Today was a sad day. When I arrived at work, I was greeted by an empty candy dish. And it may be a long time before it is refilled. I’ve sort of become the candy stop for my co-workers. It all started back in December, when I first started working there. I bought some treats, and put them in a dish on my desk to share. It started with some sort of Christmas candies, which were soon replaced by Valentines Day conversation hearts. I somehow missed out on the St. Patty’s Day gold coins, but I didn’t miss the Easter Parade of jelly beans, bunnies, and eggs. And then, it was over. The last two jelly beans sat in the dish for several days, until someone finally put them out of their misery and ended it.
That empty dish led to some discussion at work about the candy cycle. We realized that there won’t be much in the way of candy for several months to come. The year unfolds with a fairly steady stream of holiday candies. January is set aside to get over the sugar shock of Christmas, but February brings conversation hearts and boxes of chocolates. March supplies us with Leprechaun loot. April sends the Easter Bunny, complete with baskets of goodies.
Then, in May, the candy market dries up. Mother’s Day suggests flowers, or a nice vacuum cleaner, rather than candy. June brings us Father’s Day, which usually revolves around after-shave, ties, fishing gear, and lawn mowers, but no candy. The 4th of July is all about fire crackers and hot dogs, and the occasional parade, but no candy that represents the holiday. August offers us nothing in the way of a holiday at all. Labor Day in September is parade time again, and candy is thrown, but the store shelves are not filled with Labor Day-specific treats. It’s more about the picnic foods, like hot dogs, potato salad and watermelon, but not candy.
And then, watch out! Halloween candy hits the shelves as early as August in some areas! This is a big one, and stores are stocked with all manner of miniature candies, individually wrapped, for those trick-or-treaters. And although November doesn’t really offer us a candy-centered holiday (just turkey and all the fixins, and pie), we are usually still eating the leftover Halloween candy right up until the Christmas candy hits the shelves. Enter chocolate Santas, candy canes, and all the rest.
I had to wonder how each holiday got its traditional treats associated with it, or not. I realize that most of the seasonal candies have very little to do with the holiday itself. Those marketing gurus just waved their magic wands and made candies to fit the holidays. But why did they miss the mark on some of the holidays? Why not some Father’s Day confection? Perhaps a nice tie made of licorice? Or maybe some candy fire crackers for the 4th of July? Wouldn’t Pop Rocks be sort of fitting for that? And what about poor August…no holiday, and certainly no candy. Someone needs to look into that.