I’ve never really had a sweet tooth, but ever since I’ve gone out of my way to watch my diet in conjunction with training for 50 marathons in 50 states, I have these horrible sugary, chocolately cravings that just won’t go away. On one of those missions last week, I raided the pantry for anything I could find; a lone Kiss, a stale Twizzler, maybe a random bag of magic jelly beans. All I found were marshmallows, and almost immediately after grabbing the bag, a light clicked in my head.
I had tossed around a few ideas for the Pittsburgh Penguins Foogo. Some included yogurt or cottage cheese or beets, but I never followed through on any of them. But now armed with some soft and fluffy candy, I knew marshmallows were the way to go.
I bought chocolate syrup at Trader Joe’s, found a box of sealed graham crackers hiding in the cupboard and gave my mom ten bucks to get me some marshmallows.
I woke up on Friday home on the beach, ready to kick off Memorial Day Weekend, but first I needed to take care of this Foogo business. What’s it been, two, almost three months since my last NHL Foogo? Too long. I have to get back to a bi-weekly schedule. I waited for Ma to get back from the grocery store, unloaded her bags and got to work. I had asked for one bag of ‘mallows, and one container of Fluff. She said she couldn’t find the Fluff, so she got two ‘mallow bags. (GODAMMIT. EVERYONE KNOWS FLUFF IS NEXT TO THE BAGGED HALLOWEEN CANDY.) (Just kidding. Thanks for doing the dirty work, Ma.)
Anyway, the project started like they all do, a bloody friggin’ mess. I needed the Fluff to create a sticky surface to keep the marshmallows and crackers in place. Plan B was to microwave the marshmallows in a coffee mug. What a sticky debacle that was. After pulling the mug out of the microwave, I had enough time for MAYBE two scoops of “fluff” onto my canvas – a sheet of butcher paper – before the glob hardened again. I probably nuked the same 15 marshmallows 23 times.
Laying the whole ‘mallows in place, followed by the graham, I was ready for the chocolate syrup. What I wasn’t ready for was Niagara in a spout. The syrup flowed out the nozzle with the serenity of the short bus plummeting into the Colorado River. More mess.
The graham crackers weren’t breaking into the specific shapes I had hoped for, crumbling at the corners, snapping into smaller pieces, and all-around becoming another natural disaster in this latest Foogo failure. (I feel like I’m having a lot of these lately.) Maybe I should have laid out all the grahams first like floor tiles and built everything else on top of that? Too late now.
By this point, it was pretty well-understood that this was not going to work. I thought to scrap everything, but decided to at least finish and photograph the craptastic result for the sake of documentation.
I stood on a chair with my Nikon, looked through the viewfinder and… it worked. In another trick of the eye, which I should be accustomed to with many of these Foogos, what looks like hell from the most slightly skewed angle ranges from acceptable to good when seen from the intended viewpoint.
I was so relieved.
The hands don’t have the intricate detail I had hoped for, and this is more of an impressionist variety of the logo instead of a standard recreation, but I’m okay with the final product.
Doing this in Ma’s kitchen, she came in and out, and after seeing the photos, said, “I didn’t want to say how bad it looked when you were working on it, but that came out really good!”
One of my brothers echoed those sentiments. “It looked terrible on the table.”
Finally, my buddy Brad, a diehard Pens fan who was the first to see any photo of the newest piece, summed it up with, “Perfect.”
Well, what do you think? Pass or fail?