Kitchen Table Talk: I love candy

27 May

I was in the supermarket the other day, browsing through the cereal aisle, when I came upon Alpha Bits. I had not seen this cereal in years! After seeing the blue box, hiding its crunchy corn letters and marshmallow treats, I flashed back, LOST style, to approximately 1985. I remembered sitting in my parents’ kitchen, eating the cereal (which, for some reason, remains the only cereal from my childhood that I remember eating), waiting for the Snorks or the Smurfs to take their turn in the Saturday morning cartoon line-up.  It was such a vivid memory that for a brief moment, I actually felt like I was 8.

The Alpha Bits sighting got me thinking about all the other foods, specifically candies, that I was fortunate enough to have in my childhood. While I’m sure that these candies still exist, and probably existed before I was a kid (or even born), they will always and forever be symbols of growing up in the 80s:

Razzles Candy Assorted Flavors 1.4oz.Razzles–is it a candy? Is is a gum? What is it? I’m not really sure but they were freaking delicious! They were these little round pellets with one raised side. I can’t remember the flavors but they came in purple (my favorite), orange and red. One summer there was even a contest to find all the letters in one bag. Spell Razzles, win a prize! How awesome is that?

Bottle Caps Theatre Size 6oz.  Bottlecaps–these were my absolute favorite item to get from the ice cream man. Bottlecaps, which I recently learned are still being sold, looked like little soda caps and came in a package or in a roll. I liked the roll better than the package (more Bottlecaps). I would buy them, bring them in the house and sort them by flavor: grape, cherry, cola, orange and root beer. Then I would eat them in ascending order of likeness (orange went first, root beer last). Compulsive? Maybe. Delicious? Absolutely.

Fun Dip Candy Package Of 8Fun Dip–ah, what could be better to a kid than using a stick of sugar to eat flavored sugar? I prefered the 2 stick/3 flavor pack (lime, grape and cherry) to the 1 stick/1 flavor combo. My memory may be clouded by a sugar-haze, but I remember some version where you could mix the flavors into one ultimate Fun Dip medley. I found Fun Dip to be vastly superior to its cousin, Pixy Stix. I could never get over the whole sugar-in-paper thing; the paper would get all gross when you tried to eat the candy. It ruined the whole experience for me.

Bubble TapeBubble Tape–when Bubble Tape first arrived on the candy scene, it had me at hello. It was the coolest candy I had ever seen. 6 feet of gum stuffed into a bright red container! I imagine that my reaction to seeing Bubble Tape for the first time was similar to what cavemen looked like when the first witnessed fire. I remember buying it (or begging my mom or dad) whenever I could. Of course, I could only chew it for about 19 seconds before it turned into a rock but there was 6 feet of it. I could just get more. And I also remember how I hung onto that last few inches before the tape ran out. I would stare at it, hoping for a Hanukkah-like miracle. But alas, the miracle never came. So I bought more.

Mike and Ike–to this day, Mike and Ike remains my favorite childhood candy. My mom would buy them for me every week after she was done bowling and would get my sister and I from the little nursery/daycare room. Sure, when I see them, the smell of a bowling alley automatically fills my nose and I have a disturbing image of one of the worker ladies ripping the ear off my favorite stuffed animal, but somehow, the candy makes it all OK again. I’m not sure if it’s the sentimental value of the candy or the fact that they just rock, but I cannot pass them up whenever they’re around. (I will only eat the original flavors. All of the other versions are just wrong.)

Those were just some of the candies that punctuated my childhood. There were also Pop Rocks, Spree, Big League Chew, Blow Pops, Ring Pops, Candy Cigarettes…the list is actually quite lengthy. In fact, the amount of candy that I remember from my childhood is both amazing and disturbing. But I’m a child of the 80s. I also had big hair and wore neon. I think candy is a better memory.

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2 Responses to “Kitchen Table Talk: I love candy”

  1. stephb May 28, 2010 at 12:25 pm #

    i still love bubble tape. i actually have some at my house right now. and my favorite cereal of the 80’s was either cocoa krispies, teenage mutant ninja turtles, or peanut butter cap’n crunch. they were all great, but i mainly loved them because i was only allowed to have them on our beach vacation so they were a huge treat!!

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