Juicy Fruit Gum came in only three flavors-dentyne, juicy fruit, and bubble. Each had its own unique flavor, taste, and smell. Dentyne was small, maybe an inch long, wrapped in dusted paper. Small hands love small packages; small recognizing the potential of small. The smell I now know as cinnamon seemed strangely foreign and medicinal to my young palate. Slowly opening each folded end and middle seam took great concentration and small motor skills.
Juicy Fruit alerts my salivary glands; sweet nectar from a fruit I have never and will never know has me smacking before I even get this dusted paper undone; silver paper with a raised pattern texture and serrated edged seams delight the tactile senses; long thin rectangular sticks, called sticks for what reason I have yet to discover, quickly curl onto my tongue, satisfying my hunger for that illusive fruit.
Gum for blowing bubbles is any child’s delight and challenge. The entire experience begins with a wrapper cartoon to be read-if able, shared, and understood-or not. Hard pink with a smell uniquely its own; it awaits the moment of placement between upper and lower molars-willingly submitting to the transformation. Once chewed the kneading process begins; tongue now takes over stretching and removing remaining sugar allowing the gum to fold, curl; the tongue tip creates a pocket; pursed lips blow air inside; eyes expectant watch as the bubble grows; eyes crossed see the gum miracle fill, expand, and pop; a sound only popped gum can make.
My mouth is watering; I long for the juice of the gum-fruit!