The obligatory disclaimer: I am not an employee of Hostess, nor am I paid by them either with money or products. I do not know the current whereabouts of Twinkie The Kid, and if I did, I wouldn't tell you.
An appropriate amount of time has passed. There has been time to grieve. To mourn the loss of an old friend. Just shy of its 80th birthday, Twinkie succumbed after a long and debilitating illness.
Having written a heartfelt tribute to Twinkies in the past, I feel that it is the proper time to share some thoughts about how to deal with a Twinkieless world.
To refresh the memories of the two or three people who actually took the time to read my Twinkie blog, I wrote one called Tribute To Twinkies. It referenced the health concerns my doctor had about my diet, and somehow morphed into a tribute to the tasty little treats, including fun facts, and a complete history of the Twinkie.
So, having been banned from Twinkies by my wonderful doctor, who is kindhearted in general, but ruthless as far as my health is concerned, I feel like I am the perfect person to help those trying to kick Twinkies cold turkey.
Having had to quit smoking as well as giving up my Twinkies (and all other fun foods) I can definitely tell you that Twinkies are darn near as hard to give up as smoking. To give them up simultaneously is next to impossible, and I do not recommend such a course of action without constant medical observation.
I gave up Twinkies long before I quit smoking, and yes, there were times that I replaced a Twinkie with a cigarette. I am not advocating it, but rather being honest.
Oh heck, as long as I am being honest, I will admit that right before Hostess went bankrupt, Kroger started carrying Chocolate Creme Twinkies, and well, I had never tried one, and um, they were on sale 2/$5.00, and well, I kind of bought a box.
I bought a box, and I rationalized it by telling myself that I had never tried them, and I probably wouldn't like them, as I am old school, and usually resist change. I convinced myself that they would be so bad that it would actually reinforce my vow to never eat Twinkies again. It made perfect sense at the time, and did I tell you that they were on sale 2/&5.00?
Well I am both proud, and ashamed to admit that the Chocolate Creme Twinkie were delish! I am proud to say that Hostess lived up to their reputation of delivering taste to the buds, but I am more than a little ashamed to admit that I knew deep down that they would be tasty. I rationalized to myself that they would be bad just to give myself an excuse to fall off the wagon. I knew darn well they'd be awesome!
So I got home with my 2/$5.00 box of Twinkies, poured a glass of 2% milk, and went to town. Eight Twinkies in, I get a knock at the door. Without thinking, I opened the door, and it was my friend John McKay. Well, I let him in, and we started chatting by the door, and then I noticed him glancing at the Twinkie box on my counter.
He looked at the box, then he looked back at me, then back at the box, with the barest trace of a smile on his face. I wiped a bit of chocolate creme from my face, and I knew that the jig was up. If I had only looked through the peephole in my door before I had opened it.
You see, John knows of my battle with Twinkies. He was one of the two or three people that had actually read my Twinkie blog. He knew what the score was, and now he knew that I had relapsed.
I did the only thing I could do, I handed him my remaining two Twinkies, with some awkward excuse about wanting to try them just once, and told him that they were on sale 2/$5.00. Or something like that.
He didn't have to take them, but he did. Not only did he take them, but he did it with not a smile, but a sneer on his face. Maybe a smirk, I don't know, my vision was kind of blurry at that particular moment.
Before you all think John is guiltless in the matter, I believe the reason he stopped by was to give me a package of his new culinary discovery, which was Johnsonville Bacon Jerky, so he is no angel.
In the end, he left, and I hit the couch, and washed down my Chocolate Creme Twinkies with a package of Bacon Jerky. I felt dirty.
I awoke the next morning feeling the guilt and embarrassment, and I made a promise to myself to redouble my efforts. I did not touch another Twinkie from that point on. I stayed away from Krogers for the duration of the sale, but I did however make a trip to the Dollar Tree, and picked up a package of bacon jerky for my friend John. I figured I owed him.
I may have purchased a package or three for myself as well, OK five. They were only a dollar a pack! Who knew you could buy bacon jerky at a dollar store? That is a dangerous thing for me. Another place I have to avoid. Story of my life.
In the end, I have been left with a question that will probably haunt me for the rest of my life: If I had known that Hostess was going to go bankrupt, would I have given my last two Twinkies to John McKay? I seriously lose sleep over that decision.
I am now getting better about having resentments towards Mr. McKay for getting my last two Twinkies. Every time I start to resent him, I remind myself that he showed up with bacon jerky for me, so how can I be mad?
I also have some resentment for folks that had to give up Twinkies because the company went bankrupt.
I did it the hard way! I had to walk by fully stocked displays of them everytime I went to the store. It is much easier to get over the Twinkie habit when you are not faced with them each and every single time you walk into a store.
I won't lie, I still look at the spot where they used to be at my local CVS. They filled the shelf with holiday stuff, but on the top shelf there are still Hostess Fruitcakes. Fruitcakes! They were apparently the only things that didn't sell out within minutes of the bankruptcy announcement. Imagine that. Fruitcakes didn't sell out. Go figure.
I had never heard of Hostess Fruitcakes. Fruitcakes are something you buy for somebody you don't like for Christmas. Even I could not "rationalize" buying a fruitcake, even if it was made by Hostess. I took it as a slap in my face, shook my head, and walked out the door with my stupid granola bar. I don't even know what granola is. All I know is that my ruthless doctor has ok'd them. WITH MODERATION. I hate the word moderation.
Oh well, my cholesterol level today is now closer to two digits than it is to four digits, so there is that I guess.
To summarize, I guess the only advice I have for those trying to get over their Twinkie habit is this.
Don't replace Twinkies with cigarettes. Your doctor will make you quit those too.
Don't replace Twinkies with beer. If you do, though, don't drive.
Don't replace Twinkies with medical Marijuana. For all the obvious reasons.
Don't replace Twinkies with Little Debbies. It's like replacing a Corvette with an Escort.
If you are really having a hard time, eat a Granola Bar, wash it down with a glass of Crystal Light, and call my wonderful doctor for help on her 24 hour hotline: 1-800-RUTHLESS...