CLOSE
Original image

"Tweet Me," "Mommy Issues" and More Offbeat Valentine's Day Candy Hearts

Original image

If you're a fan of chalky candy (I am!), you've probably noticed that Necco's Sweethearts Conversation Hearts have gotten a bit of an overhaul in the past couple of years. Not only are the flavors different, to the chagrin of many, but the sayings have joined the rest of us in the 21st century as well.

It's not the first time the conversation has changed. In the mid-'90s, the basic Sweethearts were given a small update to get rid of some of the outdated sayings, but replacement gems like “Fax Me” and “Beep Me” quickly became obsolete again. Then, throughout the naughts, Necco added a handful of themed sayings every year. For example, 2009 was a cooking theme, which resulted in sayings such as "Top Chef" and "Table 4 Two." The hearts got a total overhaul in 2010 when Necco let candy connoisseurs vote on 10 new sayings for the first time in the company's history. The winners included “Tweet Me” and “Text Me,” among others that aren’t technology-oriented.

If Tweeting and texting don't trip your trigger, though, here are a few more interesting sayings from a post that originally ran last Valentine's Day.

1. “Forks.” Before you start wondering why Necco has decided to pay tribute to utensils, you should know that this one is from the Twilight-themed Conversation Hearts that hit stores in 2009. In case you’re not a Twi-hard, Forks is the name of the town where most of the action takes place.

2. “Mommy Issues.” This one comes to you from BitterSweets, a line of candy that includes themes such as Dumped, Dejected, Dysfunctional. Other awesome sayings include “U left seat up,” “Aging Poorly,” and “Pwned! Meh.”

3. “Nice t***.” Whoops.

What was probably a joke by a bored Brach’s assembly line employee ended up being not so funny when a 12-year-old California girl found it in her bag of candy in 2011. Check out a picture of the offending confection at Geekologie.

4. “Please send a lock of your hair by return mail.” Back in the early days of what were then called “Motto Hearts,” the concept was a bit different – instead of being printed right on the candy, candy makers did it up fortune-cookie style by putting slips of paper inside of little crispy candies. And the shapes weren’t just restricted to hearts – others included watches, baseballs and envelopes.

5. “Married in Pink, He will take to drink.” Although Necco started using vegetable coloring and a stamp to print sayings directly on the candy in the 1860s, they didn’t stop with the ridiculously long sayings. They were popular at weddings, hence the charming saying here. Others included the rhyme stretch “Married in satin, Love will not be lasting” and “Married in white, You have chosen right.”

6. “Stud Muffin.” Perhaps a bit risque for the children’s candy here in the U.S., “Stud muffin” is on the U.K. equivalent of Conversation Hearts, cleverly called Love Hearts.

7. “Let’s Read.” Nice, and to that I say, “Yes, please.” But is that really Valentine’s Day material? Is it a euphemism? Is that what the kids are saying these days?

8. “Get My Drift.” Necco added some weather-themed hearts in 2009 called “Love’s in the Forecast,” the pickup line your local weatherman uses when he goes out for drinks.

9. “You are gay.” It didn’t mean the same thing back when it was originally printed, which is why Necco pulled it from the ranks for being “outdated,” along with “Dig it.”

10. “Odyssey.” A bit cryptic for a piece of candy, perhaps, but it was part of the 2001 theme “Limitless love.” 2001… odyssey… get it?

Not a fan of the chalky taste of the candies, but like the way they look? DIYers have tons of ideas for you, including a wreath, framed art and jewelry.

Original image
iStock
arrow
Food
Let Alexa Help You Brine a Turkey This Thanksgiving
Original image
iStock

There’s a reason most of us only cook turkey once a year: The bird is notoriously easy to overcook. You could rely on gravy and cranberry sauce to salvage your dried-out turkey this Thanksgiving, or you could follow cooking advice from the experts.

Brining a turkey is the best way to guarantee it retains its moisture after hours in the oven. The process is also time-consuming, so do yourself a favor this year and let Alexa be your sous chef.

