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Gum One

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Speaking of chewing gum, I haven’t had any good chewing gum for a long time. My favorite used to be called Wintermute or Freshgreen, or something like that. It was not too minty and not too sweet. Then—-it seems like a long time ago—-the company changed the formula and ruined it. That action definitely falls in the category of “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” The whole idea behind that cliche is that when you go “fixing” things that have no problems, then you create problems.

In the case of my long-lost favorite chewing gum, they made it taste like chemicals. They put in an artificial sweetener that supposedly made the flavor last longer. Well if it doesn’t taste good anymore, why in the world would anyone want the flavor to last longer?

My impression of the flavor was no more wintergreen, but aluminum (or aluminium if you’re in the mood). At no time in the history of histories have I ever heard anyone say, “I’d really like to chew on some aluminum for an hour or so.” I’ve never seen anyone sucking on their aluminum can after their drink was gone. I’ve never seen anyone wad up a ball of aluminum foil and suck on that like some kind of alien lozenge.

Although I have heard of someone claiming to have eaten an aluminum can, I can only say that the brain power of someone entering into such an endeavor has to be as astounding as the event. Did I say the guy was stupid? Not directly. His pastime is food for sane people’s nightmares.

Give me a gumball laced with sugar, with flavor that lasts almost a minute and I’ll chew that ’til the flavor of it is the world around me. Give me a stick of chemical, metallic nastiness and I won’t even bother to unwrap it. I’ll just stick it in the bin with the rest of the recyclables.

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