Remember candy cigarettes? Those sticks of gum done up to look like smokes with a red tip, and the puff of some sort of powder when you blew through it once?
Man those used to make me want to smoke so badly when I was a kid. No joking, either. I couldn’t wait to be old enough to puff on a “real” smoke like all the kids that I thought were cool.
Then the candy cigarettes all but disappeared — I stopped seeing them in stores, and I assumed that they were outlawed as part of the ongoing war against cigarette advertising. But I guess I was just looking in the wrong places. This past weekend I went to an ice cream shop done up in 1950s style with some friends. Lo and behold! Candy cigarettes! “WTF?” I said. “I thought these things were taken off the market!” I haven’t been this excited about candy since my Valium necklace.
(They also had some big-league chew, which I’ve not seen in a while, either. Big league chew never got me interested in dip, for what that’s worth.)
Unfortunately, I didn’t have any cash on me, so I couldn’t buy ’em, but I did open the pack, and they looked decidedly less appetizing than they used to. Amazing what time and experience will do…
For nostalgia’s sake, you can still get candy cigarettes pretty easily. Amazon will happily sell you a wide variety, for example, and they’ve also got Big League Chew. (Actually, I think the only things Amazon doesn’t sell are cars and houses, but that’s what eBay is for.)
Somewhat off-topic: this page is an interesting run-down of the various candy cigarettes over the years and in various parts of the world. I think the type I used to chew as a kid were mostly Mustangs — since re-branded to “Stallions” because RJ Reynolds was too short-sighted to recognize that another company was doing their marketing for them.
In any case, my mom used to be deathly afraid of me getting candy cigarettes for fear that it would lead me to smoking. So I used to have to do it discreetly. I think that added to the allure of both candy cigarettes and smoking in general.
The title of this blog post comes from Family Guy, Season 3, Episode 3 from Baby Smokes a Lot: “Hehe! Tastes like happy!” — which I would upload to share because it’s hilarious and oh so wrong… if only I could find an easy way to export Ogg Media Video files to a more web-friendly format. Argh!
[tags]Candy cigarettes, big league chew, nostalgia[/tags]