The dreaded pineapple threat

I generally ignore Trump news anymore — I’m waiting for the indictments, arrest, and trial, which will probably never happen — but sometimes he’s so ridiculous I can’t pretend he doesn’t exist. So, the latest: in a deposition last year, he revealed his fear of fruit.

Former president Donald Trump said he feared protesters would hit him with tomatoes, pineapples and other “very dangerous” fruit at his campaign rallies, declaring in a sworn deposition that “you can be killed if that happens.”

It gave me flashbacks.

Let’s be realistic, though. He wasn’t really afraid of fruit. He was inflating the dangers of fruit so he could justify using violence against people who oppose him.

Dictor then asked Trump: “Is it your expectation that if your security guards see someone about to throw a tomato that they should knock the crap out of them?”

Trump replied in the affirmative, noting that he expected his security team to use physical force in such cases.

“Yeah, I think that they have to be aggressive in stopping that from happening,” Trump said. “Because if that happens, you can be killed if that happens. … To stop somebody from throwing pineapples, tomatoes, bananas, stuff like that, yeah, it’s dangerous stuff.”

Has anyone ever thrown pineapples at a protest?


  1. Matt G says

    I’ve thrown dirty looks and perhaps a few epithets, but that’s about it. I once threw an egg at the house of a paper route customer on Halloween. He deserved it, but I’m still not proud of myself.

  2. submoron says

    Terry Pratchett, from The Last Continent I think
    “Probably went swimming and got eaten by a pineapple.”

  3. Snarki, child of Loki says

    Should have thrown more rotten peaches at Trump.

    If anyone earned impeachment on a daily basis, it was Trump.

  4. Reginald Selkirk says

    Has anyone ever thrown pineapples at a protest?

    Wasn’t Noriega supposedly hit in the face with one?

  5. StevoR says

    Vaguely recall that there was a ridiculous reichwing thing about tins of something – maaaaybe pineapple – being weaponised years ago?

  6. says

    To be fair, you probably shouldn’t throw shit at presidents & ex-presidents. Or expect anything good to happen if you do. That flying tackle from behind will fold you up like a lawn chair.
    Younger me could have done some damage with a pineapple, though; I played some third base and rightfield, and you gotta have an arm to play those positions.
    So in 15 years we’ve gone from George W. Bush nimbly dodging a pair of shoes thrown at him to Donald Trump and “please don’t throw fruit at me, I could be killed.”

  7. wonderpants says

    Is PZ scoffing at fruit being used as a weapon?! Sharpened mangoes can be quite dangerous, as a Mr E Blackadder (Captain) can tell you.

  8. StevoR says

    In fairness, I’m pretty sure I recall reading somewhere that pineapples have some sort of powerful natural substance that means when you eat them they are eating you back – hence the tingling feeling in one’s mouth..

  9. blf says

    I know I’ve told this story before here at FTB, possibly here at poopyhead’s blog, so apologies if it sounds familiar… My father, for a time, was the plant(? site?) engineer at a styrofoam factory, where the incoming raw ingredients were processed to produce styrofoam and then pressed into the end product, e.g., at the time, meat trays, egg cartons, disposable plates and serving trays, etc. — not at all an ecologically-sound or sustainable industry (indeed, all of those listed products have now been superseded by, e.g., cardboard equivalents), but fairly common at the time.

    Anyways, to test the (chemical) reactors, extruders, and presses, a “test product” was needed. Someone decided-on / designed a carton of Rotten Eggs, (paraphrasing) Guaranteed Good for Pelting Politicians, Fragrant Odors, To Throw Not Consume, etc., etc. I used to have one such carton (empty (not that any were ever filled (as far as I know))), but it vanished many yonks ago. From (possibly incorrect) memory, the base colour was a slightly off-putting “pink”, and there was a cartoon-ish coloured graphic of a tricky dicky-like cartoon figure, discoloured as it either had been hit by such an egg, vomiting, or perhaps both.

  10. hemidactylus says

    @6- feralboy12

    Say what you want about W and there’s plenty negative to be said, nevertheless his response to the thrown shoe was very impressive. He may have been a dull wit, but he was quite fit with all that running and brush clearing at the ranch. Apparently had reflexes like a cat.

  11. antigone10 says

    He’s afraid of being humiliated, not killed. He doesn’t want people to through rotten fruit and produce because it’ll be memed and replayed. He’s like all bullies- afraid of being laughed at, and willing to use overwhelming force to avoid it.

