I worked in California last week. I flew in early last Sunday so I could spend the day in San Francisco. I hung out with Uncle Joe, not really site seeing, but wandering around the city. Joe wanted to go to the World Market by the wharf. While he shopped for soaps for his new girlfriend, I found a 75% off sale on what World Market called “nostalgic candy.” Nostalgic candy consists of brands that were popular sometimes between the 70’s and the great depression. We are mostly composed of 90% sugar shaped into gelatinous or crispy blocks and generally tasting vaguely of fruit or peanut butter. At work we have another name for these: Stupid Candy. After Halloween bags of leftover candy appear at work. The Snickers, M&M, and Skittles are gone by November 2. What remains are the Dots, Juicy Fruits, mini Chick-O-Stick, and those gray and brown crunchy rectangles that taste of peanut butter. While it is clear that these are stupid candies, some of us at work discovered a mutual affection for these, and have been known – on occasion to buy these on purpose and bring them into the office. The most divisive of all the stupid candy are the Circus Peanut. Circus Peanut are study orange marshmallows shaped roughly like peanuts and tasting somewhat banana flavored. Most people claim to hate these, including apparently World Market’s clientele. I was able to snag bags of Circus Peanuts, Pixie Sticks, and Squirrel Nut Zippers for 50 cents each (actually, I have never had Squirrel Nut Zippers before and had bought them because of the band popular in the 90s.) In the office on Monday, stupid candy provided as unpopular and divisive with people I was working with in California was it was back home. Fortunately, I knew that my coworker Kara, who was also traveling from Austin would help me with the stupid candy.
The stupidest candies of the week were M&Ms from the “honor bar” in my hotel room. These were stupid because of they were priced at $7, they probably cost the hotel about 40 cents, and I was charged nothing. This was real stupid candy – a fiction of value. The hotel gave me $10 credit toward their ridiculously high priced candies that cost them almost nothing.
I ate them anyway. I’m not going to pass up free M&Ms.
Hertz gave me a Prius this time. I appreciate Priuses, but I don’t really like them. Visibility is obstructed and when you go in reverse, the car beeps on the inside. I’m not sure what that is about. They gave me a Prius 2 year ago. I had trouble starting it. There were a lot of buttons, i wasn’t sure which to press. Most cars, I turn the key and lightly tap the gas. In a Prius, if your foot is not on the brake when you push the start button, you are completely screwed – you have to shut the whole thing down. This was not intuitive to me. I kept trying to push buttons in different sequences. I sat there stuck in the parking lo, until I finally called my dad who owned a Prius. We was already in Houston with Mom by that time chasing a cure, and I still called him for advice sometime. Except for the crappy visibility, I had no problem with the Prius this time. But I missed my dad’s voice.
They were in a bag banded with the hotel logo slightly larger than the “King Size” bags found at the gas station convenience store, and like everything else in the honor bar, they ridiculously overpriced, but the hotel had given me $10 credit . I guess