Well, it’s finally happened. Our collective obsession with the avocado has gone too far. I said nothing when they prevented millennials from buying homes, when they wormed their way into our personal lives via marriage proposals, or even when they caused so many of us to brutally slice open our hands while attempting to access their creamy texture and heart-healthy goodness. (We see you, Andi Dorfman.) But now, they have done the unthinkable. They have driven people to steal.
According to the Times, the unquenchable hunger for avocados has caused people to compromise their morals by seeking to pass them off as carrots (carrots!) at self-service checkout lanes in order to pay less for the fruits. Not only is this a gross abuse of the self-service checkout system (not having to interact with other humans is a privilege we should fight for, people), but it’s also a reflection of the fact that avocado culture has clearly snowballed into something far beyond what anyone could have imagined. There’s a millennial morality crisis afoot, and it appears avocados may be at the root of it.
This avocado-carrot caper, which was apparently first identified by Emmeline Taylor, a criminology professor at the University of London, has so far been observed in both Australia and the UK. No word yet on whether it’s spread to the US, but given America’s well-documented penchant for both guacamole and grifting, it’s probably only a matter of time. It is, after all, what the New Yorker recently dubbed "grifter season", and what better way to honor iconic grifters like Anna Delvey then by scamming your local grocery out of a few accurately-priced avocados, right? WRONG. Stealing is wrong, remember?
Taylor tells the Times: “I was working with retailers to reduce shoplifting when one major supermarket discovered it had sold more carrots than it had ever had in stock … Unfortunately this wasn’t a sudden switch to healthy eating, it was an early sign of a new type of shoplifter.”
I’m not going to sit here and pretend I don’t understand why someone would steal an avocado, or try to pass it off as a carrot, or whatever. Avocados are expensive! They’re also delicious and versatile and a staple of many classic summertime dishes. But what I am saying is that I think we need to step back and examine what sacrifices we’re willing to make to keep the avocado on our toast. If you would steal for an avocado, would you kill for an avocado? Would you die for an avocado?
While avocados may never realistically reach those rock-bottom carrot prices, if what we all want is cheaper avocados, may I suggest petitioning the Trump administration to stop turning them away at the Mexican border? Or applying a 20% tariff to them? Okay, I’m not saying that if Americans start trying to pass avocados off as carrots that it’s Donald Trump’s fault, but I guess I’m also not not saying that.
Perhaps, instead of devising ways to make off with free or deeply discounted avocados, we should recognize that it’s time to move on from the avocado. There are other fruits and vegetables and fruits-masquerading-as-vegetables in the world! Why not the tomato? Why not a nice eggplant? Why not a freaking carrot?! No, I seriously mean it, stop pretending that avocado is a carrot and just eat a damn carrot! No, you can’t put them on toast, but you can dip them into things, some very delicious things, in fact. And while you are doing so, you can give yourself a nice, hearty pat on the back for resisting the siren song of the stolen avocado.