  12. Reginald Selkirk says

    @8 @12 Bromelain is a protease, so you could say biochemical. This is why you can’t use fresh uncooked pineapple in gelatin, it will dissolve the protein crosslinks that set up the colloid. Also, supposedly long exposure to it will remove your fingerprints. This shows up occasionally in spy or detective novels.
    The Science Behind Why Pineapple Ruins Gelatin

  13. birgerjohansson says

    I like the idea of launching pineapples with some kind of pressurized air gun. Or even better, launching lutefisk. Go, Minnesota!

  14. birgerjohansson says

    Well-known fact: during christmas, Swedes drive around with trucks launching high-velocity lutefisk through the windows of neighbors they don’t like.
    (voice from Family Guy: “My God, my child is dead!” Peter Griffin: (tries to avoid blame)
    Also, don’t forget the Scottish fish-slap dance.

  15. birgerjohansson says

    “Attack of the Killer Tomatos” from the 1970s is old hat. Watch out for the Pineapples of Fukushima!

  16. weylguy says

    The prop comedian Gallagher used to throw all manner of fruit at his audience, using the insidious Sledge-O-Matic.

  17. HidariMak says

    SteveR @ #5:
    “Vaguely recall that there was a ridiculous reichwing thing about tins of something – maaaaybe pineapple – being weaponised years ago?”
    The president-reject claimed during the BLM protests that Antifa were burying boxed of canned tuna, going so far as to specify it was Bumble Bee tuna, so that protestors could dig up the tuna tins to pelt at their victims. A week or two later, he made similar claims about canned soup.

  18. StevoR says

    @Reginald Selkirk : Manuel Noriega wasn’t hit by a pineapple as far as I can find (though my googfle-fu may have failed me) but it seems he was accused of looking like a rotten one! :

    Noriega used the moniker “El Man” to refer to himself, but he was also derogatorily known as cara de piña, or “pineapple face” in Spanish, as a result of pockmarked features left by an illness in his youth.[206][207] He detested the name, and it would later be the subject of a lawsuit.

    Source :

  19. HidariMak says

    birgerjohansson @ #15:
    “I like the idea of launching pineapples with some kind of pressurized air gun.”
    A chicken gun, also known as a chicken cannon, tests aircraft components by firing chicken carcasses at them. A pineapple by itself would be difficult enough to sneak past security though.

  20. StevoR says

    @23. HidariMak : Yes! That’s what I was thinking of. Cheers (Thanks) for that. Also didn’t know that and thanks as well #14 Reginald Selkirk.

    @ antigone10 : Truth. Yet Trump (& so many of his bullying deliberately igncurious, willfully ignorant ilk) humilates himself almost every day – even if he (& they) don’t seem to realise it.

    @ 22. weylguy : Sledge-O-Matic? What’s the botanical species name for that one?

  21. StevoR says

    Or one of those cocktail drink things with straws in them shaped as pineapples / actual pineapples?

  22. blf says

    The mildly deranged penguin has never (or so she now claims) launched a pineapple with any of her trebuchets, but is now intrigued with the idea. Preliminary studies, however, indicate a ballistic pineapple reentering the atmosphere in the vicinity of, say, Kremlin-a-Lago, would burn up, leaving at most the smell of a roasted pineapple pizza (no anchovies).

  23. acroyear says

    Heh – I saw a reference to that on Late Night with Seth Meyers last night (on youtube, not at broadcast time) and immediately had to pause as my brain went “Hey Monty Python did that”. So here we are. :)

  24. blf says

    @31, And germs (hair furor is a self-admitted germophobe (this is widely not thought to be a lie)). Also coughs (allegedly). Coughing Sharkfruitgermos Invade from Mexifrica! (“If you manage to avoid their germs and bites, the bananas will get you”).

  25. birgerjohansson says

    So we dip pineapples in shark germs, and launch them into Mar-a-lago with a trebuchet?

  26. Akira MacKenzie says

    Maybe Trump caught the beginning of the Adam Sandler errrr… “comedy” Little Nicky where Satan shoves a pineapple up the ass of Hitler’s damned soul?

  27. vucodlak says

    I remember from reading the book Too Much and Never Enough by Dr. Mary L. Trump (a.k.a. the good Trump) about disgraceful ex-president Trump that Trump’s older brother once dumped a bowl of mashed potatoes on his head when he was being particularly shitty as a child. She said he’s still furious about it some 60 years later, and I have no trouble believing her. I’d be willing to bet that petty humiliation was in the back of his mind when he told his stormtroopers to assault protestors who might be armed with squishy vegetation.

  28. blf says

    Unfortunately, I’ve not been able to copy the text itself to excerpt or quote, but The Pineapple Throwing Monkey of Bougainville.

