The end of Twinkies?

At last, people begin to understand. It’s not just some abstract end of the world. It’s the end of Wonder Bread. It’s the end of Ding Dongs. It’s the end of Twinkies. Hostess Brands Inc. have shut all their factories. Many thousands of employees who decided to strike a company that had twice filed for Chapter Eleven protection also begin to understand. They may now wave their little signs in perpetuity.

Except, not so fast. Those bidding auction-room prices on eBay for “the last box of Twinkies” may soon find that the liquidators have sold the brands, together with the industrial recipes. Twinkies may rise again. Maybe they’ll start making them in China. They are imperishable after all. One could ship them from anywhere.

One hardly knows what to think. Up here in the High Doganate, we are shockingly indifferent to the fate of Twinkies. Our view was that a person who puts that in his mouth needs the rest of his head examined. But not by us. We are snooty and elitist up here. By the standards of the Greater Parkdale Area we probably count as a foodie. We did eat a Twinkie once, or something very similar; just as we once tried Beondegi, the popular Korean snack, made from steamed silkworm pupae (and not from maggots as commonly supposed). You only live once, and not long at that, as the philosophers have observed. In neither case did we finish the serving. Given starvation, and a choice only between the two — between a tin of Beondegi and a box of Twinkies — well, we preferred the seasoning of the silkworm pupae.

But we are not Mayor Bloomberg. We wouldn’t try to discourage members of the urban proletariat from buying Twinkies, or soda pop in gallon jugs, or any of the other products of post-modern capitalism. We would drop the ridiculous health messages he and his ilk now propose to stipulate. We have never liked half measures.

No, we would do nothing of the kind. At least, not until we have the vice squads in place for the Aesthetic Division of our new “Rapid Reactionary” model police. This paramilitary force, which we have often imagined, would conduct dawn raids on the supermarkets, removing from the shelves everything deemed ugly, purely on the basis of external packaging. Even the milk would go, if our cops found it being sold in these 1.33-litre plastic “bladder bags.” Indeed, anything sorted into metric portions would be a candidate for our Lists.

We have never felt comfortable telling people how to live. Not when we can reduce their options by direct action.