Thursday, July 17, 2008

Do It Yourself Paranoia: Why Is The Jolly Rancher So Damned Jolly, Really?

It's easy to be paranoid. Most people are, to one degree or another. The Church Of Mothra... like all good belief systems... is here to relieve you of your unfocused, ill-defined suspicions and replace them with very specific ones. Today's installment: what horrors lurk within Jolly Rancher candies?

I've been disturbed by this for a while. Not only do Jolly Ranchers have an uncanny ability to spot-weld themselves to my fillings, they also disturb my mind. Consider:

1) They are fruit flavoured... not meat flavoured. Fruit is grown in an orchard. Meat animals are raised on a ranch. The kind of place run by a rancher.

2) Why would someone... namely, a rancher... be so jolly if he's apparently in the wrong line of work?

3) Why do I need pliers to get one of these things off my fillings?

The truth... as is so often the case... could be far more horrifying than you might think.

The ingredients of a Jolly Rancher are, in order: Corn Syrup, Sugar, Butter, Citric or Malic Acid, Salt, Glycerin, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Modified Concentrated Butter Flavor, Lecithin, Artificial Colors (FDC Yellow #5, FDC Yellow #6).

Hmm. Glycerin. Better known among your chemist buddies as "glycerol." It's a thick gooey clear fluid with a lot of uses, like soap, nitroglycerin, toothpaste, and (in suppository form) makes a nice laxative. It can be made from plants. Often as not though... it's made from animals. And according to a respected source of science information, The Hare Krishnas, the source of the glycerol in Jolly Ranchers is... pork.

Never mind the millions of Jews and Muslims and vegetarians who have unwittingly enjoyed pork because of this. Pigs aren't raised on a ranch, either. That's for cows. Pigs are raised on a farm.

So... why is this Rancher so Jolly? Could it be because he's found a way to profitably dispose of those who would actively voice dissent against The System?

Maybe he's laughing at you, because you're next.

For further details, please refer to the 1980 classic horror film "Motel Hell," featuring the tag line '"IT TAKES ALL KINDS OF CRITTERS TO MAKE FARMER VINCENT'S FRITTERS."

You've been warned.

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