Everything you need to know about the trending orange peel theory

No, it has nothing to do with oranges.

Harper's Bazaar India

Oranges and clementines have long been symbols of love in poetry and literature. In fact, Canadian writer, Jean Little captured the sentiment of peeling an orange in her poem, ‘Oranges’

“I peel oranges neatly. The sections come apart cleanly, perfectly in my hands. When Emily peels an orange, she tears holes in it. Juice squirts in all directions. ‘Kate,’ she says, ‘I don’t know how you do it!’ Emily is my best friend. I hope she never learns how to peel oranges.”

But what is it about the simple act of peeling an orange that has the Internet testing their partners' love for them? Read on to know more.


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What is the 'orange peel theory'?

The theory is quite straightforward. Picture yourself at the kitchen table, eyeing an orange with a mix of desire and reluctance. Almost impulsively, you ask your partner to peel it for you. Their response, whether a simple Of course, love” or a playful Why don't you do it yourself?” reveals the essence of the 'orange peel theory'. Put simply, this viral trend isn't about the fruit itself but rather a person's willingness to go the extra mile for a loved one, even in the most mundane tasks. The 'orange peel theory' falls under acts of service among the five love languages, reminding us that love isn't always about grand gestures but rather the quiet moments in your everyday life.

I’ve never given my boyfriend the chance to peel a fruit for me because we usually opt for takeout. However, reflecting on my family dynamics, I realise that we embody this theory in many ways. Growing up, my mother would peel almonds for everyone in the morning after soaking them overnight. My father would peel bananas for my sister and me while we sat in the living room. When my sister wanted to make a pistachio cake, we would gather to peel pistachio shells. These tasks were almost instinctual at home. Peeling almonds was never a burden for my mother and no one ever complained about peeling the pistachio shells either. I realised that I couldn't immediately connect these small gestures to expressions of love until I dug deeper. And as I compared their significance with the 'orange peel theory', I began to see that these acts had love and care tucked in them. 

The orange peel theory extends beyond romantic relationships, encompassing friendships, familial bonds, and maybe even professional connections. In a world where grand gestures often steal the spotlight, it's easy to overlook the significance of these small, everyday acts of love. But these moments matter. They are the building blocks of strong relationships, the glue that holds us together in the face of life's challenges.

So, the next time I encounter an orange on the kitchen table, I won't hesitate to outsource my peeling duties to my unsuspecting boyfriend. And who knows, maybe I'll even convince him that peeling oranges is the latest relationship trend sweeping the internet. After all, in love and citrus, anything is possible!

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