Culture General

Tinkin toe

In every country, city, town or household there is always something or someone that would be described as being simply odd.

In Jamaica, there is a certain tree that produces an unusually looking fruit call “tinkin toe”. One would ask what kind of name is that for a fruit? Well after taking a good sniff of this fruit “tinkin toe” (stinking toe) is the best name for it.

The smell (and the shape) of the fruit is very similar to the high stench of someone with very “smelly” or “cheesy” toes.

Strangely enough this fruit is popular and well loved among Jamaicans, especially those of us among the younger generation.

It looks like a very large overgrown pea in its shell (See picture above).

In Jamaica there are quite a few more odd-looking fruits, trees and vegetables, not to mention their names.

Among the fruits are pommegrenatte, paw paw, custard, star apple, sweet sop, sour sop, and of course the different types of mangoes. We have Julie, blackie (very common and very sweet), Bombay. The Bombay usually fall from the tree when it is ripe, but because this is such a big fruit falling from a tall tree it is normally soft when it hits the ground. In many cases it is better off being pureed. It is sometimes eaten with a spoon. There is also the East Indian mango (because it came when the Indians arrived in Jamaica, along with the Bombay). . This is also another very big mango. It is also very sweet and has the unusual shape of a paisley.

Then there are the vegetables, we have chocho, okras and the cucumber. These almost sound like little pet names for our significant others.

As a matter of fact some people do call their playmates or loved ones funny names like these. Of all the unusual looking, smelling or fruit names there are nothing beats the “tinkin toe”.

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