Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Candy Can't

    It's that time of year again: lots of family togetherness, an avalanche of red and green, and incessant commercialism. In tow with that are other aspects of the Christmas time that I look forward to much less. Chiefly, the ridiculous, perilous crap-shoot that is candy canes. I've given up hope, you see, on the fragile sticks of mint and the seasonal disappointment they herald.
    I have to assume they are designed to fail. I've never gotten a box of candy canes home from the store intact. I usually end up with what appears to be glass shrapnel from a barber pole. The ones, interestingly enough, that don't break are the ones my family had (back when we used to do a tree for X-mas, a past era I mourn gravely). These are the candy canes that are purely ornamental. The ones that live for 11 months in box in the attic next to the antique silverware. Come to think of it, it wouldn't surprise me to find out that the candy canes crossed the Atlantic with the silverware as my granny fled Europe. I sure don't have any memory of when they were bought, I assume neither do my parents. I feel like a candy hoarder, with boxes of centuries-old sweets gathering dust in storage.
    The modern candy canes, though, the ones that are theoretically for eating don't bring me any joy as well. it astounds me, with how easily they shatter in transit, biting a candy cane is about as rewarding as biting a brick. If through some miracle I manage to get a piece to break off without chipping a tooth, I'm left to pray that a razor shard doesn't give me a new piercing. So the other option, besides biting, is to suck on the candy cane, and aside from the suggestive nature of this endeavor, the result is the classic candy cane shiv. If I ever go to prison I'll sneak in candy canes to improvise a weapon. Talk about a festive way to retaliate on a rival gang. Merry Christmas! And Hanukah. And Kwanzaa. And winter solstice. Whatever.

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