Hershey, PA--The giant candy maker Hershey's today returned the hard chocolate candy Tastetations to selected supermarkets and convenience stores, leading to mass stampedes, crushed toes, and slapped faces as dieting women battled grocery clerks still bitter from the 2004 riots that ensued when Tastetations were taken off the market.
"I'll speak frankly," said a Hershey's product manager who refused to give his or her name or gender. "We got tired of receiving death threats and hate mail. Let's face it...these women on Weight Watcher's are insane. Points, points, points...it's their mantra. It's all they talk about. Why they can't just gorge themselves on regular chocolate and drop dead is beyond me. So we brought Tastetations back. But only in the chocolate flavor. We didn't feel that these consumers deserved all three flavors."
Women buying Tastetations today did not seem to care that the candy now comes in a small pack, similar to LifeSavers, rather than a large bag, nor that it is triple the price and each candy one-third the size of the old Tastetations.
"It's still Tastetations," explained one woman, as she cradled several dozen packages in her arms while her child screamed unsuccessfully for her attention.
"I'll pay whatever it takes and do whatever is necessary to get it." Then, after gazing at a particularly unattractive store manager with stringy hair and virulent halitosis, she added, "Well, maybe not do anything...but I'd certainly pay any price that Hershey sets for this product."
Hershey's would not say if it had been influenced by calls from irate consumers or by an earlier article on www.thespoof.com, but it conceded that its decision to pull the candy was poor marketing.
"Merck had laid off some product managers in 2004, in preparation for the VIOXX debacle, and we hired them, but they didn't know XEDR$%^&*(#$%@ about working with candy," said the vice president for business development. "They were the ones who suggested we pull the candy. Once we fired them, we realized that there hadn't even been a valid financial reason for stopping production."
Supermarket employees, though, were nervous and resentful about the product's re-introduction. "I remember being slugged over the head last year by some raving lunatic woman when she heard that Tastetations were gone," said one produce clerk who still wears an Ace bandage on his arm. "I tried to explain I customarily dealt with fruits and vegetables and didn't give a @#$#%$^%^&* about the candy aisle, but she slugged me anyway."