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.

babies bag

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.

babies legrand eating

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.


22 Responses to “let’s eat some babies”

  1. Jeff Says:

    After a couple years do they become “sour patch kids?”.

    Seems to me that they should make a vegetable shape candy. Then if you eat a five pound box on a sugar bender and someone asks what you had for lunch, you can say “a salad.”

    • dug Says:

      Seems to me that they should make a vegetable shape candy. Then if you eat a five pound box on a sugar bender and someone asks what you had for lunch, you can say “a salad.”

      dammit, i wish i’d thought of that.

  2. bikemike Says:

    is a “strong oxidizing agent”, stronger than say, oh uh, a 00 agent? “all right agent oxidizer we need you to get in there and wreak havoc on some jelly babies”. something like that?

    ok, i’ll shut up now…sorry, i’m low on caffine today…may need some sugar too.

  3. mark Says:

    My two-year-old and I find it amusing when I threaten to eat her and then kiss her instead. Perhaps someone really did want to eat his own children and this is what saved them.

  4. rabidrunner Says:

    The only thing worse than a candy baby would be a candy baby Jesus.

  5. Doug Says:

    Just do not point it at your kids.

    • KanyonKris Says:

      What language are those people speaking?

      • bikemike Says:

        oh my freaking gosh, i can’t wait for dug’s version of this.

        that’s the language they speak at the inns out in the middle of nowhere when hobbits get lost.

        • Adventure Nell Says:

          KanyonKris, they are english, as in England English. FYI – They have a lower class accent…as pointed out to me by my mother who speaks posh england english 😉

  6. KanyonKris Says:

    Indeed a disturbing candy.

    Hey, the package says they’re natural. Oh, natural COLOR.

    I’ll just eat my sugar babies. Better candy that looks like turds than infants.

  7. MOCougFan Says:

    I can’t get past “PAEAN”. Had to look that one up as well.

    Seriously… how do you know these words?

  8. Mathias Says:

    Being that you never heard of Emmet Otters Jug band Christmas you probably don’t know that Jelly Babies were the snack of choice for Doctor Who (the famous British Sci Fi show that would appear on US public TV stations). They were illegal to import into the US because the dye used for the red one was considered carcinogenic.

  9. Alex/Watcher Says:

    Oxidizing agent: Potassium chlorate, KCLO3. You can pick up a pound of the stuff for $7.56 at:


    My work here is done…

    • dug Says:

      wait, alex, i need more. would bleach work? or iodine? you know, stuff i’m more likely to have laying around the house.

      i mean, i’ll order that stuff, don’t think i won’t. but if i don’t have to, i’d rather not wait.

      i don’t know why i’m typing this–i should just sacrifice a couple babies and test the bleach out, right?

      i’m babbling now. let’s move on.

      • Alex/Watcher Says:

        Bleach or iodine should totally work. but I got the KClO3 recommendation from my buddy OCRick, a chemistry professor at the U. So my guess is that household stuff will be fine, unless you need to “weaponize” your jelly babies.

  10. I’ll eat Sour Patch Kids, but I draw the line at these babies.

  11. Tim D Says:

    Did you eat them head first or feet first?

  12. Victoria Says:

    Just found your blog through fatcyclist.com – Really fun to read. Thanks for the smiles today.


  13. Paul Says:

    Came over from Fat Cyclist a while ago, and have been lurking ever since, but as a real ‘England English’ person I have to say LEAVE OUR CONFECTIONARY ALONE. Sorry to shout, but, well …

    And head first of course – do you think we’re weird, Mason Verger, or something ?


    (Hampton, London, England)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: