I have mentioned on the blog my obsession with candy and my secret food-porn fetish book Candyfreak, written by future diabetic Steve Almond, but I haven't really gone into the depths of how far I will go to consume as much -- and as great a variety of -- candy as possible.
To read Almond's book, which chronicles his tours of regional candy factories in the midwest -- is to suddenly yearn to taste confections with names like The Idaho Spud and the Twin Bing (which looks, to quote the book, like "gorilla balls"). If you are a true freak, you will find yourself Googling these little-known candies, only to find that they are only sold in bulk, and buying 25 candy bars best described as "gray nougat in the shape of a potato" just doesn't seem wise given that you've never actually tasted it. In the interest of full disclosure, after my first read of the book in 2005 I did order 36 Goo Goo Clusters -- a Southern favorite that is essentially a misshapen lump of marshmallow, peanuts, caramel, and chocolate - over the Internet and ended up only eating two before I got so sick of them that I gave some away and froze the rest, only to throw them out uneaten when I moved to a new apartment that summer. Suffice to say that even in my most blood sugar-deficient moments I know that ordering foreign candy online is not a good idea.
Fast forward to today, when I found myself in Ricky's, a delightful New York drug store that also sells sex toys and feather boas, shopping for a razor. As I walked to the back, a red box caught my eye. On its candy-colored cover were the words 'Twin Bing'. Upon closer inspection, I realized that this magical box contained fifteen not only classic, but rare candy bars, among them the Idaho Spud, the Goo Goo Cluster, and, yes, the gorilla balls. I was only mildly concerned by the bright green 50% OFF sticker on top of the box, luminescent under a thin film of dust. Chocolate keeps pretty well, right? And also, 50% off! Sweet!
Now I am in possession of a huge box of old, weird candy, but, like a true freak, I am going to re-read Almond's book as a sort of food foreplay before I dig in and make myself sick. Look for my reviews in the (perilously) near future!