The cucumber is a long, slim straight vegetable generally eaten raw as a salad vegetable, but also pickled. There are different types of cucumber, for eating and pickling. Eating cucumbers may be ridged or smooth and are usually dark green with tapering ends and pale flesh, although some are lemon-coloured. In the United States eating cucumbers are usually shorter and fatter than European varieties. Pickling, or Kirby, cucumbers are smaller than eating varieties and have black or white spines. Samuel Johnson thought that a cucumber 'should be well sliced and dressed with pepper and vinegar, and then thrown out as good for nothing.' I think this is a little hard on the cucumber.