Lesson #1: Don’t Buy Fudge
The first step in not eating fudge is to not buy fudge. When you visit a quaint beach town, where every other store for 38 blocks sells no less than 22 varieties of hand-made fudge, do not go in the store. Don’t go into the store under the pretense of only buying salt water taffy. The salt water taffy is merely and instrument used to get you to buy fudge. Do not fall for it.
If you must go in the store because, for example, your husband is in there picking out the wrong flavors of taffy, or because you think you spotted a rice cake and just want to check it out, stay away from the fudge counter.
Head to the back of the store where they stash the nasty candies with names like toxic waste, cry baby, viper blast, dragon fire, and atomic fizzion. Feign interest in the floor tiles or inspect the store front windows for fingerprints. Do not look at the front of the store near the cash register where the spacious glass case houses 22 varieties of fudge, displayed in large, pan-shaped chunks.
If your husband left his wallet in the car and needs you to pay for the taffy and you place yourself, through no fault of your own, with in sniffing range of the 22 varieties of fudge, breathe through your mouth until you can safely exit the store. Do not, under any circumstances, look at the fudge.
Except of course you might happen to notice a particularly curious bit of fudge, creamy brown with orange swirls running through it. “What in the world is that?” you ask yourself. You’ve seen fudge with M&M’s, rocky road fudge, fudge with green mint swirls and even white chocolate caramel swirl fudge. This orange swirl fudge is simply a mystery. Whatever you do, do not approach the fudge to get a closer look.
If you are like most people who don’t eat fudge, you will probably need to find out what kind of fudge this is, simply to satisfy your curiosity; for research, of course. Once you know what new flavor has been added to the old line up of fudge stand-bys, you will be able to leave the store and not think about fudge for the rest of the day. So, peek if you must, at the little tag stuck into the fudge with a little plastic pick, but do not linger.
When the fudge peddler offers you a free sample of the fudge you’ve been drooling over, whatever you do, do not accept. (And why were you drooling in the first place? It was supposed to be a quick peek, no time for drooling!)
If you must, fake a foreign accent or total ignorance of the English language to quickly escape the free-fudge-sample-pusher and run for the door. Do not try to explain that you really shouldn’t, that you don’t care for fudge and that you were just curious. Don’t smell the little sliver of fudge on a toothpick, don’t look at it, and for heaven’s sake, don’t take it. Just back away, slowly and deliberately, then turn and run.
If you linger too long, you might realize the toothpicked, free fudge sample is really just a wafer-thin sliver. It’s nothing, really, compared to that giant pan shaped block mocking you under the glass. The fudge man probably can not put the free sample back with the rest of the fudge now that it’s been severed from its block. He will just have to throw it away. You may as well take it and complete your fudge research by tasting the little bit of fudgy goodness.
You might realize all these things and more, but they will be misguided rationalizations. Do not take the free sample.
The free sample tastes delicious of course. We all knew you’d eat it. Just get it over with and put as much distance between you and the fudge as soon as possible. Ignore the way the creamy fudge feels in your mouth. Pay no attention to the endorphins that are being released in your body: you’re not happy, it’s just chocolate! And please, please don’t take notice of the multi-sized boxes available to take fudge home in.
Of course you would never buy the box that holds 5 hunks of fudge and a 6th hunk for free. It’s $10 after all and someone who spends that much on fudge clearly has a fudge problem. The $5 box may not be as good of a deal, but it holds fewer hunks of fudge that you will not be eating.
Buy the small box of fudge, not for you, of course, and leave the store while you still have a shred of dignity.
Next Week, Lesson #2: How to Hide Your Fudge