There are quite a few country stores here in New Hampshire. They pretty much have everything under the sun, including the most common New Hampshire staples, like jars of jalapeno pepper jam, a moose-shaped pancake maker, and no less than 68 different kinds of maple-flavored products. The most prominent display in the country store is almost always the penny candy. These days, penny candy is now up to a whopping two cents a piece, and I can’t help but think they’re taking a loss on some of this stuff. Seeing the penny candy brings back great memories of my childhood, but it also reminds me of just how awful this stuff really is.
Wax Bottles: Does anyone know what was actually in these? I mean, it must have been something made of pure sugar. Not “pure” in the “all-natural” sense, since it was probably just high-fructose corn syrup and food coloring. Also, how much wax did I accidentally swallow as a child by eating these things? I probably have enough for an entire candle lodged in my stomach, just waiting for a wick.
Candy Stix: Much like Pepsi, these were the lollipops of a new generation. Hey, you know how a lollipop has a stick? Well, let’s replace the entire stick with candy! Oh, everyone’s fingers will get sticky? Eh, whatever. These things were the biggest choking hazards in modern candy history. Walking and chewing gum? Fine. Walking and eating one of these things? That’s an accident waiting to happen. How were children entrusted with these things, and how are they still on the market? This thing could literally spear the back of a child’s throat. How this never actually happened is beyond my comprehension.
Rock Candy: Hey, I know! Let’s take something completely unedible, like, say, a rock… but name it after something sweet and edible that kids love! And you know how rocks have jagged, sharp edges? Let’s put those in the candy, too! Oh, this idea is gonna be HUGE!
Candy Cigarettes: I can’t help but think that somehow, these are partly responsible for hundreds of thousands of cases of lung cancer. I never actually had these, because I was always taught as a child that cigarettes were bad. These things are totally a gateway drug. Much like their nicotine-laced counterparts, I avoided these like the plague. Although judging by my childhood friends’ addictions to them, I would not have been surprised if candy cigarettes were also laced with nicotine.
I should be surprised that all of these products are still being sold, but given the “Live Free and Die” mentality of New Hampshire, I might as well join in the fun, stock up, and schedule a dentist appointment.