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At Last, Progress in the War on Gum
Wall Street Journal, by Joe Queenan

Original Article

Posted By:Pluperfect, 3/29/2014 3:10:08 PM

People are always complaining that there´s nothing but bad news out there, but they´re wrong. Market researchers estimate that U.S. chewing gum sales have fallen 11% in the past four years and that the slide will keep on going. I can think of nothing more inspiring in recent history. Having worked for four summers in a bubble-gum factory while in college—and having never once thought about touching a stick of gum again—I can visualize no substance more disgusting, no habit more repellent, no entity more antithetical to basic human dignity than chewing gum. The reports that sales are plummeting speak volumes about

      


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Reply 1 - Posted by: Jennie C., 3/29/2014 3:22:12 PM     (No. 9789797)

I chewed gum as a teenager; don´t anymore.

But this is another person trying to tell me what to do and what not to do. I´m sick of it.

I get it on news programs, even the traffic reports, it´s everywhere.

Speaking of which, Earth Hour is tonight, don´t forget to turn on all of your lights.

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Reply 2 - Posted by: Hazymac, 3/29/2014 3:42:31 PM     (No. 9789813)

Back in the high school fraternity, pledges were required to have gum to hand out to the active members. Adams clove and Big Red cinnamon gum were favorites. But that was then.

On occasion I have endured trying to have a conversation (either in person or on the phone) with someone who is rudely cracking bubbles against the hard palate--"Slurp slurp crack slurp crack crack"--and have had to tell them to spit out the gum if they wanted the conversation to continue. There is a proper mannerful way to chew at the dinner table, but no acceptable way to chew anywhere else. Especially tobacco products. Yeccccch. Bingo!

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Reply 3 - Posted by: Knotwyrkin, 3/29/2014 3:52:59 PM     (No. 9789821)

Andy Rooney of 60 minutes pretty much cornered the market on kvetching and rode it to the end. No need for another author to follow.

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Reply 4 - Posted by: abstain, 3/29/2014 3:53:37 PM     (No. 9789824)

This non-scientific study found that "people will find you more attractive and cooler if you chew gum with a smile on your face instead of silently looking like a creep."

http://www.businessinsider.com/beldent-gum-twins-commercial-2013-11

Of course if you chew like a camel, people will be turned off.

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Reply 5 - Posted by: Susannah, 3/29/2014 4:31:15 PM     (No. 9789840)

Queenan´s been writing satire and honor for mostly conservative publications for decades. And given that Rooney is dead, he´s hardly competing for market share.

Since my great dread in life is having to spend a long-haul flight in the vicinity of a gum-cracker, I´m totally on board (so to speak) with his view.

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Reply 6 - Posted by: mamafrog, 3/29/2014 4:37:41 PM     (No. 9789847)

I think it is all the fault of cell phones, most people can´t talk and chew gum at the same time. And lets not even think about how hard it is to get gum out from between those little buttons.

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Reply 7 - Posted by: kahlerbob, 3/29/2014 4:59:38 PM     (No. 9789871)

I´m going to quit because they hire bugouts like Queenan to clean the vats.

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Reply 8 - Posted by: ColonialAmerican1623, 3/29/2014 6:37:04 PM     (No. 9789972)

Similar to a cow chewing it´s cud. Nothing worse than a gum chewer with an open mouth.

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Reply 9 - Posted by: dudette4freedom, 3/29/2014 8:05:24 PM     (No. 9790060)

The great satirist-my fave---Joe Q! I read everything he writes. One of his funniest pieces was written for American Spectator back in the ol days and the topic was how cigarette smoking is a crime so politically incorrect that it is equivalent to ..oh...child beating or murder....Joe Q tested out his theory by lighting up in all the WRONG places (Manhattan bistro, Central Park jogging trail) and recording reactions. It was a SCREAM. I wish I could read it again. "My Goodness" is one book of his i have reread countless times as well as "The Unkindest Cut", "Red Lobster, White Trash" etc...he´s an American treasure.

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Reply 10 - Posted by: Globalwarmer, 3/29/2014 8:37:04 PM     (No. 9790091)

I´ll take a gum chewer´s breath over a coffee drinker´s anyday.

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Reply 11 - Posted by: GW_Rider, 3/29/2014 9:14:17 PM     (No. 9790105)

I oppose gum control.

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Reply 12 - Posted by: ROLFnader, 3/30/2014 8:30:47 AM     (No. 9790413)

Chew all the gum you want- just don´t do it while you´re talking to me. Thanks

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Reply 13 - Posted by: zjrog, 3/31/2014 5:31:22 PM     (No. 9792180)

I sit here with about 5 pieces of gum in my mouth, wishing I could find a way to irritate the writer... Gum is still a guilty pleasure for me, on days when I just know my breath is horrible, stressed over something stupid... I never smoked, or drank coffee. Smoking didn´t appeal to me and coffee turns my stomach. But gum, hmmm... The little floozy that ruined my reputation in high school chewed gum, who am I kidding, I ruined it myself... Fun remembering some of the fun days of my youth, a good writer can bring that out. I still wonder what the fines were in Singapore for chewing gum. Everytime we visited (retired Navy) this was drummed into our heads...

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Reply 14 - Posted by: StormCnter, 3/31/2014 5:38:44 PM     (No. 9792184)

#13, what is it about gum and high school memories? When we were sophomores, my boyfriend received a case...yes a CASE...of Doublemint gum. We chewed Doublemint for months and the smell still turns me back into a 15 year old.

No, I don´t chew gum very often and when I do, it´s not Doublemint.

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