44° 33' N     72° 34' W

cored\ kôrd\ (adjective); having had the basic or most important part removed; existing without the crucial element or essence.

you ask me to go bobbing for apples.

pick your favourite, you say.

i surface, eyelashes wet, with one that is neither rosy nor shiny, as you would have liked it to be. but it is my favourite, and, palm outstretched, i offer it to you- take it or leave it.

you take it. you cut out its core and you slice it up thinly and you boil it in cornstarch and water and when it is soft and cool you will serve it up.

this way, you explain gently, nobody ends up with pips stuck in their teeth.