This past week, I rediscovered the love of my life — Hot Tamales cinnamon candies.
My affinity for this candy can began at a young age. I remember going to UNK Loper basketball games with my family when I was a kid and buying Hot Tamales from the concession stand. I could barely eat two before my mouth was on fire, but that didn’t matter. I was hooked.
Why do I love them so? Words can’t describe it, but that has never stopped me before. I have always loved cinnamon gum, especially Big Red, which I would always chew at my Grandma’s house. I am not necessarily a fan of super spicy foods. For example, I do not like actual hot tamales, a traditional Mexican pork-based dish. There is just something about those spicy little nuggets of candy that are addicting. If you eat one, you have to eat another one to quell the fire building in your mouth. Then, before you know it, you have eaten the entire box. Whoops!
I feel like I am born again, baptized into the spicy devotion that comes with each and every box of chewy capsules. This week, I purchased four boxes. Yes, my friends, four. I have fallen hard for the red candies. If you look at my hands, you will see that I am quite literally red-handed, due to the red dyes number 3 and 40 rubbing off onto my fingers. I am not ashamed; I am simply addicted.
There are many philosophical nuances behind Hot Tamales. Let me try to explain. Mike & Ike‘s are delicious. However, they have one downfall— diversity. While I believe diversity is good in daily life, it is not good in candy. You can never share a box of Mike and Ike’s. People have their favorite flavors. They will pick through the box and touch your candy with their grubby fingers. THIS IS NOT ACCEPTABLE. If you are offered candy, you should graciously accept whatever combination of colors the candy gods deposit into your hand. This is why Hot Tamales are better. They have one flavor. You either like them or you don’t. (If you don’t like Hot Tamales and have read this far into this post, I applaud you yet question your taste buds.) People take them.
Nothing builds friendships and community like a box of Hot Tamales. For above-mentioned reasons, you don’t have to be selective with who you offer your candy to, as nobody will paw through the box. Also, you will reach a point where your tongue will be overwhelmed and you simply cannot stand to eat another one. This is when you turn to the person next to you and shake the box while asking “Want one?” If they are a good and decent person, they will probably say yes. Then you will strike up a conversation, bonding over one of life’s greatest treats.
As if this weren’t enough to convince you of the amazing qualities of my favorite candy, the hard facts can’t be overlooked. According to the Just Born candies website, Hot Tamales are the #1 sugar cinnamon candy brand in the U.S. While I can’t currently think of another sugar cinnamon candy, this statistic shows that the people want, need and demand Hot Tamales. Hot Tamales are a vegan food and have seven calories a piece. They are also fat free!
Cinnamon is good for your body, ’tis true! It inhibits tumor growth, according to this study done on lab rats. Eat up!
If you see me around campus this week, I will probably be carrying a box of Hot Tamales. Please don’t judge my love. I can’t help it. I’m hooked, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
- My Top 5 Guilty Pleasures (missriki.com)