Friday, August 28, 2015

The cheese that goes...

There is an apocryphal story of my youth that immediately after I had my tonsils removed, I asked for not ice cream, which is the standard request, but Cheetos, which are not soft nor smooth.  I liked Cheetos as a kid more than I do now, but if I'm line for a catered sub lunch, I'll reach for the Cheetos probably more often than I'd reach for anything else since nobody seems to go for sour cream and onion anymore.  I guess onion breath is more offensive than orange teeth.

A couple of years ago, Cheetos sort of rebooted Chester from a sort of loser who thinks he is the coolest cat on the block who spends the commercials trying (unsuccessfully) to get his paws on some delicious Cheetos into a weird kind of jerk who uses Cheetos not for food, really, but more as props primarily to embarrass some of the people around the human characters (usually friends or family) in the commercial.  (I tried to find more samples on YouTube, but searching for Cheetos is mostly crowded out by videos like this about getting Irish people to try American things.  I must admit, I was amused.)

As an example, two recent ones have a child firing Cheetos out of a catapult at her father (I think?) for stealing the remote or something.  Another has a child making a Cheeto bikini for her sleeping father so that when he wakes up, he'll have bikini tan lines.  In none of these are there anything about the Cheeto dust that gets on everything.  It's not as bad as Dorito dust or glitter, but it's in the conversation.

There are a number of baffling aspects of these commercials.  First, none of the people seem to be fazed by the fact that there is a cartoon Cheetah telling them what to do, which, now that I think about it, is reasonably consistent with the commercial universe.  But really, why not show case the snack as being desirable?  The earlier incarnation was not Geico Cavemen or anything as far as commercial quality goes, but it was clear that the snacks were so good that Chester was willing to endure physical pain.  In the new versions, I'm not really sure that the effects would be any different if they replaced the Cheetos with a bag of bread crusts cut off from little kids' sandwiches..

They've made more of these commercials that Darrell Hammond got to make Colonel Sanders commercials, so there must be something to it.  But to me, it makes me sad.  I cannot imagine 3 year old me wanting to ask for Cheetos with a mascot like this after a tonsilectomy.  I guess it really isn't easy being cheesy.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Pieces and Cups

I just saw a commercial for Reese's version of Nutella, and I must say I'm intrigued.  I have had good luck with Nutella, but, to be honest, I could do without its pretentiousness.  It's all European and hazelnutty and what not.  What is a hazelnut?  I'm not convinced it's not an invented flavor by coffee shops like how wine tasters say that a Merlot tastes like chocolate and leather.  Leather in my wine is neither probable nor desirable.

Reese's has to potential to close that gap with the lovable peanut, which all of us can easily identify.  There is a question, however, about Reese's that I really can't believe I hadn't already written about by now.  What does Reese's rhyme with?  I had a bevy of coworkers about a year and a half ago challenge me on this to the point of calling the question line phone number located on the wrapper of the cup.  Unfortunately, they gave them bad information -- citing their famous slogan of "There's no wrong way to eat a Reese's" -- they said there's no wrong way to say Reese's, either.  If I called it Rice's or Race's, that would be ludicrous, right?

In short, I think that anyone who calls Reese's Pieces Reesey's Piecey's deserves at minimum a night in the drunk tank.  I don't think they belong in the general prison population or anything, unless there are multiple offenses and lack of remorse.  Saying Reesey Cups deserves a harsher sentence, because there's no cutesy but tempting gateway rhyme built in.  It's going straight to the hard stuff.  Reese rhymes with piece.  Reese's rhymes with pieces.  Piecey's isn't anything.

I really like peanut butter desserts, and Reese's has got some fine products.  I enjoy the cups in any context and the pieces especially on my ice cream.  My favorite specialty variation is the eggs at Easter, giving us a delightful twist on the chocolate/peanut butter ratio.  So I may grab some Reese's spread at the store, and with any justice, that will be the product that ends this Reesey madness, since their is no melody to Reesey's spread.  Only the cacophonous nightmare that follows me everywhere there is a piecey.