Some months ago I felt compelled to write a rare letter of dissatisfaction to the President of Hershey Chocolate:
Dear President of Hershey Canada
A few weeks ago, after a year of low-carb dieting with much success, I felt I needed a bit of a reward. You see, Canada Post had recently contacted me and revoked the dedicated postal code required for my buttocks. Having the choice of any treat for this momentous occasion, I decided on a 360 gram package of my favourite childhood candy; Goodies, which I intended to savour over the course of an evening, preferably with some tawdry movie involving Johnny Depp and an 18A rating.
Alas, it was not to be.
My first clue that this celebratory evening was going to go very badly was the large yellow burst on the front of the package which happily proclaimed ‘NOW GOODIER!’ (At that point the horrors that followed the introduction of the PR Disaster know as 'NEW COKE,' should have bubbled to the top of my brain and induced caution, but after 12 months of processed sugar deprivation, I heedlessly opened the package and began to blissfully consume what should have been a rare treat.)
My second indication that something had gone horribly, horribly wrong was the odd texture of afore said “Goodier” goodies. The interior black liquorice was too jelly-like, too gummy. Half the pleasure of proper Goodies is in the firm, tough liquorice texture. Puzzled, I kept eating, thinking that perhaps I had eaten a stray ‘mutant goodie’. To my deep dismay, I found they were all hideously afflicted so.
At this point of bitter disappointment, the lingering burning acidic aftertaste suddenly hit like a culinary Quentin Tarantino subplot rampaging within my mouth. Destruction, fiery wrecks of “Goodier Goodies” lay sizzling like gasoline-drenched corpses on my tongue. Shock and horror ensured, sans the spiffy background music. I performed what would have been unthinkable only a few moments before. I actually flung the bag of Goodies away in disgust.
I washed out my mouth in a feeble attempt to rid my poor abused taste buds of this grotesque sensation. I peered at the back of the bag, and find perhaps a hint... IMPORTED BY HERSHEY CANADA INC.
Imported? Imported? Oh yes... The Hershey plant in Smiths Falls, where I used to get my Goodies fix by the pound, is now closed. The production of those “Goodier” Goodies is now in the hands of what county exactly? Is lead and/or mercury now a GOODIER ingredient?
That you have ruined one of the few still accessible and sweet memories of my childhood is not enough! You proclaim this drek to be ‘Goodier’!! ‘GOODIER’!!!???” I beg to effing differ! ‘GOODIER’??According to whom? Extremely acidic burning aftertaste aside, I feel compelled to inform you that your new “Goodier” Goodies now taste like ass.
What ambitious, silver-tongued, insidious corporate demon spawned from the depths of Candy Hell dreamed up this bright idea? Did he and/or she blurt out during a five martini lunch of Hershey executives, “Hey, I KNOW! Let’s fark with the tried and true taste of Goodies. Nobody will mind!"
Please have the wanker responsible shot and /or fired immediately.
I also respectfully request you immediately cease making this “GOODIER” atrocity and go back your ORIGINAL Goodies recipe. A statement to the effect that Hershey's have made a regrettable error in judgment and it will never happen again, Scouts Honour, would also be appreciated, but really, I just want my damn candy back.
E. Ann Bardawill
Flush with righteous indignation, did I look up the snailmail address and send off a paper missive with a violently-licked stamp firmly affixed to the upper right corner of an envelope? Hell no! This is the digital age. I googled hershey dot com, and clicked on the ‘contact us’ link, found the name I sought and promptly emailed my rant to the CEO, C. Dax Coen directly.
I marvelled at the inappropriate design of the Hershey website.... and then noticed the company tagline which read:
‘Hershey Systems is a software company that provides innovative solutions to more than 200 higher education institutions around the world.’
I just as promptly dash off an apologetic email to same CEO, claiming sugar withdrawl for my hideously embarassing oversight, hit send, and then methodically bang my head against the desk repeatedly. I then stop. Take a deep breath and regoogle for the correct address.
Cut. Paste. Resend Rant. Rinse. Repeat.
The CEO of the UK based Software company replies the next day.... and I quote:
“Actually... That was the best email I have read in a while.
C. Dax Coan
Hershey Systems, Inc.
I take heart that I may have greatly amused the entire board of directors as well as all employees of a British software company. Was a copy posted on the company news board, with a note tacked above reading:
‘Email from batshit crazy Canadian woman after succumbing to sweetie depravation”?
I both dread and secretly hope so.
On the other hand, the CEO of Hershey’s chocolate does not personally acknowledge my email. I receive a generically vague reply that does nothing to reassure me that my once favourite candy will be restored.
And so, another small piece of my childhood dies. But perhaps I will start mailing letters with stamps again.