Sno Ball memories never melt.
Warning! Before you go any further, those with weak stomachs may want to turn to the sports pages and read all the good things we are writing about the New England Patriots.
(Go Patriots, beat that nice young fellow from Denver.)
Anyway, it may surprise you to know that I was not always the lean, hard bodied fitness guru you know today. It's hard to believe, I know. But it is true.
At one time I was, how can we say this politely, uh, even leaner.
Okay. I did have a few decades when I was considering a career as a competitive eater, and people would say to me, "How ya doin' big fella," but through much of my youth I was a 90-pound weakling.
Why is this noteworthy? Counter-intuitively, through those years, I was also deeply addicted to Hostess Sno Balls. I've read recently many of the jokes being passed around about Twinkies since it was announced Hostess was declaring bankruptcy. I am a little offended. I love Twinkies and love Sno Balls even more. When I was young, I found it nearly impossible to pass by a display of Sno Balls.
For you health freaks out there who snack on bits of celery and fruit, (I'm now looking to the right at my kitchen table where my lunch is laid out waiting to be packaged to take to work) you don't know what you are missing.
Tasty and sweet with perfect texture, Hostess Sno Balls are cakes shaped like baseballs cut in half. The cake is chocolate and much like a devil's-food cake (go figure). The cake is coated with a pink or white marshmallow cover with lots of cocoanut infused in it. There are also seasonal Sno Balls colored green (St. Patrick's Day), orange and glow-in-the-dark (Halloween) and lavender (spring), but the original in 1947 was white, and pink was introduced three years later.
Just that would be enough to make a true snack addict squeal with delight, but the kicker is there is a healthy dollop of cream inside the cake. The combination makes my mouth water just thinking about it. The creamy filling - the outer covering just chewy enough that you can bite off pieces of it along with a little cake - Yum! Yum!
And they are cultural. They were eaten in episodes of the X-Files and the Gilmore Girls and the movie, "The Mirror Has Two Faces."
Those of us who grew up in the 1950s and '60s spent an awful lot of time eating vegetables and fruit. It was available and cheap for our parents because they could grow it. That sort of Spartan diet made us crave sugary snacks all the more. When we would get our hands on a package of Sno Balls, we would tear into them like rabid squirrels. Of course that was when I was in my teens and 20s when I could get away with a little unhealthy living.
Today I treat my Sno Balls like fine wine, savoring the aroma and chewing each bite hundreds of times, knowing it could easily be my last.
The recent bankruptcy of Hostess is significant, not so much for the possible loss of a food company. Businesses go bankrupt all the time, but the Hostess bankruptcy shows a significant change in our culture. People are not as likely to walk into a convenience store and grab a couple of Twinkies, Ho Hos, Ding Dongs, Sno Balls or a bag of Wonder Bread anymore. Those things harken back to an era that has long passed except in the minds of a few Republican candidates.
I/we don't make sugar sandwiches on Wonder Bread anymore. I/we are more likely to gnaw our way through an organic peanut butter sandwich made of whole wheat bread coated with sunflower seeds. I/we feel compelled to reach for fruit roll-ups, rather than diving face first into the center of a Suzy Q.
We are more responsible. Sigh. We do things better. Sigh. We will live forever. Sigh. Contact George Barnes via email at email@example.com.
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|Title Annotation:||LOCAL NEWS|
|Publication:||Telegram & Gazette (Worcester, MA)|
|Date:||Jan 14, 2012|
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