Posts Tagged ‘Maple Taffy’

WASHINGTON AND MAPLE TAFFY

April 19, 2010

Prior to his much storied political career, a 23 year-old George Washington suffered a major financial setback when he attempted to establish rural Virginia’s first dedicated Maple Taffy store.  Washington developed a fondness for the sugary treat during his youthful travels in New England, where it was long established as an after-dinner delicacy.  His business venture failed, with Washington bitterly noting in his personal diaries that:

“The Virginian’s coarser Palate does not lend itselfe to cultivation of such Delicate Pleasures.”

Washington himself would retain a great affection for the taffy, an affection which would cost him dearly in terms of dental hygiene and political credibility.  After being forced to take up his famous wooden dentures, political foes would often mock Washington with the derisive nickname, “Old Taffy Lips”.

Old Taffy Lips

'Old Taffy Lips' Washington would rue the business failure “'til (his) sweete dieing moment.”

WHITE MALES AND FOOD FETISHES

May 18, 1988

Prior to his much storied political career, a 23 year-old George Washington suffered a major financial setback when he attempted to establish rural Virginia’s first dedicated Maple Taffy store.  Washington developed a fondness for the sugary treat during his youthful travels in New England, where it was long established as an after-dinner delicacy.  His business venture failed, with Washington bitterly noting in his personal diaries that:

“The Virginian’s coarser Palate does not lend itselfe to cultivation of such Delicate Pleasures.”

Washington himself would retain a great affection for the taffy, an affection which would cost him dearly in terms of dental hygiene and political credibility.  After being forced to take up his famous wooden dentures, political foes would often mock Washington with the derisive nickname, “Old Taffy Lips”.

'Old Taffy Lips' Washington

'Old Taffy Lips' Washington would rue the business failure “'til (his) sweete dieing moment.” (en.wikipedia.org)

However, Washington is not the only historical figure to have paid dearly for his food-related desires.  Christopher Marlowe’s legendary love of plums has been a source of interest to scholars ever since his (almost certainly plum-related) murder in 1593.

The celebrated dramatist and espionage agent was vociferous in his love of the tart fruit, once writing that:

“The Mereste Smack of a Primy Plumb’s Deep-Sweete Nectar doth but at once reduceth me to the moste Fool-Begged of Want-Wits.”

Marlowe’s plum love is theorised to have stemmed from his time as a spy for Sir Francis Walsingham, who was renowned for his extensive and high quality plum fields throughout much of modern day Wigtwizzle and Flagg.

Although scholars believe that Walsingham originally paid Marlowe in plums for his services, it would appear that in time Marlowe’s love of the stone fruit outstripped his earning capabilities, resulting in disastrous debts and his eventual murder.

No mere historical curio, Marlowe’s addiction has provided powerful evidence for the “Marlovian” school, who argue that the works traditionally attributed to William Shakespeare were in fact written by Marlowe. Proponents of the theory have pointed to the many plum references throughout the Shakespearean oeuvre (Guildenstern taking “Plumb and Crabbe-Apple Jam” with him during the trip to England, Lear ranting about “Plumb-Coloured Ducats (coins)”, etc.) as proof of their claims.

Marlowe was often seen in public with plum juice smeared across his lips and cheeks (en.wikipedia.org)

In a similar vein, Vladimir Illyich Lenin was known by his comrades to have an unnatural love for the smell of freshly boiled potatoes.

As low level apparatchik Dimitri Zubkov would recall in his autobiography, “Deeds Done”,

“(After the fall of St. Petersburg to the Bolsheviks) there was much carousing and rejoicing by all of us in the inner circle. We stayed up for days in the Winter Palace, enjoying all manner of fine liqueurs and cordials.

I recall after one particularly boisterous evening, rousing myself and shambling into the (formerly) Royal Kitchen. There I found a most confounding sight: None other than Comrade Lenin, standing over a saucepan of boiling potatoes and clutching at himself furiously!

‘Comrade Lenin!’ I cried, ‘What in heaven’s name!’

Lenin quickly turned around, and pausing only to compose himself briefly, chastised me for having invoked a religious curse.

‘One swears solely by the Deities of Proletarian Struggle now,’ he warned me.”

Lenin.  The Man.  The Potato Fiend.  The Pastry.

Post-Mortem, Lenin miraculously transmogrified into a delicious pastry, replicas of which are enjoyed every year on the anniversary of his death. (shewalkssoftly.com)