There seems to be a progression in my mind of chewy fruit candies that I am willing to eat. Although I’m not really a big candy-eater; I prefer steak or pizza any day. But in Dar es Salaam, we can buy candies that I haven’t seen since leaving the states. And so, I give you my four-stage progression in the chewiness of fruit candies:
1. Skittles — These are chewy candies, but not chewy enough to even begin to get stuck in your teeth. The taste is nice and fruity, though I much prefer the orange ones. Also, it’s nice to hold two Skittles between your thumb and forefinger and squeeze them together. The stronger of the two (survival of the fittest) will remain whole, while the other forms a flower shape. Probably this is more appealing to 10-year old girls than to most of you, but I’m just saying… Personally, I hate the “Taste the Rainbow” campaign.
2. Mentos — I probably should have done some research before writing this blog post, but it seems to me this is a dumb name for these candies — except the mint-flavored ones of course. I’m guessing maybe the company started out with only the mint flavor, and then later added fruit? And they weren’t willing to lose what brand recognition they’d gained up until that point? I mean with those awesome commercials and all… Mentos are chewier than Skittles, and I don’t think you can make flowers with them. But you can explode a diet coke!
3. Starburst — At this point in our progression, we must say our goodbyes to the candy-coatings, because from here on out, it’s all chewiness. Starburst(s) — am I supposed to put an ‘s’ on the end of Starburst to make it plural? Definitely should have done my research… Where was I… oh, Starburst are pretty stinkin’ chewy. And I think their taste has a deeper level of fruitiness than the two previously mentioned candies of the progression chart. Starburst have a way of making your mouth water with a slight tingle on the back of your tongue. Also, you can tell that Starburst are going to be really chewy, because inside the package each candy is individually wrapped. For those of you who don’t know how to judge candy chew-factor based on appearance and wrapping only, this is the best and most clear sign of a chewy candy.
4. Now & Later — These are the chewiest of all the candies I’m putting in this series! They’re really chewy. Sometimes my teeth get stuck together when I eat them. It’s kind of like combining a Starburst and a Jolly Rancher — I wonder if that’s where the company got the idea…? Anyway, you remember the mouth-watering that comes with Starburst? Now & Laters have that times infinity. My mouth is watering now, just thinking about them. Also, they have a way of making your throat burn just a little — kind of like a freezer pop. Yeah, the perfect combination of Starburst, Jolly Rancher, and freezer pop! Now & Laters rule! If you’re going for a chewy fruit candy, this one is heads and tails above the rest — no competition. The kid who gets his mom to buy these for him at the ballpark is generally the most popular kid around. Until late junior high — then it becomes the one with dipping tobacco (but that’s another blog altogether). Also, please note that Now & Laters, too, come individually wrapped inside the package, only their wrapper is kind of generic and cool, like Cinnaburst. Remember that gum? Everyone was so excited that you could eat the wrapper?! I was like, “What?! You can eat ANY paper?! But why would that be a goal?” I mean it doesn’t take that long to open a stick of gum… or a chewy fruit candy.
So, it’s settled. Now & Laters are totally the best.