SICK OF READING about vegetables? Tell me about it! Thankfully, "vegetable" can describe everything from your favorite, sun-kissed leafy greens to your great-aunt, rotting in a retirement home, forgotten by everyone who ever loved her. So in the interest of giving you, our valued reader, a break from the Mercury's insufferable vegetable infatuation, I volunteered to review a selection of fine, vegetable-inspired sweets—to remind us that eating vegetables can be fun! At least, that was the idea. In practice, it turned out to be one of the worst ideas I've ever had, and now I have diabetes.
1. Lester's Fixins Sweet Corn Soda—Boasting a tangy bouquet redolent of canned corn, and sparkling with a delicate amber light that recalls pungent morning urine, Lester's Fixins Sweet Corn Soda is fucking disgusting. Do not drink or smell it under any circumstances. Lester's Fixins Sweet Corn Soda tastes like carbonated creamed corn. It also gives you corn burps. Lester is a war criminal and a pedophile.
2. Pocky Midi—Pocky, the candy beloved by lonely anime cosplayers everywhere, has a green kind! Apparently! Why is it green? Well, don't look to the packaging for any help, given that the only words in English are "chocolate," "12 sticks," and "Share happiness!" Still, I figured green = vegetable, so I put it in my mouth! Turns out: green tea! I did not like it, and spat it out, and threw away the box, because having the word "chocolate" on it was a goddamn lie. Have at it, Sailor Moons. Share happiness.
3. Gummi Pizza—Is Congress still insisting pizza counts as a vegetable for school lunches? For the sake of this blurb, let's pretend they are. This faux-Italian treat is "manufactured by MEDERER GROUP," a "German wholly owned enterprise," and "Made in China." As for its taste, this product of inspiring multinational cooperation is basically like cramming warm Play-Doh into your mouth. One of its ingredients is beeswax.
4. Sour Patch Kids—If they're grown in patches, they must be a vegetable! I ate a whole package of these little fuckers, which is kind of crazy: The one candy on this list that was chemically engineered to taste horrible somehow tasted less horrible than everything else.
5. Hot Tamales—Ay yi yi! Made with corn (vegetable!) and chilies (vegetable!), the tamale is los muy caliente sombrero of Mexican cuisine. [Note to editors: "GUYS IS THIS TOO RACIST?" Editors: "Yes, and you're fired."] Hot Tamales taste absolutely nothing like tamales. They're just chewy cinnamon pellets. Like candy corn or Boston Baked Beans, these seem like candy that old-timey children would have liked because they were too stupid or lead-poisoned to know better.
6. Peanuts That Appear to Be Dipped in Some Kind of Orange Plastic—Here's something weird: When you Google "Are nuts a vegetable," the first auto-complete search Google suggests is "are corn nuts a vegetable." JESUS FUCKING CHRIST, AMERICA. But while we may never know if nuts are, in fact, vegetables, I picked these things out of a bulk bin, just in case. They are Butterfinger ripoffs. For shame.
7. Kasugai Melon Gummy—You can't argue with Kasugai Melon Gummy's bag (literally—it's a bag), which promises "a very juicy candy made with melon juice" and orders you to "Enjoy its exquisite melon taste." Sold! "The Japanese make the best gummy candies!" the guy at the candy shop promised me. And I'll be goddamned! Candyman was right! Suck a dick, Sweden! Wait. Melons... melons are not vegetables. Shit.
8. Idaho Spud—I went to college in Idaho, and at basketball game halftimes, cheerleaders would throw Idaho Spuds ("the candy bar that makes Idaho famous") into the crowd—at which point, the crowd would throw them back. If you've ever tried an Idaho Spud, you know why: A chocolate, potato-shaped blob speckled with coconut shavings that can only be described as "itchy," the "spud" is filled with a dark gray ooze that looks infected. It should be a federal crime to transport Idaho Spuds across state borders.
9. Wasabi Peas—Most people eat candy to make themselves feel better—to forget, for a brief, sweet moment, that they have dead-end jobs and that they'll inevitably die alone. Wasabi peas, on the other hand, are eaten by masochists who want to punish themselves for having dead-end jobs and dying alone. Next time you see someone eating wasabi peas, give them a warm hug—maybe, just maybe, you'll make their day a little better. BUT DO NOT LET THEM FEED YOU ANY WASABI PEAS