Circus Peanuts

Circus Peanuts candy 05-05-2022

I was passing the candy shelves in Buchheit’s the other night when a bag of orange somethings called out my name.

It triggered an immediate memory.

When I was about two years old, Dad must have been building a road around Poplar Bluff, which meant we were living in the trailer he pulled from job to job.

Mother came back from shopping all excited because she had won a full grocery cart of goodies in some kind of store promotion. The only thing I can remember about the contents was a cellophane package of something that looked like peanuts, was a color of orange not found in nature, and tasted vaguely like bananas.

That could have very well been the last time I ate one.

I didn’t need a lifetime supply

Back to Buchheit’s: the bag I spotted contained a lifetime supply of the marshmallow goodies, and cost way more than I wanted to invest in a trip down memory lane.

On a subsequent pass, though, I spotted a smaller bag that was priced low enough that it was worth an experiment. I tore it open and was immediately transported back to my childhood.

I put some samples in plastic bags and went making the rounds of Cape friends and relatives (full disclosure: it only took two bags). They too, allowed as how  they still tasted and smelled the same as the ones they had wrestled away from dinosaurs in their childhoods.

What’s the story about these things?

Circus Peanuts candy 05-05-2022

Google says that circus peanuts are an American peanut-shaped marshmallow candy that date back to the 19th century, when they were one of a large variety of unwrapped “penny candy” sold in retail outlets like five-and-dime stores.

As of the 2010s, the most familiar variety of mass-produced circus peanuts is orange-colored and flavored with an artificial banana flavor

Confectioners originally distributed an orange-flavored variety that was only available seasonally due to a lack of packaging capable of preserving the candy. In the 1940s, circus peanuts became one of the many candies to become available year-round owing to the industrial proliferation of cellophane packaging.

You have to draw the line somewhere

My memory lane hits a dead end before it gets to Candy Corn Blvd. I don’t care to revisit some things.

 

 

Warm Ears and Christmas Lights

Robin Hirsh and Mark Steinhoff - STL - 10-25-2009I had two errands to run that took me past North County Park after dark: I wanted a Wib’s BBQ fix, and I needed to return a cap to Buchheit.

When I was in Cape in 2009, I bought a super cap with fold-down ear flaps that did a great job of keeping my Florida ears from falling off in the cold. Unfortunately, I forgot to pack it, so I went in search for a replacement. Of course, my old faithful wasn’t in stock, and I wasn’t crazy about this year’s model, but it was better than blue ears. When I called Wife Lila last night, she said it was still hanging on the hat rack in the living room, so she’d mail it to MO, letting me return the not-quite-right model..

I liked the original cap well enough to buy one for Brother Mark. Here he and Future Wife Robin posed with the caps when they were new (the caps, not Mark and Robin). I think the classy way he wore it was what tipped the scales to get her to say “yes.”

The park was all lit up

North County Park Christmas Lights 12-01-2015Anyway, to get to the point of the post: when I passed the park Tuesday night, it was all lit up. If some of the pictures are confusing (like this one), it’s because I couldn’t resist shooting the reflections on a lake that was a smooth as a newborn baby’s butt.

For comparison, here’s what it looked like in 2011 (the post has a bunch of links to other Christmas posts, too).

Decoration photo gallery

Click on any photo to make it larger, then use your arrow keys to move around. (If you are wondering what the sign that says “P ACE” means, it means that the “E” that would make it spell “PEACE” isn’t working.)

I hate to keep mentioning it, but don’t forget the yellow DONATE button.

Copyright © Ken Steinhoff. All rights reserved.