I have met the enemy, and it is wrapped in a rich, chocolaty coating

We’ve got to go shopping if we want to get Em’s Christmas gift to Malaysia on time,” Deb said last week. “And we need Halloween candy.”

Noooooo!” I cried. “Don’t get Halloween candy yet!”

I’m not going to not buy Halloween candy just because you’re worried you’re going to eat it all,” she said. “Just don’t eat it.”

Easier said than done. Chocolate and confections are designed to crush will power. Chocolate alone is famous for releasing pleasure-inducing endorphins. That’s science, and you can’t argue with science (unless you’re the Harper government).

I would therefore like to blame science for the insatiable sweet tooth that I’ve developed over the last few years. In more glass-half-full moods, I try to think of it as a lifestyle choice, a lifestyle that includes sugar crashes and canker sores. Sometimes I spin it as policy: No Pez Left Behind, or Don’t Ask Don’t Tell Me You Ate All The Kit Kats.

Mostly, though, I consider it a habit tinged with regret and telltale stains. When you start raiding bags of Chipits at midnight, you know should be scanning the Yellow Pages for support groups.

And it’s not even my fault (says the addict). Deb buys most of the chocolates and treats, and then she doesn’t touch them.

Why do you buy them if you don’t eat them?” I complain.

Because I might want one,” she says.

But James and I end up eating them,” I say.

Don’t eat them then. They’re mine.”

James and I end up eating them.

I’ll buy you more,” I say sheepishly.

Never is the temptation greater than at Halloween, which is no longer just a day but a full season, like the Christmas season and the sports labour-conflict season. Early in October, store shelves begin to swell with cheap candy, poorly made masks and plastic body parts, which is both symptomatic of something twisted in our culture and another thing we can blame on cheap Chinese imports.

And while it might be easy to bypass the Bloody Brain in Syrup at your local Dollarama, those boxes of Fun-Size chocolate bars at the grocery store are another kettle of Twix.

Crunchy on the inside.

We’re sweet, and tiny and mostly harmless,” they call out. “We’re like a box of tiny Olsen twins.”

Sure, but after I’ve eaten a dozen, they turn into tiny David Spades, and that pleasantly endorphined brain turns into a Willy Wonky stomach.

Here’s an example of what happens: I come home at midday to let the dog out. I’ve had lunch at work and now I’m craving a little something sweet. I walk in, clean up the garbage the dog has gotten into (“Bad dog! That stuff’s not good for you!”), let the dog out, and, while she’s taking care of business, I get a Fun Size Mars bar from the candy bowl. Might as well make it two for double the fun. In four meagre bites, they’re gone. Maybe one more.

And three more in my pocket to take back to work for later.

I eat them as soon as I get back to work.

Bad Ross! That stuff’s not good for you!”

So you see how helpless I felt when we ended up at a Sherbrooke department store, which we’ll call MallWart (“Nooooo!”), and why I groaned as we approached the mausoleum of munchies.

This is for Halloween,” Deb said. “Stay out of it. Or do you want me to buy you one just to have?”

No. I don’t want it. I don’t need it.”

At home, the boxes and bags ended up in the basement, out of sight, out of stomach.

Later that evening, I heard a rattle, and then the distinctive sound of Caramilks and Snickers tumbling into a bowl.

Hey, I thought you didn’t buy any to open now,” I protested.

I didn’t say James couldn’t have one,” Deb said.

I don’t feel so good.


About rossmurray1

I'm Canadian so I pronounce it "Aboot." No, I don't! I don't know any Canadian who says "aboot." Damnable lies! But I do know this Canadian is all about humour (with a U) and satire. Come by. I don't bite, or as we Canadians say, "beet."
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34 Responses to I have met the enemy, and it is wrapped in a rich, chocolaty coating

  1. javaj240 says:

    Fun size is just an illusion. A marketing ploy. I call them ton size… because after I polish off a bag, I know I’ve gained a ton. Ugh!

