Seems like yesterday, all of us running around the corner to Abie’s candy store with money in hand. Abie & his wife Simma rushing us. “C’mon, c’mon pick what you like and let’s go!”
Standing behind the counter making an egg cream and spying on us between the glass containers filled with pretzel sticks, they kept a close eye on us all to make sure we weren’t stealing.
It was a wonderland! Shelves and shelves filled with Turkish Taffy, candy cigarettes, candy buttons and more! If you had a dollar, you were set! You got 3 or 4 chocolate bars or a bag full of bazooka bubble gum and Mary Janes.
Everyone had their favorites. Some of my personal favorites were Mallo Cups and Sky Bars. I had sophisticated taste for a ten year old.
Remember wax lips? What was that all about? You wore them for a few laughs then actually chewed on flavored wax. I think back now and shake my head. Did I really chew wax?? That could explain a lot I guess. Also encased in wax was that other favorite, the flavored colored liquid in wax soda shaped bottles. Why didn’t we just buy a drink? Instead we bit the top of these wax bottles off, proceeded to drink that 1 tiny sip of liquid then threw it away.
We opened our box of candy cigarettes, pretended to smoke them imitating our parents and then ate them which were hard as rocks and really didn’t have much flavor. Some “smokers”preferred the bubble gum cigars! Same with those wafer like disks that held tiny little candy balls inside. When you put them in your mouth it tasted like melting cardboard. No joke! Or better yet if you are Catholic I am sure you can equate them with the host served at Communion at Sunday Mass. I think they were better known as Sattelite Wafers.
Then there were Neccos. The little hard circles that had no taste and were in weird colors. Why? Why? Why? At least once you whacked that bar of Bonomo turkish taffy against the table and put it in your mouth it had flavor. You may risk chipping a tooth here and there but once that flavor hit your taste buds all is forgiven. The banana and vanilla were my favorites.
Oh the joy of ice cubes. Not the kind you find in your freezer but the small chocolate squares that liquidized almost the very second they were placed on your tongue. They were the equivalent to today’s Godiva.
Zagnut! Where on God’s earth did they get that name. Occasionally I still see a few around. My good friend Toni is a big fan.
Razzles! Were they a candy or a gum? Actually both! Fun dip! We were virtually eating colored sugar by the mouthful! Could be the reason for the rise in diabetes.
Nowadays we are incorporating antioxidants into our “candy” by grabbing handfuls of dark chocolate, or acai berries drenched in chocolate hoping to increase our health benefits or is it really to lessen the “guilt?”
And then there are the more sophisticated candy gobblers. I, personally feel so classy lounging on my sofa in my flannel pajamas nibbling on a Godiva truffle. Reminiscent of those “Calgon, take me away” days. An ordinary Hershey bar would not have the same effect.
How many parents can relate to the annual “Halloween safety check?” Going through the haul of goodies to make sure they were free of “poison”. You know that was secretly a code word for “all chocolate goes to mom and dad” The Mary Janes, tootsie rolls, lollipops and bubble gun was safe from our siege!
In closing I guess not much has changed. Our sweet tooth and our love of candy has just morphed into a different form. We nibble on our truffles and chocolate covered strawberries daintily instead of gobbling down the smarties and candy buttons!