Tag Archives: twinkies

Lame Adventure 288: Monday Morning’s Mayhem

Following the tradition of reliable unpleasantness that is every Monday morning, this past Monday was no different.  I was back at the workplace bleary-eyed and draggy-tailed doing what I had not anticipated doing first thing that particularly crummy Monday morning, struggling to open a carton of skim milk at my desk.  I had just poured the remainder of the previous week’s carton of milk-flavored water on my cereal, a cup of lightly sweetened organic flakes high in fiberboard.  I was intending to add additional milk but this week’s carton proposed battle.

Semi-milked cup of flakes.

It refused to follow the natural law of packaging* of opening to the simple touch.  It was clear to me that if this carton possessed a middle digit, it would be aimed in an upward direction at my grimacing face.

The Devil's Milk Carton ... possible horror film premise?

*I am purposely excluding products held hostage inside hard plastic stroke-inducing packaging and pills ensconced in allegedly child-proof bottles with adult-proof tops, more inventions courtesy of Satan.

The clock was ticking and the countdown was underway within the 90 second to two-minute window dividing crispy from soggy cereal.  As my blood pressure began rising to a life-threatening level, my colleague, (not) Under Ling (anymore), noticed my frustration as well as the fact that I was multi-tasking.  I was also photographing my struggle to open the obstinate carton.  Coincidentally, she had just finished reading my previous post about our unscientific experiment where we soaked Twinkies in Coca-Cola.  In a blasé tone she asked:

(not) Under Ling (anymore): Why are you photographing your milk cartons? [light bulb] Do you have Twinkies in there?

Twinkies on the (not) Under Ling (anymore) mind.

Me (through clenched teeth):  Tune into Wednesday’s Lame for the answer.

One of the minor mysteries of life is why is it that every so often, one draws the short straw and encounters that inner freshness bag that refuses to surrender, the potato chip bag sealed with glue so impenetrable, it requires the intervention of a scissors or a higher power (I’m thinking weapons grade explosive) to open, and lately, paper milk cartons closed tighter than a maximum security prison?

Twin cartons -- easy-to-open conformist on left, open-resistant mope on right.

Why is this necessary?  Is there something about operating a package sealing apparatus that is catnip to types suffering Borderline Personality Disorder looking for outlets for their hostility?  Where is the quality control to prevent defective product packaging?  At the very least consumers should be awarded complimentary Valium for brand loyalty when they’re forced to wrestle with these beasts.  By the time I was able to tear open that disagreeable milk carton, my cereal was reduced to soggy mush welcoming me to a new week at The Grind.

If this milk carton could talk, what might it say? Talking Milk Carton: F.U.

Lame Adventure 287: Playing with Food

I wear many hats in my department aside from my actual job as Minister of Tile Labeling.  I am also Minister of Printer Repair, Minister of Replacing the Copier Paper, Minister of Unjamming the Fax Machine, Minister of Kleenex and Tylenol Replacement, Minister of Paper Recycling, Minister of Picking Up Crap on the Rug that No One Else Will Do On Their Own Volition, to name just some of my many illustrious ministries.  In fairness to my sidekick, Greg, he is Minister of Band-aid replacement, Minister of Door Jamb Control, Minister of Freezer Defrosting and Minister of Coffee Brewing.  Recently, my superior, Elsbeth, has added Minister of Morale to my ever-growing list of ministries.  She has requested that as spiritual leader of our department I set forth an example of worker-pride that will have my colleagues, Greg and (not) Under Ling (anymore), merrily follow like lambs to the slaughter.  She did not suggest how I accomplish this feat so I have been left to my own devices.

