Back Story

Admitting My Addiction

Those infernal little pushers are back. Guilelessly, they wait, confident we will come.

My utter lack of control in the face of Girl Scouts’ Thin Mints recalls a post I wrote but didn’t publish last fall:

Every year, it’s the same. I know it’s coming. I know I will feel powerless in the face of it. I feel an annual sense of dread that others will find me out, will discover that I have this urge….

So I’m coming clean.

Here it is: I love candy corn.

And not in a wholesome, happy memories, nice to reminisce kind of way. I love candy corn in an ugly, out of control, snarfing sort of way. An eat-the-whole-bag-in-a-sitting kind of way.

I can’t explain it. I believe I am otherwise a rationale and health-conscious human being. Intellectually, I know there is nothing — NO THING — of redeeming value about those little techno-colored corn syrup kernels. But. I. Love. Them.

And: I. Loathe. Them. They’re not actually all that tasty. The sugar is cloying, the texture uneven. Don’t even get me started on the colors and free radicals. And yet, I cannot resist them if — when —  I dip in. I feel sure the recipe satisfies some basic physiological dependence, some primal biological need, but I am at a loss as to what that might be. I harbor no illusions that nutrition comes into this in any way.

That we crave — and sometimes crave things that are demonstrably, desperately, devastatingly bad for us — is a potent thing. I am humbled, in awe of the courage and fortitude of those who face down far more insidious urges, moment to moment, day by day, year after year.

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