A Pun That Needs Explanation


Mango but pawn in game of life

When I was working as a produce clerk while at the university, a friend of a co-worker asked me if we had any mongoes. I didn’t recognize what she was asking for, and my co-worker explained that she was from Puerto Rico and was asking about mangoes. Of course, it was a dive of a grocery store so it didn’t have mangoes, but I’ve pronounced it the Spanish way ever since.

Even though, apparently, the fruit is not native to Central and South America as I thought; it’s native to Asia. Well, I have a choice to make now that I have misinformed my family: I can correct my assertion to them and further illustrate the fallability of the father in this household, or I can let it lay and maybe let them discover at some future time that their father was comfortable making daft assertions that were untrue.

You know what I’m going to do already, don’t you?

This Christmas, I put a mango and a kiwi in each of my boys’ stockings, and I finally served them up, but the boys didn’t like them. I tried a couple of segments and found they tasted a little like mango but a whole more like pickled herring. I guess it’s hard to get tree-fresh mangoes in Springfield, Missouri, in December.

That’s right: I am changing the subject.