Recently, Greg mentioned that he heard that if a steak were soaked in Coca-Cola, this elixir’s corrosive properties would cause the meat to dissolve.  This idea captivated (not) Under Ling (anymore).  In reality Coke has been trying for years to dispel this myth along with others and they address rumors about their product on their web site.  In 1950 a Cornell University professor, Clive McCay, testified before the U.S. House of Representatives that the combination of sugar and phosphoric acid in Coke destroys teeth.  He  observed that over the course of 48 hours, Coke can completely dissolve a tooth.  Coke countered that no one has ever held Coke in their mouth for 48 hours straight and that saliva neutralizes the acids in Coke and other acidic foods such as orange juice, something equally corrosive (just ask my gastroenterologist who will not let me and my weak guts anywhere near a three block radius of o.j.).  Back in the day, the president of Coca Cola, Bill Robinson, was so defensive about his product not promoting tooth decay in children he claimed, “The only way our product could harm children would be for a case of Coke to fall out a window and hit them.”

This conversation prompted Someone That Sounds a Lot Like Me to bleat:

Someone That Sounds a Lot Like Me:  What a ridiculous waste of a steak! Who thinks up this crap?

Undaunted, the discussion continued and someone, possibly Someone That Sounds a Lot Like Me, suggested:

Someone That Sounds a Lot Like Me:  It kind of makes you wonder what would happen if a Twinkie was soaked in Coke.

Greg:  Yeah!

(not) Under Ling (anymore):  We should do that and find out!

Seizing this opportunity to open the passageway to heightened morale I invested $3.59 in a package of Twinkies  and two cans of Coca Cola, one regular and the other, diet.

Ready, set ...

(not) Under Ling (anymore) immediately announced that she wanted to soak her Twinkie in regular Coke.  Always the gentleman, Greg announced:

Greg:  Go for it.

Go! (not) Under Ling (anymore) takes a Twinkie.

Illustrated below is a completely unscientific experiment conducted over the course of 6 ½ hours.  (not) Under Ling (anymore) chose to pour her can of regular Coke into the glass first.  Then, she dunked her Twinkie into the brew.

Regular Coke dunk.

We've got a floater!

Greg chose to place his Twinkie in the glass first and then he poured his can of Diet Coke over it, saturating it from the get-go.

Greg's Twinkie in glass.

Greg pouring his can of Diet Coke over his Twinkie.

Submerged Twinkie bobbed straight to the top, floating in Diet Coke.

Both Twinkies were immediately saturated with Coke to the touch, and Greg, who licked his finger announced (in response to the Twinkie in Diet Coke):

Greg:  Tastes like mint.

Me:  Really, not like chicken?

(not) Under Ling (anymore):  No way am I tasting that!

We changed locations should any uninvited guests enter the premises and ask  questions.

An hour later: Twinkie floating in regular Coke bubbling. Note: smells like a Twinkie and Coca-Cola.

An hour later: Twinkie floating in Diet Coke bubbling less. Note: smells like a Twinkie floating in a more chemically smelling Coke.

We resisted inhaling from this point on.

3 hours later: Twinkie in regular Coke leaking filling and sinking.

3 hours later: Twinkie in Diet Coke leaking filling and floating

4 hours later: semi-sunk Twinkie floating in regular Coke.

Side view partially dissolved Twinkie semi-sunk in battery acid, oops, regular Coke.

4 hours later: Twinkie in Diet Coke nesting in bed of leaked filling aka "gross root beer float stage".

6 1/2 hours later: Greg piercing surface of Twinkie semi-submerged in Diet Coke noting that the crust has hardened.

Greg blending mashed Twinkie in Diet Coke.

Greg blending Twinkie in regular Coke.

Chunks of Twinkie in regular Coke. The key word is, "Gnarly."

Results at day's end.

Overhead view with a little Diet Coke spillage.

In conclusion, both sponge cakes remained only partially submerged throughout the 6 1/2 hours, never entirely sinking until Greg mixed them at the end of the day.  This proved to us that they were more sponge than cake, but not nearly as appetizing as a sponge.  The end result is that worker curiosity was satisfied and  worker morale was easily uplifted an entire millimeter.