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Diane Mack: Watermelon: The perfect summer food

Staff Writer
The Examiner
Camera:   EOSDCS1B        Serial #: K600-A336Width:    3060Height:   2036Date:  7/18/02Time:   12:52:31DCS4XX ImageFW Ver:   051998          TIFF ImageLook:   Portrait----------------------Counter:    [ 7]ISO:        80  Aperture:   F6.7Shutter:    60  Exposure:   M   Exp Comp:    0.0Meter area: SpotFlash sync: NoneFlash comp:  0.0Drive mode: SingFocus mode: One Lens (mm):  0080

This is the season for one of my favorite foods.

No, it is not tacos or cheese enchiladas. I can eat them all year.

You would find this item in the produce department, where you have permission to thump it. This fruit should sound hollow, when you thump.

If it is ripe, it should have somewhat of a yellow spot on its underbelly.

You guessed it. This favorite food is watermelon.

In fact, I would say meal. I can make a meal out of watermelon.

Watermelon reminds me of my grandpa’s farm. My mom and dad would take us to Grandpa’s farm at least twice a week.

When it was a special occasion, Grandpa would step outside the back door and lift the cement cover to a spring well. We knew what was coming when he’d draw up the rope.

Attached to the end of the rope was a watermelon wrapped in a burlap bag. It was cold and what a treat!

It was then and it still is now.

I hear that watermelon is 92% water.

According to watermelon.org, watermelon can lower your blood pressure. Watermelon also has more lycopene than any other fresh fruit or vegetable.

Also, according to healthline.com, watermelon helps you hydrate, contains compounds which may help prevent cancer, may improve your heart health, and may lower inflammation and oxidative stress.

Just one cup of watermelon has 20 percent of your daily requirement for vitamin C, 18 percent of vitamin A, iron, calcium, potassium, thiamin, niacin and vitamin B6.

Even if it wasn’t nutritious, I’d eat it anyway. Watermelon is delicious.

When I was young, many summers were spent at family get-togethers and church picnics. Of course, someone always brought a watermelon.

I would get so excited when those serving the food would crack open a watermelon. In fact, I can hear the song “Grazing in the Grass,” just thinking about that slice of watermelon.

Forget the pies, cookies, and cakes and give me a slice of America.

Yes, with July Fourth coming up, save me a slice of America.

When I was younger and I asked my mom how a baby got into a mommy’s belly, she would say, “She swallowed a watermelon seed!”

Mark Molloy put together a large collection of watermelon jokes, too. May I share a few?

When do you go at red and stop at green? When you’re eating a watermelon.

Why do watermelons have fancy weddings? Because they cantaloupe.

What kind of summer camp would a toilet, a mountain lion, and a watermelon all go to? A John Cougar Melon Camp

What do you call fruit that commits egregious crimes? A water-felon.

Why did the watermelon go crazy? He lost his rind.

Why are watermelons such good gossips? They have all the juice.

Well, I believe I have belabored the topic of watermelons. I will conclude.

Hurry, run fast to the store,

To buy your watermelon supply,

Cause there ain’t nothin’ better,

For the Fourth of July!

– Diane Mack is coordinator of Putting Families First, Jackson County's Family Week Foundation. Email her at Director@jacksoncountyfamilyweek.org.