Confession: I hate conversation hearts… and yet for some reason, whenever I find myself in the presence of them, I just can’t stop eating them. Imagine how dangerous it would be if someone combined these idly snackable lumps of sugar with the form of a candy I actually do like — jelly beans, perhaps. Wait, what? Conversation heart jelly beans are actually a thing now? Hoo boy. I’m sunk. Do not let me near them — whatever you do. I might just keep jamming them into my face until I explode. Danger! Danger, Will Robinson!
There’s just one problem: Brach’s new Conversation Heart Jelly Beans aren’t actually… y’know, heart shaped. They still look like beans; they just happen to have a few random and incredibly short words stamped across their sugary shells. Personally I like Laura Northrup at Consumerist’s name for them: “They aren’t heart-shaped,” she wrote, “they’re still bean-shaped, which is why I am going to call them Conversation Kidneys.” Speaking of words, by the way, you’d probably have a hard time actually carrying out a conversation with these suckers — they don’t have quite as much useable surface area as a good old fashioned Necco heart does, which means they’re limited to things like “HAPPY” and “XOXO.” No “EMAIL ME” here — sorry, tech enthusiasts.
For the curious, their product description at Candy Warehouse is suitably saccharine:
“Sure you can get all cuddily-wuddily with your pumpkiny-wumpkiny this Valentine’s Day. But if you really want to get sappy, you’ll have to bust out your Brach’s conversation heart jelly beans. They’re packed with an assortment of sugary sweet fruit flavors that’ll have you both feeling lovey-dovey, and the cutesy-wootsy inscriptions printed on their colorful exteriors will make communication easier… you know, when your lips are otherwise occupied.”
…And with that, I’ve officially reached capacity for any and all “blanket-wankety” terminology this year. Seriously, guys. Waaaaaaaaaaaaaay too much.
But you guys? I just cannot get over the misnomer. I mean, I understand why these things aren't actually heart-shaped; it would probably be an unnecessary expensive to create heart-shaped jelly bean molds that are only used once a year (even if other companies have managed to make it work). But couldn’t you just… not call them hearts, since they aren’t hearts in the first place? What’s wrong with plain ol’ “conversation jelly beans?” It’s more accurate while still getting the point across. Also, just think of all the money you’d save on ink without having to print that extra and totally pointless word across all of the packaging. Am I right?
You know, it occurred to me today that we’re only a month away from Valentine’s Day… and yet we haven’t been totally steamrollered by pink and red-adorned marketing ploys yet. Maybe the greeting card and candy companies decided we all needed a little extra time to recover from the onslaught of the December holidays before burying us in cupid-themed merchandise? Whatever the reason, it’s been a welcome respite — but now’s probably the time to start bracing yourself for the next round of marketing. Ah well. At least it comes with enough sugar to keep us going indefinitely. Who needs sleep when you’ve got stupid amounts of Valentine’s Day candy on hand? Vroom vroom!