We’ve all heard that accidents are most likely occur at home, specifically in the bathroom or kitchen. But one thing you never hear about are the statistics for how many people are severely injured while trying to cut an avocado in the kitchen. Well, it happens, as hard as it might be to believe. And when it does, it’s putting people in the hospital.
The New York Times recently released a story titled “How to Cut an Avocado Without Cutting Yourself.”
Because apparently the avocado injury epidemic is bigger than we realized.
The New York Times article declares the avocado “one of the most dangerous foods to cut.” A single doctor can see upwards of a dozen avocado-cutting-related injuries a year. Staggering! The article’s author even knows someone who was handed a hospital bill of “around $20,000” for injuries sustained while cutting an avocado.
The article also explains that many injuries come from improper handling of the knife while removing the pit, or when a person cuts the avocado while holding it. In an attempt to keep the avocado injury epidemic in check, the New York Times even provided a short video for proper avocado cutting.
But the real issue is that if you’re cutting something, always exercise caution.
EMPIRE STRIKES BACK / Lucas Film LTD
No matter what you are cutting, whether it’s an avocado or an apprentice Jedi.
So much of this year has been spent inside our apartments singing and dancing to Bad Bunny hits like “Safaera” and “Yo Perreo Sola” or looking through countless magazines that made him their cover boy.
It seems that 2020 is peak Bad Bunny, as the reggaetónero takes over the world bringing us hit after hit while bringing perreo into the mainstream.
Now, in his latest cover story in The Culture Issue of the New York Times, San Benito gives us insight into what his 2020 has been like, what we can expect from him in the not so distant future and what being a Puerto Rican super star means to him.
Bad Bunny is taking over the world and his latest interview with the New York Times details just how he plans to do it.
‘The World According to Bad Bunny’ – that is what graces the cover of the New York Times’ latest Culture Issue. And it catches your eye – his full face, including his now signature mustache – force you to do a double take to soak in all of his glory. Or maybe that was just my reaction…
Benito Antonio Martínez Ocasio — more popularly known as Bad Bunny, San Benito, El Conejo Malo — is the reggaetónero we’ve all fallen in love with and who is topping charts throughout the world.
His latest feature story covers everything from his love for Puerto Rico to his next album, but it’s also another major step for the artist in putting both is home and the Latino community on the world stage.
His profile begins with Bad Bunny discussing his album YHLQMDLG, which begins with the song “Si Veo a Tu Mamá”, which has a verse we can all relate to in 2020: “maldito Año Nuevo” (or “this damn new year”). But despite all the BS that 2020 has thrown our way, Bad Bunny has managed to shine through by being an advocate when it comes to so many issues.
Bad Bunny says he feels like an “athlete representing his Puerto Rico at the Olympics.“
San Benito has made it his mission to put his homeland on the map and to showcase to the world the problems that Boricuas face on the island. In the interview, Bad Bunny describes himself as an athlete representing Puerto Rico in the Olympics.
Those problems he speaks of include the island’s status as a commonwealth territory of the U.S. which means its citizens on the island cannot vote for president or have any voting representatives in Congress.
The natural disasters of Hurricane Maria, Irma and the earthquakes that rung in 2020 also add to the laundry list of problems, and also came with little financial help from Trump’s federal government, which has left Puerto Rico in a vulnerable state to this day.
In language, Caribbean Spanish like that of Puerto Rico is heavily criticized by the so-called sophisticated Latin Americans, but they all bop their heads to Bad Bunny tunes like “Safaera,” “La Romana,” and more.
So many of us love Bad Bunny for his constant activism and he doesn’t disappoint in this NYT piece.
Bad Bunny is known for breaking cultural stereotypes, shattering boundaries others couldn’t dream of, and advocating for women. He’s even openly talked about depression, and shown the world it is okay not to feel okay.
His activism has also shown support for the trans community with the video “Yo Perreo Sola,” dressed in drag, or when he’s done public appearances wearing a skirt and a shirt that read “mataron a alexa, no a un hombre en falda.”
However, in the wake of George Floyd’s murder, Benito was suspiciously mute — no posts on social media, no interviews. He seemed to have disappeared at a moment that so many of us could of benefited from his compassion. Many criticized the singer for his silence.
But on June 12, a TIME article was published about him speaking out, through email exchanges, and how he did not want to just send a basic message, but rather go deeper to “support the fight against a systematic monster that’s been [around for] centuries.”
Bad Bunny also speaks out about reggaetón’s black roots – which so often go unmentioned.
As for inspirations, Benito called out the prominent Black stars who helped shape reggaetón into the phenomenon that is it today. He admits that’s something he’s still learning about. “As a child, for better or worse, I always lived in my bubble,” Benito says. “Now, I could say – and people do say – it’s a form of privilege. But it’s always been my way of being. Me, in my house and in my bubble, imagining a better, more magical world.”
As he ascends into the pop mainstream, Bad Bunny also opens up about returning reggaetón to its Puerto Rican roots on his album YHLQMDLG. “Since reggaetón went pop all over the world, I don’t feel like people really know the sound that raised me, that I grew up studying,” he says. “This is the album I would’ve wanted to release when I was 15 and dreamed of being a singer.” Benito also hints to the next project, adding, “My next album doesn’t have anything to do with YHLQMDLG.”
It’s a long interview but, come on, it’s with Bad Bunny so the entire interview is worth the read. You can check out the NYT piece here.
