The Torment of the Tomatoes: The Crisis Beleaguering Ohio

Nikhil Ravilla, Staff Writer

When I was but a wee child, unaware of the ways and customs of this foreign land known as Ohio, I was left wanting to ingratiate myself with the culture of this mystical and intriguing domain. Most other children, being of rather ordinary and reasonable countenances, would have acquainted themselves with the locals; I, on the other hand, being an admittedly somewhat cantankerous fellow, beset myself upon my new school’s library, and stumbled across a book: Ohio, emblazoned across that hard and shiny cover. ‘Twas the day that I was to learn a most distressing fact: that the official state drink of this place was…tomato juice?!?!??!??!

A stock image (seriously, why is there one for every scenario imaginable, dear lord) of a woman gleefully gulping down her state-mandated glass of tomato juice like the detestable sheep she is.

This fact resonated with me so profoundly that I promptly forgot about it several seconds later. Alas, fate is undoubtedly a fickle being, and as such, it was merely by the hand of destiny that I was to write this following manifesto, a paragraph-long proclamation decrying the unjust horror of the fruit (or vegetable, depending on who you ask) that has long tortured our state through its incessant presence: “How can one proudly claim to be a resident of a state that has already been relegated to the status of national laughingstock when our state drink is as repugnant, detestable, and loathsome as tomato juice? It is the quandary that millions of us Ohioans have been forced to reckon with, except for the fact that no one knows that our state drink is tomato juice when we really all ought to be protesting in the streets, à la France. Anyway, we must revolt against this tyranny, this torment of the tomatoes; it starts today. A movement has been born, and I shan’t rest till all that is left of this tomatonopoly* are the crumbling remains of what once was our prison. Today is the first day we will become free, become liberated from the tomatoes. It will be hard, and yet my soul is filled with nothing but the sense that the sun shall set upon an Ohio freed from the tomatoes.”


Of course, I couldn’t hold onto such a masterpiece to myself, and I was filled with the conviction to spread this message to the world (of the, like, maybe five friends I have ;-;). 


Many were supportive. “ I just saw this and wholeheartedly agree!” said Lia Papachristou, a Freshman at Liberty.


Some even expressed their own dismay at this dastardly detail. “First the chemical spill, a disaster, and now tomatoes 😥!” said Eve Estep, a Sophomore, as she recalled the horror of her realization.


Others were ecstatic to share their consternation at this calamity, such as Emma Rubenow, a Senior and loyal comrade to my great and glorious counter-revolution. “We have been subjected to years worth of misplaced emotions. I must exclaim this situation has put residents in a quandary due to their unrequited love for tomato juice!” she said. “It’s a tomato coup d’état!”

An old (ew) man (double ew) gazes contemplatively at a glass of tomato juice that he holds in his hand, wondering whether he should drink it or not (DON’T DO IT GERALD, RUN WHILE YOU STILL CAN).

Naturally, not everyone was enthusiastic about my movement. “Did you write this? 💀,” Avery Pohlman, a Junior, asked, as if to derisively mock me for my obnoxious and unsolicited rant about an innocent fruit (or vegetable, you get it). “Why though?” she later asked. I simply answered with two words: tomato juice.


If you’d like to support my stand against the tomatoes, do not hesitate to contact me IMMEDIATELY. Any help is greatly appreciated. DEATH TO THE TOMATOES!!!


*If you couldn’t tell, this was meant to be a portmanteau of the words tomato and monopoly. I try, okay?  🤡 🤡 🤡