“Morton Brine Time” is a new skill from the cloud-based home assistant. If you own an Amazon Echo you can download it for free by going online or by asking Alexa to enable it. Once it’s set up, start asking Alexa for brining tips and step-by-step recipes customized to the size of your turkey. Two recipes were developed by Richard Blais, the celebrity chef and restaurateur best known for his Top Chef win and Food Network appearances.

Whether you go for a wet brine (soaking your turkey in water, salt, sugar, and spices) or a dry one (just salt and spices), the process isn’t as intimidating as it sounds. And the knowledge that your bird will come out succulent and juicy will definitely take some stress out of the holiday.

Original image
Rey Del Rio/Getty Images
arrow
Big Questions
Why Do the Lions and Cowboys Always Play on Thanksgiving?
Original image
Rey Del Rio/Getty Images

Because it's tradition! But how did this tradition begin?

Every year since 1934, the Detroit Lions have taken the field for a Thanksgiving game, no matter how bad their record has been. It all goes back to when the Lions were still a fairly young franchise. The team started in 1929 in Portsmouth, Ohio, as the Spartans. Portsmouth, while surely a lovely town, wasn't quite big enough to support a pro team in the young NFL. Detroit radio station owner George A. Richards bought the Spartans and moved the team to Detroit in 1934.

Although Richards's new squad was a solid team, they were playing second fiddle in Detroit to the Hank Greenberg-led Tigers, who had gone 101-53 to win the 1934 American League Pennant. In the early weeks of the 1934 season, the biggest crowd the Lions could draw for a game was a relatively paltry 15,000. Desperate for a marketing trick to get Detroit excited about its fledgling football franchise, Richards hit on the idea of playing a game on Thanksgiving. Since Richards's WJR was one of the bigger radio stations in the country, he had considerable clout with his network and convinced NBC to broadcast a Thanksgiving game on 94 stations nationwide.

The move worked brilliantly. The undefeated Chicago Bears rolled into town as defending NFL champions, and since the Lions had only one loss, the winner of the first Thanksgiving game would take the NFL's Western Division. The Lions not only sold out their 26,000-seat stadium, they also had to turn fans away at the gate. Even though the juggernaut Bears won that game, the tradition took hold, and the Lions have been playing on Thanksgiving ever since.

This year, the Lions host the Minnesota Vikings.

HOW 'BOUT THEM COWBOYS?


Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

The Cowboys, too, jumped on the opportunity to play on Thanksgiving as an extra little bump for their popularity. When the chance to take the field on Thanksgiving arose in 1966, it might not have been a huge benefit for the Cowboys. Sure, the Lions had filled their stadium for their Thanksgiving games, but that was no assurance that Texans would warm to holiday football so quickly.

Cowboys general manager Tex Schramm, though, was something of a marketing genius; among his other achievements was the creation of the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders.

Schramm saw the Thanksgiving Day game as a great way to get the team some national publicity even as it struggled under young head coach Tom Landry. Schramm signed the Cowboys up for the game even though the NFL was worried that the fans might just not show up—the league guaranteed the team a certain gate revenue in case nobody bought tickets. But the fans showed up in droves, and the team broke its attendance record as 80,259 crammed into the Cotton Bowl. The Cowboys beat the Cleveland Browns 26-14 that day, and a second Thanksgiving pigskin tradition caught hold. Since 1966, the Cowboys have missed having Thanksgiving games only twice.

Dallas will take on the Los Angeles Chargers on Thursday.

WHAT'S WITH THE NIGHT GAME?


Patrick Smith/Getty Images

In 2006, because 6-plus hours of holiday football was not sufficient, the NFL added a third game to the Thanksgiving lineup. This game is not assigned to a specific franchise—this year, the Washington Redskins will welcome the New York Giants.

Re-running this 2008 article a few days before the games is our Thanksgiving tradition.

SECTIONS

arrow
LIVE SMARTER
More from mental floss studios