I really did think about doing a more serious piece on Pearl Harbor Day, but there will be lots of other people doing that. Instead, I want to celebrate a treat from childhood. Many will remember eating cotton candy at the circus or a fair or as I did, at the zoo. I loved it when I was a kid, at least partly because I loved watching it being wound around the stick as the machine spun it out.
However, I didn’t love it as much as the Days of the Year Calendar does. Here is how they rhapsodize about this confection: “There exists in the world small clouds of utter delight, floating multicolored strands of spun-sugar all wrapped around a stick or served in a bag. Everything from the machine the produces this treat, to the men and women who operate it, and the very flavor it leaves in your mouth is purely magical. When a treat has gained notoriety around the world and utterly defines what it means to attend a country fair, you know that it deserves a holiday of its very own.”
It’s unclear exactly when and where and by whom cotton candy (candy floss in England) was invented. We know that John C. Wharton and a dentist friend of his (yes, a dentist) William Morrison created a machine to make cotton candy (called fairy floss then) in the late 1800s. They presented it at the 1904 World’s Fair, where it’s said they sold 68,655 boxes for twenty-five cents each, which doesn’t sound like much but was half the price of the admission into the fair itself.
One good question someone asked on one of the sites I read is why is cotton candy day celebrated in December when most of it is eaten in the summer? There seems no good answer.
One piece of trivia: cotton candy is 100% sugar, but actually has less sugar than a can of average soft drink, because it is all fluffed up with air.
Quotes about cotton candy and then about candy in general
Cotton candy is the most amazing form of caramelization ever invented by man.–Jose Andres
I think life is cotton candy on a rainy day. For those who grew up with cotton candy the old-fashioned way, it is very delicate. Pre-made cotton candy that has preservatives is not nearly as good or true. True cotton candy is sugar, color, and air and it melts very quickly. That was the metaphor – it can’t be preserved, it can’t be put aside, it can’t be banked. It has to be experienced, like life.–Nikki Giovanni
I feel like cotton candy: sugar and air. Squeeze me and I’d turn into a small sickly damp wad of weeping pinky-red.–Margaret Atwood
But if they ever saw a sunrise on a mountain morning
Watched those cotton candy clouds roll by
They’d know why I live beneath these Western Skies.
~ Chris LeDoux
All I really need is love, but a little candy now and then doesn’t hurt!–Charles Schulz
Once in a young lifetime one should be allowed to have as much sweetness as one can possibly want and hold.–Judith Olney
Candy is childhood, the best and bright moments you wish could have lasted forever.–Dylan Lauren
Fruit only angers my need for chocolate.–Jason Love
There’s no denying that candy is comfort food and it’s affordable.–Dylan Lauren
Every once in a while, my sweet tooth gets the best of me and I have to snack on some candy.–Derrick Rose
I think people always want candy, whether you’re a kid or an adult.–Dylan Lauren
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