for yesterday - technical difficulties. It's
up now, and you might enjoy an account of "Toy
Story 4," which was not what I thought it was
going to be. Except that it was.
I bought some licorice for
Daughter to enjoy upon her return, since
something told me there wasn’t a lot of it in
Brazil. Perhaps there was, but she might not
have been with a family that incorporated
licorice into their lives. Some don’t. Some,
like ours, will go for years at a time without
consuming any licorice, until an opportunity
presents itself - and then you think why don’t
I eat more licorice? This is delicious.
You may disagree; takes all kinds, de
gustibus, etc. But I have found some I really
like: Wiley Wallaby. You think: authentic
Australian licorice! They really know how to
make it there. But no. It’s from Perham MN.
Once it was called “Australian style,” but no
more; I guess that didn’t have the cachet they
The company also makes dog food. Tuffy’s! I
remember those sacks from years ago; a
tough-looking dog, winking. It was the nick of
one of the founders, I gather. I also expect
that the two lines are kept separate for
manufacturing purposes, although there are
some common ingredients. What would you guess
is the #1 ingredient in licorice?
Huh. Somehow you thought it was . . .
something stiffer? More rubbery? Somehow you
thought the the licorice itself was a viscous
substance, formed into ropes or chunks?
No. When I was growing up, licorice could be
had in three forms:
Whips. The classic six-inch
stick, with twisty ridges
Laces. Very thin, strawberry
flavored, eaten in clumps. Note: the problem
with “strawberry licorice” or “red licorice”
will be death with in a minute.
||Nibs. From memory,
the package was Egyptian in style, with
a clear window that let you observe the
Nibs. They were underwhelming, but they
were different than the other candies in
their flavors, so this set them apart.
(There was a licorice representative in the
Chuckles package, but the sugar overwhelmed
We had Nibs before Twizzlers, I seem to
recall - but they’re both made by the same
company, Y & S, a confectioner since 1840.
Nabisco owns it now, of course. A 1975 NYT
interview with the president said he was
trying to raise his brands’ profiles, so
people would say “black Twizzler” for black
licorice and “Red Twizzler” for a strawberry
whip, but the end result was the horror of RED
LICORICE, which had no licorice profile at
Red Nibs were introduced, and tasted like
Anyway: if no one had ever saved the Nibs
wrapper, I’d have to rely on memory, and since
I can’t draw it, my description would be all
the evidence we had. And then I die and
everyone in my generation dies, and the
evidence is never first-hand again.
But someone did save it, for some reason. And
someone who collected a lot of packaging, for
some reason, bequeathed it to someone else,
who put up a ton of pictures on Flickr. I’m
not crazy about Flickr sets anymore, when it
comes to vintage collections; the images just
float in the black, often without stories or
contexts. But at least someone took the time
and work to put them up, where they will
provide a humble testament to their era . . .
Until Flickr goes the way of all websites.