Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The Gum Crisis

So what with health care, the economy, war, impending environmental meltdowns, etc., a lot of terrible things have been happening lately, under the radar. What if I was to tell you that chewing gum really makes me angry and worried lately? Would you merely shake your head and call me 'incorrigible' or some other 24 point Scrabble word? (If it was on a double word score. I hate Scrabble, by the way, but that is another subject, for another blog.) Would you go on, clicking your way, webpage by webpage, blog by blog until your life collapses around you? Your houseplants dying, your pets starving, your kids getting into Magic Cards, your wife taking aromatherapy classes, all because you are lost in your little internet world, and can't OPEN YOUR FUCKING EYES? Well, click no further, this is the blog where we tackle the big issues. In this installment, I take a big bite outta chewing gum.
It seems like only yesterday that a 5 stick pack of Wrigley's was 25 cents. The commercials were plentiful, the gum was good and cheap, and everyone was happy. Then, as all things must progress on this fast train to oblivion we call life, the price rose to 35 cents. Then, all those fancy gums came out. "Dentyne Ice", "Orbit", "Bacon Flavored", etc. All of a sudden, a fancy piece of gum meant more. If you were on a date and you offered the lucky guy, girl, transgendered or no gendered person a piece of "Arctic Chill", you were gettin some action! No little peck on the cheek for old Snyder's Onion and Garlic Sourdough Pretzel Pieces over here. We're talking french kissing. Like Chocolat style. All of a sudden, gum was more than something I absent-mindedly chewed on all day, it was like a drug, a high. The flavors were so intense that they would bring me to a higher state of consciousness, and sometimes they would even lead to make out sessions.
Those carefree (pun intended) days of my 2 or 3 years ago youth are gone. I'm taken now, and I work hard for the money. Sometimes after several coffees and an Italian hoagie, I just want a damn slice of gum. Used to be, I'd find me a little pack of Wrigley's, whether it was Juicyfruit, Doublemint, Spearmint, Winterfresh, or for those days when I was just livin on the edge, Big Red. 35 cents poorer, I was happy to absentmindedly chew my gum for the rest of the day, happy as a pig in shit. No longer.
Now, If I want to get some friggin Juicyfruit, I gotta buy this unwieldy 15 piece pack for like a buck 50. This is bullshit! This pack of gum is so big and awkward that pretty soon I will have to buy a fanny pack just to store my gum. Not to mention that just a few years ago, 15 slices of gum would have cost half as much. Nowadays, if you're lucky enough to find a store that sells the gum 5 pieces at a time, it would only cost you a buck-o-five for the same amount of gum. But, since it comes in a big package and looks like a fancy gum, its a buck fifty. As if this wasn't terrible enough, don't even get me started with Big League Chew and Bazooka Joe. Oh, and Juicyfruit is bright yellow now? What the hell is up with that? With this level of shenanigans going on with our gum, how long till the people say "we've had enough!" ?!
I wonder about the future of gum. Will it someday be a treat only for the rich and powerful? Will people evolve and grow cud things that they can chew on in gum's absence? All I can say is that I hope the people in charge of America's gum firms look at this blog and hear my plea for cheap, plentiful gum. Don't tread on me, gum makers, don't you tread on me.

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