Go to any shop and pick up a jar, a tin or an item of clothing. Look at the label. What does it tell you?
Labels on food products tell you what its ingredients and nutritional value are. Labels on clothes tell you its brand, where it was manufactured and how to care for that item of clothing.
Sometimes labels tell you what that particular item is…I remember as a child picking up a loose item of clothing at a shop and thinking it was one half of a pair of legwarmers (yes, this was wayyyyy back in the early 1980s). Then I found an identical item still in its packaging, the label of which told me it was actually a boob tube, you know, the stretchy lycra-type thingy that women wear around their torsos instead of a blouse or shirt. Perhaps better known as a “bandeau”. Well, silly me! In my defence, I was only 10 or 11 then, and still boobless, so how could I have known? 😄
You know marmalade is made from oranges. But you also know it may have varying amounts of sweeteners in it. It could have lemons or lime added to it. Or ginger. It could be a “Lite” or reduced sugar or diabetic marmalade. If all marmalade were exactly the same, there would be no need for branding or labels.
But not all marmalade’s the same. And not all labels or brands are the same. Prices range from “penny pincher” to “supermarket savvy” to “luxury item”. Even the packaging is as varied as the types of marmalade you can buy. Some marmalade look darker than others. Even their consistencies can vary, from wibbly wobbly jelly welly, to so firm you could hold the jar upside down and it wouldn’t fall out. Some marmalade have bits of peel suspended in them. There are even variations in the orange peel – from bits to shreds to chunks. Even the shredded peel have variations within themselves, from straight cut to curly or spirals. I’ve even come across marmalade with flakes of gold in it…only for the super-rich, of course, just because they can.
My point is, marmalade can be a metaphor for human beings. We are a different and unique. We all have our little quirks. What Life throws at us, and what sticks, is what makes us who we are. Even identical twins cannot be completely identical clones of each other. Every single second that we’re here changes us from a microscopic level, with knock-on effects on a macroscopic level.
Like right now, as I lie on my bed typing this post on my Samsung Galaxy Note 4. My bum is slowly going to sleep, and I know if I don’t get up and walk about soon, I’ll have pins and needles in my tush. No worries, though, as right now my dogs, Scruffy and Shelagh, have decided that they want to go out, and Scruffy is licking my toes while Shelagh is trying to get her muzzle between my face and the Note 4’s touchscreen.
I’d better post this now, then go see what I can have for breakfast. I hope there’s still some marmalade left.