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Sour Grapes

30 Aug

This post revolves around an Aesop’s fable called The Fox and the Grapes. Have you heard it? Well, if not, it goes something like this:

A fox is taking a nice summer stroll when he gets very hungry and thirsty. Searching for food, he comes across a juicy-looking bunch of grapes hanging from a branch over his head. “Well, those will be just the thing,” says the fox happily, and he leaps up to grab hold of the grapes. He can’t reach them. He tries and tries, but those grapes keep hanging temptingly just out of his reach. “Oh, well,” the fox grumbles. “They’re probably sour anyway.”

The moral of the story is, of course, that grapes don’t make good snacks. No, seriously, it’s that if we can’t get something, we’ll try to comfort ourselves by saying that it wasn’t worth it anyway. Doing this is called “sour grapes” or “getting sour grapes.” We all get sour grapes sometimes. Admit it. I’ll share a couple sour grape tales, and you can, too.

Sour Grapes #1: Poptropica

This took place a year or so ago, when I was really into the online game Poptropica. I was playing often (maybe too often), and really enjoying myself. Then, one day, I logged on only to find that somehow, I’d lost more than half of my game. Maybe I had just forgotten to save before shutting down the computer, but at the time, I believed that it had been deleted by malicious hackers. I was distraught, but after a few hours, I said to myself, “Allegra, it’s okay. Poptropica is just babyish, no fun at all. You’ll be better off just working on your blog.” See the similarity?

Note: I’m now a happy Poptropican again, but I’ve learned to play in moderation and take more care with my game. 😉

Sour Grapes #2: The Plastic Wand

This tale took place last year around Christmastime, and is less sour grape-ish, but still deserves mention. Knowing I am quite the Potterhead, my parents got me a toy Harry Potter wand for a Christmas stocking stuffer. Not the fancy kind with the light-up tip, but a plastic one that came in four pieces that had to be screwed together; it came as part of a mini-kit.Too tempted by my geekdom and the lure of being childish again, I put it together immediately and waved it absent-mindedly as present opening continued. (No, it didn’t fire off a spell, unfortunately.) Apparently I was a bit too vigorous, because it soon snapped, not at the point where you screw the pieces together, but elsewhere.

R.I.P. Cheesy Harry Potter Wand

We tried glueing it back together, but that looked very cheesy and didn’t hold. I chided myself for carelessness and not just putting it on display like I had planned, but also thought, Well, these things are a dime a dozen, I’m sure. Who cares?, though I was overjoyed at first to receive it.

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Posted by on August 30, 2010 in Academia, Personal

 

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