Bliss Point

Michael Moss wrote an excellent book on the fast food industry called “Salt Sugar Fat:  How The Food Giants Hooked Us”.  It explains the science behind the industry’s quest to find the “Bliss Point” – the perfect, addictive balance of sugar salt and fat.  The researchers have spent decades as well as millions of dollars to find this ratio.  I spent one afternoon and about fifty bucks blowing it right out of the water.

My friend Kim and I spent a few hours at the Canadian National Exhibition.  We got in free courtesy of my good friend and insider, Jennifer and together we made our way directly to the Food Building, ignoring the rides, ignoring the music, ignoring the vendors booths and stopping only for a brief foray into the Arts & Crafts building.  To buy fudge.

We had a very specific mission:  to explore the new and amazing concoctions that the Fair had to offer.  I consider it a get out of jail free pass for a single day to eat all the things I would normally scorn.  It did not disappoint.  From a turkey dinner waffle (the waffle is made out of stuffing!!!) to a cheekily named CroBar (croissant with chocolate bar squares baked in to it) we enjoyed gustatory experimentation from all parts of the globe.

Undropped waffleCroBar

Kimchi fries, Clam Chowder fries, Choco Chicken, peanut butter siracha bites.  All down the gullet in a delicious dance of hyper caloric revelry.

Some poor soul dropped their waffle.  We noted how truly unpleasant dropped food looks.

Dropped Waffle

Then I uploaded all of the photos I took of the things we actually DID eat and realized that the undropped versions were not overwhelmingly photogenic either.

Kimchi FriesChowdah FriesChoco Chicken

I must remember to give any food stylist I meet a hearty handshake.  The one little item that did give a figurative smile to the camera was the marshmallow nutella bao, which we think looks like a muppet.  Goodness knows it isn’t food.

Muppet Bao

“This is everything that is wrong with America!” I proclaimed as I tucked the last bit of shining alabaster  sugar and bleached flour delight down my throat.

I have relearned to love the Ex in the last few years after a prolonged shunning.  It helps to have a friend on the inside, who not only gets me in free but susses out the best fudge purveyors and lets you in on the concert schedule and secret gems the Fair has to offer.  There is a remarkably good sense of fun here.  People bring their kids and their parents, hormonal teens try to pick each other up over the din of the carneys and you can buy a floor mop or a sari or a whirlpool tub within ten feet of each other.  Kim and I were seduced by a particularly enticing massage unit that heated up.  I had to be torn from the back one – Kim nearly became the Borg with the face version


Truly, there is something for everyone.

And everyone seems to include some of the less bright bulbs in the chandelier.  As we were leaving I noticed the following warning signs on the sundae stand.

Sundae Warning

It saddens me slightly that the populace needs to be warned not to jam a wooden stake down their throats but it should be noted that this second sign appeared in front of an actual pile of peanuts:

Peanut warning

Yes kids.  These peanuts may contain peanuts.

It was an excellent afternoon, spent with great company in a very upbeat atmosphere.  I am home now to beach myself and to vaguely ponder what my triglyceride levels might be.  Perhaps they will have levelled off by next year when I can only imagine what the Bacon Nation people will have thought up for our dining pleasure


Leave a Reply