by Dee Xtrovert at 1:51 PM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


help me......help meeeeeeeeee...!
posted by Kronos_to_Earth at 2:02 PM on October 22, 2008 [4 favorites]


neato! I love stuff like this. It's folkorific - counterhegemonic personal expression.
posted by Miko at 2:09 PM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


As if I don't have enough trouble getting myself to eat enough green vegetables. I'd really like to not have to worry I'll become some sort of semi-cannibal.
posted by droplet at 2:27 PM on October 22, 2008


This is like a scene from a thriller, where a guy is confessing to his psychologist that he thinks he is losing his mind, he is paranoid all the time, and is sure people are watching him because he knows the secret. The terrible secret of space. He whispers it to the doctor and then runs from the office.

The doctor is puzzled because all the guy said was "it never ends" but she shrugs it off and continues her day, only now she is feeling a little bit like someone is watching her. She can't quite shake it off either, she keeps getting glimpses of someone in her peripheral vision. Unnerved, she makes her way into the most well lit place she can find, a supermarket. She is near panic when she goes into the refrigerated foods area, hoping the cooling air will help to calm her. She stops before the vegetables, starting to get herself under control, she thinks about maybe getting something to eat. Then she notices the broccoli, and her skin begins to crawl as her eyes are inexorably drawn to the smallest parts, which are watching her...

She screams, and flees, never to be seen again. When the cops are investigating later, the cashier tells them that he heard her saying "when will it end?" right before she left. He wondered what it meant.

Now he'll never know.

Only the broccoli has that answer.
posted by quin at 2:40 PM on October 22, 2008 [7 favorites]


I'm just bemused that you can buy frozen broccoli florets, actually. It would never have occured to me that people would not either buy fresh broccoli or go without. This is the same sensation I got when discovering that in North America there are different grades of juice depending on how much pulp you like.

I'm not criticising, I just find the phenomenon of frozen broccoli more puzzling than faces on packaging.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 4:19 PM on October 22, 2008


frozen broccoli?? What the fuck c'mon...... thats so..
mate, do yourself a favor, throw out the broccoli and eat the box.
posted by lacol at 4:36 PM on October 22, 2008


*ha you can tell when all the antipodean's come online, were like.

"You freeze Broccoli"!?
posted by lacol at 4:53 PM on October 22, 2008


I recognize that face- it's Broccoli Rob.
posted by Liquidwolf at 5:01 PM on October 22, 2008 [8 favorites]


I work for the company which does most of General Mills' prepress, including Cascadian Farms. I'm not sure if we have the CF vegetables, but I know for a fact that those faces are not my coworkers.
posted by nathan_teske at 6:16 PM on October 22, 2008


One of the them looks sort of like Rachel Maddows - Rachel since her MSNBC hair and makeup.
posted by Lesser Shrew at 6:23 PM on October 22, 2008


One of the them looks sort of like Rachel Maddows

If true, this has the potential to be the most bizarre lawsuit in recent memory...
posted by naju at 6:53 PM on October 22, 2008


not_joe's_spleen - why not freeze and sell broccoli, or any vegetable? Are frozen veggies not sold in New Zealand? I would guess my intake of frozen vs. fresh vegetables is easily 50/50 (and probably leans heavier toward frozen in the winter months), and I don't think I'm a particularly lazy or atypical American. We eat frozen vegetables because that is what's available a lot of the time; they're always about the same price (instead of buying lousy out-of-season fruit or vegetables imported from around the world at outrageous prices) and the quick freezing (I understand) makes them even more healthy vitamin and nutrient wise than eating fresh (which may not be "fresh" by the time it gets to your plate).
posted by yhbc at 7:02 PM on October 22, 2008 [2 favorites]


Fresh vegetables turn into really-not-fresh-vegetables in my house about 75% of the time, and wind up in the trash. Frozen veggies? I keep them in a zip lock bag, and only take out and microwave-steam what we will eat. Saves money, saves time.

I should probably buy fresh broccoli, cut it up and freeze it.

In any case, this is better than what I grew up eating. All vegetables were canned. All of them. I hated beets, brussels sprouts, and spinach. Disgusting. My wife introduced me to frozen and fresh vegetables, and I discovered they are pretty darn good. Especially brussels sprouts, which are *awesome* if you do them right. Cut 'em in half, steam 'em real quick, then sautee them just a moment. Beets are really good, boil them like potatoes, then peel the skin off and serve with butter. Even my kids love 'em.

Oh, and faces in the broccoli? Creepy at first, but hey, they are all smiling. Pretty cool, and funny.
posted by Xoebe at 7:14 PM on October 22, 2008


yhbc: the climate is sufficiently mild here, and the country sufficiently small, that the range of frozen vegetables is quite small: green beans, sweet corn and spinach are the main kinds available. Brassicas like broccoli grow all year round.

I'm not saying frozen broccoli is wrong. I can see that if you live at extreme latitudes, it's that or scurvy. But it's just weird!
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 7:26 PM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


In the US you can get most anything frozen. A lot of families make one big shopping trip every 2 or 3 weeks, so frozen stuff keeps more reliably. Plus convenience foods are big (frozen broccoli is pre-chopped).
posted by LobsterMitten at 7:41 PM on October 22, 2008


Huh. Well, I suppose I'd buy and eat (cheap, locally-grown) fresh broccoli year-round if I could, too. This is a funny kind of cultural internet moment, because I was thinking that not eating frozen broccoli was weird!
posted by yhbc at 7:46 PM on October 22, 2008


I'm not saying frozen broccoli is wrong. I can see that if you live at extreme latitudes, it's that or scurvy. But it's just weird!

In my part of the States, the growing season ended a month ago, and we get no more local produce until about June. So it's either frozen (or imported) veggies for most of the year.

Now I'm off to the supermarket in the middle of the night to look for little faces on my vegetables.
posted by AsYouKnow Bob at 8:08 PM on October 22, 2008 [2 favorites]


Yah fresh staples are done gonei out of season. Asparagus is going strong and you can do a lot with gourds and Parsnips, but frozen Spinach and broccoli fills the freezer.
posted by The Whelk at 8:28 PM on October 22, 2008


And peas! fucking peas! I would eat them fresh EVERY DAY FOREVER AND EVER, but fresh peas are rare and frozen peas are a sad, sad replacement.
posted by The Whelk at 8:31 PM on October 22, 2008


Bush Sr. probably knew more about broccoli than he was willing to share with us.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 3:51 AM on October 23, 2008


People are joyous greens!
posted by Elmore at 6:11 AM on October 23, 2008


I always knew there were tiny little heads but no one would believe me. Nope. Old Doctor Schlock had flipped his gourd, they'd say, but look whose laughing now. Now get off my lawn!
posted by doctorschlock at 10:29 AM on October 23, 2008


Why do you think it's called a head of broccoli?

Frankly, that's my favorite thing about broccoli. The tiny, screaming human heads. So delicious and crunchy.
posted by loquacious at 10:51 AM on October 23, 2008


Metafilter: labia to the left
posted by CynicalKnight at 2:56 PM on October 23, 2008


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