Sweet Considerations Considering Sweets

From spring of 2003 until my graduation in May 2006, I wrote many articles for several sections of my college newspaper, the Los Angeles Loyolan. Here's one of my articles from the now-defunct humor section, Tangent.
Sweet Considerations Considering Sweets

Mark J. Lehman
Managing Editor

Originally Published: Tuesday, April 4, 2006

I remember it well. It was a Saturday. No, a Sunday. The sun was just setting over the horizon, its last rays unwilling to extinguish as they singed the edges of the impending night sky. This type of cosmic battle always stirs deep within my soul a desire to know the world more fully and to understand it more completely, and this desire drives me to ponder the deeper questions that man may never answer but will continually strive to understand.

What is my purpose? Is there life after death? What should I eat for dinner this evening?

But on this fine April evening, a more distressing thought kept me perplexed; nay, it gnawed at my very soul like some carnivorous hamsters on a spiritual feeding frenzy.

What is a Tootsie Roll?

This question did not involve the simple answer of identifying Tootsie Rolls as such. From living on this planet for a number of years and participating in my fair share of trick-or-treating events, I'm fairly certain I am able to differentiate between a Tootsie Roll and inferior candies such as Mr. Goodbar or Twix. Yes, despite the catchy 80s commercial jingle, I know that we live not in an ideal world and thus, "Whatever it is I think I see" most definitely does NOT "become a Tootsie Roll to me."

Rather, the mystifying question that plagued me dealt more with the consistency and genetic makeup of the Tootsie Roll.

Is it chocolate? Is it taffy? Is it both? Is it neither? What precisely is "tootsie," and what ingenious mastermind first opted to craft this strange blend into roll form?

These are the types of dilemmas that generate the existential crises which make up the very fabric of what compels social change and reform for the good of all humanity. And yet, these specific questions, it seems, can only be answered in the simple terms of the infamous ad campaign by Tootsie Roll's bastard cousin, Tootsie Pop-namely, "The world may never know."
[via Los Angeles Loyolan: http://www.laloyolan.com/2.4416/1.398347]
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