    • rossmurray1 says:

      “Ton size.” I like it. (And now comes the part where you suddenly hate me: I can eat as many of those suckers as I want and I won’t likely gain an ounce. Hooray for genes and metabolism!)

  2. Nic says:

    The “sports labour-conflict season” – Ha! It’s sad and true.

  3. Pingback: Searching for sugar, man! | Drinking Tips for Teens

  4. rossmurray1 says:

    Reblogged this on Drinking Tips for Teens and commented:

    I’m reblogging this piece from a year ago because the little bastards have shown up in my house again, plus yesterday’s post was such a bummer.

  5. Elyse says:

    In all other things in life, I am virtuous. But not candy. I no longer even walk down the candy aisle as I am overweight and once I start … well you know.

    Still, I am virtuous in everything else. Nobody can be perfect; it would be way too annoying.

  6. franhunne4u says:

    Why, if you do not gain weight and your metabolism if finishing that off without a trace, are you so averse to them??!!

  7. shalilah2002 says:

    I had to solve this by buying bubble gum instead of those little chocolate bars. I can’t have them in the house. It’s frightening.

  8. Oy, I know the pain. My land lady puts a candy bowl in the foyer from October 1 – the new year and every day I say “not today!” and then promptly empty the bowl. Stay STRONG!

  9. Shannon says:

    I love love love sweets! You want to know my awful solution, though? Making my body decide that after 18 years, it is allergic to chocolate. And it isn’t just the cocoa…white chocolate gives me the same affect; a closed throat. Not even something minor. Oh, and I still get the cravings. So, here’s your excuse for your chocolate cravings and snackings: you are enjoying a piece for your blogger friend Shannon who has willingly (okay, not so willingly) given up chocolate. (Stupid allergies!!)

  10. benzeknees says:

    I am a huge chocolate fan! Due to my limited mobility hubby now does all the shopping. His snack of choice is salty, so we always have chips, etc. in the house. But he knows I will pig out if he brings chocolate into the house, so he doesn’t buy it – EVER! I’m lucky if I can get him to buy a box of fudgesicles so I can have one after dinner. To me dinner is not complete without dessert!

  11. cat9984 says:

    That is so unfair. Doesn’t your wife know that if it’s in plain sight, it’s impossible to pass up? It needs to go into a locked box in the freezer until you’re going to use it. The kids get used to the damp sticky wrappers.

  12. ksbeth says:

    like the box of weight watcher’s ice cream sandwiches. one is really not too bad for you, which leads to two, then a box and then you are worse of than when you started. really taste the best when eating them and sitting on the couch watching workout videos.

  13. Snoring Dog Studio says:

    My happiest day was the day scientists discovered the health benefits of dark chocolate. I think of it now as “taking my vitamins.” Except I say “vitamins” the British way, which makes it seem even more healthy to suck down a bar of dark chocolate. I’m not forgoing one of life’s little pleasures. No way.

  14. breezyk says:

    Omg I have NO self control with mini chocolate bars. I just discovered a coworker has a full drawer of them at his desk (like I’m talking HUNDREDS), including American mini chocolate bars!! Ones I have never seen before in mini form like almond joys, milk duds and whoppers. Whoppers! Little tiny sleeves with three delectable little bite sized treats inside! How can such a magical thing be bad for you? God help me.

    • rossmurray1 says:

      One of the perks of living on the border: Aero bars this side, 100 Grand bars that. Sometimes the kids over here get lucky at Halloween if the house has been shopping State-side. And, of course, my youngest daughter can’t eat chocolate, sooooooo…..

  15. List of X says:

    I heard that chocolate increases your willpower. If you eat a pound of chocolate in an hour, you’ll gain enough willpower to avoid chocolate for the rest of the day.

  16. JC says:

    My husband has a coffee crunch in the fridge right now that I’m not allowed to touch. I don’t even like coffee crunches that much, but I want it more than anything else in the pantry right now.

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