Sunday, April 12, 2009

Oh, the peepmanity!

Published April 12, 2009
St. George Spectrum & Daily News

Happy Easter, everyone! No doubt you’re enjoying the holiday traditions, watching the kids or the grandkids hunt for painted eggs, preparing a nice Easter feast for your families, and biting the heads off defenseless little baby chickens before devouring their bodies whole.

It’s a sad commentary on the state of our society, I know.

If you’re confused, thinking you’ve never in your life treated a baby chicken this way, just take a look at your Easter treats and you’ll realize to what I am referring. They’re little. They’re yellow. They’re “Everybody’s favorite candy!” according to one gushing website. You’ve found them by now. I’m talking about Peeps.

I have to say it. I don’t get Peeps. I get that they’re made of marshmallows and that a purported 700 million of them are eaten every year in the U.S. I just don’t get why. When I look at a package of Peeps, I don’t immediately think, “Oooh! A delectable treat just for me to enjoy!” I usually make the sign of the cross with my fingers and then pray for the redemption of all humankind.

To me, Peeps are an example of all that’s wrong in the world. They say they’re candy, yet they resemble no candy I’d be willing to eat: Dishonesty! They’re gobbled up by hordes of people who descend on stores every Easter and throw their money around: Runaway consumerism! Though they pretend to be symbols of Easter, a Christian holiday, they’re actually pagan symbols of fertility: Um…Overpopulation?

Learning a little of their history didn’t help my feelings at all. Peeps came out of the “Just Born” candy shop, run by Sam Born, who started his illustrious career making chocolates in France. CHOCOLATES! Am I the only one who can’t wrap my mind around someone making something as wholesome and pure and spiritually uplifting as chocolate losing his mind, selling his soul to the marshmallow devil, and producing Peeps as a result?

Apparently, I’m not. In my online travels today, I found You read that right: ONE HUNDRED ways to kill a peep. The creator of this blog, obviously a Peep-hating person after my own heart, posts lovely little pictures sent in by Peep-hating readers that feature the many ways in which a Peep might die. This blog is not alone in its Peepicidal tendencies. I found many similar sites devoted to chronicling the gruesome deaths of Peeps the world over.

My personal favorite shot involves an unfortunate Peep that has overdosed on Smarties, another candy I just don’t understand. If this sad little Peep were then crushed by an avalanche of Butterfingers and Tootsie Rolls, the picture would truly be complete.

I know there are people reading this who love these little Easter treats, their blobby bodies and vacant stares notwithstanding. My dear friend, Kari, is a fervent Peep supporter. I believe I actually sent her a box through the mail one year when she was having a rough time and needed a pick-me-up. I don’t expect everyone to share my sentiments. I just want to put them out there for all the people who do.

Someday, I will make peace with the fact that I live in a world in which candy makers can take something as innocuous as a fluffy, little marshmallow and turn it into something as vile as a Peep. Since I’ve managed to find happiness in a world filled with terrorism, genocide, and rap music, I’m sure I can overcome the proliferation of Peeps.

Hmmmm…Peeps killed by rap singing terrorists…that’s good.