    This is apparently an entry in from Julian Worker’s Animals Evolution Avoided: From Gannets to Squids (2016(?)):

    A humorous book about animals that ought to exist, but never quite made it due to circumstances beyond their control. In this book, you will find the Green Fox, the Straight Snake of Assam, and the Garlic Rat of Alabama. Read about the penguin that provides a back-scratching service to other penguins, the skua that only builds vertical nests, and the snake that hangs from trees pretending to be a vine.

  29. unclefrogy says

    he simply does not care what he says in an ordinary sense. He must drive his lawyers nuts why they do not like him testifying vary much. he really is outside of normal.
    a pineapple is also another name for a fragmentation grenade

  30. birgerjohansson says

    Bernie Sanders is live on Youtube now, comparing Norway to USA!
    Much recommended!

  31. llyris says

    I was under the impression that the only really deadly projectile fruit was the bunya from Australia.

  32. snarkrates says

    Regarding Darth Cheeto, I am reminded of South Park, The Movie and just want to say green end first!

    As to potentially lethal fruits, a jackfruit dropping from a 30-foot tree sounds like a good candidate. Or a durian hurled with sufficient velocity. Plus, the latter will stink up the joint. The jackfruit will just smell like Juicyfruit gum.

  33. PaulBC says

    snarkrates@45 Jackfruits always make me think of something a giant would swing on the end of a stick like a morningstar.

  34. Rich Woods says

    Has anyone ever thrown pineapples at a protest?

    I’ve thrown snowballs at a protest. The National Front were protesting against the arrest of some of their members for breach of the peace at a fight they’d instigated the previous day. We were overjoyed that they hadn’t thought to check the weather forecast first. Even the cops didn’t like it when a bunch of skinheads started hammering on the station door, so they came out and arrested a few more of them. There was a photo I cut out from the local paper showing the NF sandwiched between a dozen cops and a hail of snowballs; I wish I could find it now.

  35. StevoR says

    @44. llyris : “I was under the impression that the only really deadly projectile fruit was the bunya from Australia.”

    That’s certainly one of them – Auracaria bidwillii :

    has massive heavy cones which Indigenous people feast on (various families each having one tree they look after and collect from memoryserving) but which can be deadly if they fall on you. There are some locally in Belair NP which get fenced off to a safe distance when they fruit are “ripe” and starting to fall.

    This page has some good info on that if you scroll down including pics of the trees and fruit :

    From December to March, bunya pines drop cones containing edible seeds known as bunya ‘nuts’. Heavy crops normally occur about every three years. For countless generations, large groups of Aboriginal people gathered at the Bunya Mountains to take part in what today are known as the bunya festivals, coinciding with this natural event.

    Aboriginal people of the Bunya Mountains and Blackall Ranges (nearer the coast) invited people from as far south as the Clarence River in northern New South Wales, west to the Maranoa River and east to Wide Bay to join the gatherings. For local and visiting groups, the bunya festivals were times for ceremonies, law-making and resolving disputes, renewing friendships, passing on lore, sharing ideas and revitalizing spirituality.

    The soft, juicy, young nuts were eaten raw while the mature nuts were roasted. After cracking the outer shells of mature nuts on an open fire, kernels were pounded into meal and roasted into a kind of cake that could be stored for several weeks. Rich nutty meals were the main food. Hunting of wildlife was strictly controlled during the gatherings which could last for several months.

    Expansion of European settlements, along with increased logging activity and clearing for grazing and farming, disrupted the large gatherings, making it difficult for visiting Aboriginal groups to travel along their traditional pathways. Aboriginal people left or were removed from their country. The last great festival was held in the late 1800s, but the connections still run deep. Local Aboriginal people and even groups that didn’t attend festivals still have ties with the Bunyas through trading, family, songs and stories.

    I gather coconuts also cause fatalities when falling on people.too. See among other palces :

  36. derferick says

    To market, to market with my brother Jim.
    Somebody threw a tomato at him.
    Tomatoes are fine when they’re in the skin,
    But this one was in a bloody great tin.

  37. submoron says

    derferick @ 50, James Thurber did something similar in 1942. Here lies miss Groby.
    ‘If a woman were to grab a bottle of Grade A and say to her husband, “Get away from me, or I’ll hit you with the milk”, that would be a Thing Contained for the Container.”‘ and
    “In later years I came across another excellent example of this figure of speech in a joke long since familiar to people who know vaudeville or burlesque (or radio, for that matter). It goes something like this:
    A: What’s your head all bandaged up for?
    B: I got hit with some tomatoes.
    A: How could that bruise you up so bad?
    B: These tomatoes were in a can.”