This post has nothing at all to do with Pop Tarts. I just put the photo out on Instagram and Facebook so it was handy to use. Pardon the deceptive lead-in but I had no photos of Root Beer Barrels to use. I could have Googled for one, but it’s nearly dinner time…and my time is valuable.
In the distant years of my past life, back in 1956 for instance, I would pay 25 cents for a ticket to the matinée at the Tioga Theater in Owego, NY. This stopped a year or two later when my mother (bless her heart) enrolled me in piano lessons that began at 2:00 pm…just down Main Street from the theater…where all my friends were about to enjoy a Hopalong Cassidy triple feature and at least a dozen Disney cartoons.
But, when I went to the matinée, my favorite treat was a 5 cent box of Root Beer Barrels. You can still buy these…I think.
Those little brown nuggets of sugar and flavor were pure ambrosia to me.
Until I started to go to the dentist, Dr. Lee, whose office was about halfway from St. Patrick’s School (where I was in elementary school) to what was then Harvey’s Grocery Store (later to become Craig Phelps’ super popular “Everybody’s Country Store”).
Well, to make a very long story a little shorter, I started getting childhood cavities (I’m not sure they flouridated the water then.)
Dr. Lee didn’t believe in Novocaine. I suffered the typical pains of a child of the 50’s in the dentist chair.
So, recently, I had two extractions at Mount Sinai Hospital here in NYC. I began to reflect how many times I had those original cavities filled and refilled. It must have been quite a few because I’m still getting cavities redone…and I haven’t had a Root Beer Barrel in decades.
I would estimate that my dental care has cost me or my insurance company several thousand dollars to repair the damages caused by a 5 cent box of little hard candies.
I no longer eat hard candy…it might chip a tooth. I’m going over to Godiva’s.
Can’t hurt at this point in my life. But I miss those little chunks of cheap candy and the flavor bursts of Root Beer.
I might even try a Pop Tart.