So yes, there have been multiple reports of people injuring their hands while trying to cut and remove the pits of avocados. But this should not keep us away from one of the Latin American fruits par excellence. The avocado tree probably has its origin in South Central Mexico. In strict terms, the avocado is a berry with a very large pit in the middle.
Avocado is one of the great gifts of the Americas to the world, as commercial production has expanded all throughout the world. The tree benefits from war, Mediterranean climates and thrives in semiarid landscapes. In Australia, for example, avocado, locally known as simply “avo” is perhaps the most popular fruit. Avo on toast is a staple in cafes and homes all through the country.
However, the expansion of avocado has also brought some minor tragedies with it due to the lack of experience that some home cooks have in the arts of fruit chopping.
Yes, we are actually not kidding: avocado slicing has spilled more blood than a serial killer in a slasher film!
A nicely sliced avocado has got to be one of the most beautiful sights on planet Earth! We understand why people want to get it just right.
Seriously. This fleshy fruit gives us beautiful hues of green when opened and its firm meat allows us to shape in in all kinds of interesting ways. Close your eyed and imagine a bowl of perfect avocado cubes… you will smell a fresh tortilla heating on the comal. Taquito de aguacate, anyone?
So first things first: the infamous “Avocado Hand.”
This seems to be a sort of accidental outbreak of lack of common sense among gringos worldwide (and by gringos we also mean British, Canadian, Australian and European folk). According to Food & Wine, “approximately 8,900 emergency room visits in 2018 could be directly tied to avocados”. That is like a small town of people running around the kitchen like headless chickens holding a paper towel to their hands and screaming “Oh-My-God” while shedding a tear.
And no, it is not an urban legend, Avocado Hand actually exists.
So contrary to, say, apples, avocados have a soft skin and soft flesh. And contrary to, say, watermelon, they do not have a hard bit to get through. Some people underestimate how easily the knife will cut through the flesh and end up putting too much pressure on the knife while keeping their palms or fingers directly opposite. The result: blades penetrate through human flesh, savaging skin and painting a symphony of crimson pain. But avocado is soft and cuts easily, and everyone should know that. In Mexico, the government once financed a campaign to promote avocado consumption, and called the fruit “the butter of vegetables”.
Some people are just displaying their injuries like war wounds to be proud of
In this day and age of selfies and a sometimes unhealthy obsession with self-branding, some are actually publishing photos of their avocado hands as if they were a badge of honor. Seriously, ladies and dudes, no one wants to see those stitches and gooey stuff coming out of your fingers, especially not on a closeup. Please just don’t!
And even get tattoos to celebrate the accident.
Well, we actually have to admit this one is pretty funny and kinda cool. We love the minimalist outline and the dramatic nature of this skin art piece. It is Shakespearean and hipster in equal measures.
So avocado hand pins are a thing, apparently.
Do you know how Boy and Girl Scouts wear all sorts of badges on their uniforms to celebrate their achievements? Well, if you had an avocado hand incident and for some reason, you are proud of it, you can wear this pin. Alternatively, you could also wear it as a reminder of your encounter with the cuchillo, so you remember to be very careful when cutting and pitting a delicious avocado.
Use a spoon, people.
So here’s the deal. Using a knife to take the seed out might look cool, but it is not for everyone. Do it safely and please use a spoon and just scoop the seed out. You might lose some of the flesh, but that’s OK (better than losing a finger).
This technique is for expert knife-handlers only, so don’t attempt at home. Frankly, this is a show off technique for mamones.
Seriously, this technique is a bit silly even for experienced cooks.
If you are feeling creative, pixelate your avocado.
One of the newest hipster trends in the cafe industry is to serve pixelated avocados, which basically look like this. Just use an extremely thin and sharp knife, place the avocado on board, get your fingers away from the bottom of the fruit and cut it in cubes, little by little, stopping just before you hit the skin. The results are fun and give us una onda de los ochentas.
And some people take their carving obsession to the extreme: introducing avocado art.
Just wow. This is already an Instagram trend and features some pretty dedicated avocado lovers. The fruit gets all-black quickly after being cut open when exposed to room temperature, so the most experiences avocado carvers perfect their skills in walk-in fridges. Yes, it is pretty, but with all due respect, it is also a little pointless.
But if you think you just can’t slice an avocado without injuring yourself, you can get one of these contraptions.
If you have to trust or faith in your abilities, you can buy one of these plastic utensils that cut, slice and pit avocados in a safe, child-friendly way. No blades or pointy ends to be scared of! No one if judging if you get one! This is actually a good tool to get the chamaquitos to help in the kitchen. Guacamole para todos!
But always remember avocados are not to blame.
As they say, don’t shoot the messenger. The humble avocado is just the conduit through which an entire generation of foodies has come to the realization that they suck at handling knives. We also have to be aware of the fact that thousands of farmers and workers depend on avocado crops. In the state of Michoacan, in central Mexico, many families survive working in big avocado plantations. This state has been ravaged by cartel-related violence and the avocado industry is one of the few stable sectors in the industry. So think twice before affecting the industry.
By the way, the word avocado comes from aguacate, which comes from an indigenous word that means testicles… you are welcome.
Yes, the English word avocado comes from the Spanish aguacate, which in turn comes from the Nahuatl word āhuacatl. This word, you guessed it, means “testicle”. This is probably due to the likeness of the fruit and the male body part. We dare you to eat your next avocado and not think about this. Smashed avocado, compadres? Ouch!