If you’re inclined to check out your local Dollar Tree store (and who doesn’t enjoy the occasional round of observing white trash in their natural environment?), you simply must take the time to browse the candy aisle. Among the expired bags of Pop Rocks and Brach’s hard candies, you’ll find the sort of oddball treats you just can’t find anywhere else. Like, say, cotton candy sealed up in a Mylar bag like some kind of twisted astronaut food. Or, if that doesn’t strike your fancy, try the following horrific things, each a carnival of terror for your tongue. You don’t buy this shit because you like it – you buy it to inflict it on your friends. So, inflict it we shall…let the torture begin!
Nathan’s Famous Gummi Hot Dogs
Apparently, Nathan’s is a reputably famous hot dog place from Atlantic City or someplace like that with boardwalks and Tilt-A-Whirls and casinos and all that good stuff that makes people from New Jersey feel a little less depressed about living in the world’s asshole. The aforementioned Nathan and/or his heirs will apparently also whore out the establishment’s good name, attaching it to all manner of food-like substances sold in convenience stores across the nation, from potato chips to pretzels. Sadly, unlike their larger meat-filled brethren, these hot dog-shaped gummy bits are not so famous and not so good.
The stench from the bag was like opening the door on a closet filled with gummy bear blood, ripe and fruity and full of the scent of failure…er, gelatin.
On tasting the psuedo-wiener, it was like biting into an old rubber tire vaguely flavored like some kind of fruit. Don’t ask me what kind of fruit. Maybe that weird alien pear thing that Anakin levitates in Attack of the Clones. It was definitely a fruit not of this Earth, a fruity frankfurter come down from the stars to terrorize us. Or maybe just confuse the hell out of us. You don’t expect something shaped like a hot dog to taste like fruit, even weird alien fruit.
The so-called gummy hot dog was so tough and rubbery that you couldn’t really bite it so much as just cram the whole thing into your mouth and hope you could mangle it into submission with your molars before your jaw muscles gave out from exhaustion.
Chuck E. Cheese’s Gummi Pizza
Note that, like the so-called hot dogs above, “gummi” is spelled with an “i”, probably due to some obscure trademark nonsense that no one really cares about except the lawyers. In this case, the fake food was in wedges shaped vaguely like slices of pizza, with blotches of red and green that looked like someone threw up on them.
These turned out to be another rubbery exercise in prolonged mastication, though nowhere near as bad as the so-called hot dogs. They had less of the hard and stale feel, and were marginally softer. What would make a semi-reputable establishment like Chuck E. Cheese affiliate their name with something like this?
Really, the weird alien fruit flavor wasn’t any worse than the Nathan’s hot dogs, but it wasn’t any better, either. It’s that kind of vaguely familiar taste that comes from what the packaging claims are “natural” flavors, which are natural in the same way Pamela Anderson’s breasts are natural. Come to think of it, these gummy things are probably made from the same material as Pam Anderson’s boobies.
Probably the most disturbing thing about these gummy and marshmallow psuedo-foods is that you would expect them to taste like the things they’re modeled after (despite the fact that they make no claims of “authentic flavor” or the like on the package). As the Maitre d’ noted:
You’re expecting Bertie Bott’s beans, and all you really get is a vague fruit flavor. For that reason, I have yet to figure out what kid would beg his parent for these candies. Perhaps that’s why they’re at the Dollar Tree.
Somewhere, I imagine some kid begged his mom to buy him some Chuck E. Cheese candy. Then there was much crying and wailing and gnashing of teeth afterwards. After a few years of therapy, he might be able to set foot in a novelty pizza place again.
Also, back in my day, it weren’t called “Chuck E. Cheese.” Nosirree. We called it “Showbiz Pizza,” and its mascot wasn’t a rat, it was some big ol’ bear thing that wore suspenders. I don’t reckon they still have ’em, but we were scared of them got-dang unholy animatronics. Them things moved all by theirselves, and I tell ye that ain’t natural.
As you can see, the experience of eating these gummy monstrosities has taken its toll on the Maitre d’s sanity. Exposure to Cthulhu himself might possibly strip someone of Sanity Points slower than these things. Of course, none of us were exactly rational to begin with, or we wouldn’t be eating marshmallow and gummy things shaped like real food.
Next Time: Mallow Fries and Mallow Burgers!