let’s eat some babies
January 7, 2010
At what point did some product manager or marketer in a conference room say “Guys! GUYS! Check this out–you know how the boys in the lab have come up with some kind of soft confectionary candy type thing? Well, I know most of you are leaning toward making them in the shape of a platypus. Or maybe something amorphous. But let me run THIS up the flag pole and see if anyone salutes it–BABIES! That’s right, not just candy, but edible CANDY babies. Little ones, maybe with a coating of some kind of gross powdery sugar stuff.”
Well, I’ll tell you at what point. It was some guy at Bassetts’ headquarters in Sheffield, England, in 1919, and Bassett’s introduced the Jelly Baby as a way to commemorate the end of World War 1.
That’s right. Everybody does what they can, and produces according to their comparative advantage. Bassett’s, of course, made candy. So they commemorated the end of the worst war in human history by creating and marketing edible candy babies.
Thanks, Nick (a friend from, and I can never remember which, but from Australia, New Zealand, or South Africa. Ha! People from those places LOVE jokes that get them all confused (okay, fine, he’s from Australia. I think.)), for sending me a bag and bringing this paean to ingenuity and humanity to my attention.
Last April I talked about E.L. Fudges, and how that seemed a bit like friendly cannibalism.
This just seems weird. The babies have NAMES. They have personalities. And they are BABIES. HUMAN babies. James Cameron will be making a movie about them someday, I feel sure.
Happy Armistice Day!
The verdict? Kind of icky. And by the way, they contain some gelatin–so you’ll be glad to know they are off limits to vegetarians.
The Jelly Babies Wikipedia page says that a popular science class experiment is to put them in a strong oxidizing agent, and see the resulting spectacular reaction. The experiment is commonly referred to as: “Screaming jelly babies.”
Guess what I’ll be doing this week? That’s right, I’ll be shopping for a strong oxidizing agent.
I’m all a flutter.