Ina dark, dark cupboard,
in a dark, dark kitchen,
a fierce battle was brewing.
The jam jars were once again squabbling over cupboard positions.
“I’m by far the most popular, so I should sit at the front”, smirked Strawberry, smoothing down her label.
Blackberry’s lid popped wtih anger and his jar steamed wtih rage as he growled, “Let’s see how popular you’ll be with cracks all over your face”.
Damson whispered to Plum, “think we should stop him”?
“Don’t worry, he’s all sugar and no fruit”, sniggered Plum.
Goosberry Preserve chose this moment to step forward. “Well I think it’s obvious who should be first on show when the cupboard opens. Style dears, it’s all about style”, she said fluffing up her fancy sliver and gold neck decoration.
“Anyone who looks like snot should be hidden at the back”, quipped Blueberry.
“Well, er, actually, erm, I’m the most unusual”, spluttered Loganberry shyly, “so maybe erm, I should er be at the um front, maybe”. Her quiet, timid voice was drowned out by a Jam Jar hulabaloo. The Jams started shouting at the tops of their voices- “BIGGEST, CHEAPEST, FRUITIEST, SMOOTHEST, CHUNKIEST”. Every Jam Jar was the best and every Jam Jar demanded to sit at the front.
The noise was deafening.
“ENOUGH”! came a booming voice from the depths of the forgotten corner.
The Jam Jars were stunned into silence, as shuffling towards them came a crusty, dusty ageing Orange Marmalade. A Jam Jar corridor quickly appeared as Old Marmalade inched his way forward. Gooseberry practically passed out when he brushed his grubby jar against her lavish adornments.
“So, you all think you’re the best do you”? croaked Old Marmalade in a crusty, dusty unused voice.
“I suggest we find out just who is worthy of the pole position”.
Old Marmalade eased himself out of the cupboard and out of sight. The Jam Jars looked at each other in confusion as noises of banging, crashing, shuffling, muttering came from outside the cupboard. Finally a crackled voice shouted “Everybody out”!
The by now, silent Jam Jars all assembled on the kitchen top, whilst Old Marmalade paced up and down. “Here it is, the Ultimate test, The Jaminator. This will show just who is worthy of the top cupboard front spot” croaked Old Marmalade. The Jam Jars eyed the obstacle course with interest.
“On your marks, get set, go”! shouted Old Marmalade.
The Jars were off, down the spaghetti ropes, where Gooseberry got tangled up in her gold neck decorations and was left hanging in a very unsighlty way.
Onto the tinned fruit slalom, where Blackberry and Strawberry tried to get between peaches and pears at the same time, which left peaches dented and the 2 Jams stuck fast, both refusing to move.
Next it was the fridge climb.
Loganberry clambered to the top, eyes shut tight, afraid to look down, stepped on the butter dish, flipped over and became wedged between milk and orange juice.
With four Jams left, the race was very much stilll on. Neck and neck they approached the next test, the sink. Using sponges as stepping stones the Jams had to get from one end of the water filled bowl to the other without getting wet. Not a problem for raspberry, who was half empty and light on her feet. Blueberry and Damson wobbled a bit but crossed with ease. Plum, however, full of confidence, but also full of fruit, stepped on the sponge and sank straight to the bottom of the bowl.
The last 3 raced to the final event, walnut skating. “Woah”, yelled Damson as he cannoned into Blueberry, trying desperately to stay on his walnut.
“Look out” shouted Blueberry, as the two Jams, now locked together in tandem rolling, headed straight for slow, careful raspberry, inching his way forward to the line in a jerky motion. Too late, the Jams collided. Raspberry was thrown into the air, landing on top of Damson and Blueberry, who sped over the finish line, pyramid style.
The whole kitchen burst out laughing. Everyone agreed it was the most fun they’d ever had.
So, who won?
Well, there really was only one winner.
Old Marmalade, of course.
by Nathan Moore