NOW The Mystery of the Gum Revealed

Recap for those of you who don’t want to scroll: I’ve got a plastic Spider-Man head on my top shelf, which is covered by a skeleton mask. 10 years later, I remembered that the head was filled with Bazooka Joe bubble gum. The gum’s state a decade later remains uncertain, until now…

The head is on my desk…

The skeleton mask has been removed…

I’m popping off the top of the head…

D’oh! It’s Dubble Bubble, not Bazooka Joe. That would explain why I couldn’t find it through a Google search when I was trying to verify the ancient status of the Spider-Man head. 

The gum looks fine, but is rock-hard. I’m being very careful, so as not to break any teeth, but it doesn’t seem like it’s going to give anytime soon.

Instead of Bazooka Joe, we’ve got…Fleer Funnies, Starring Pud!

Pud? Pud? Really? I’m going to have to do a Google search for “Fleer Employee Gets Fired Over Practical Joke Where Comics Aimed At Kids Feature A Main Character Named Pud.”

In the first panel, some lady is in a phone booth. “Pud, I can’t hear you! Raise your voice!”

In the second panel, Pud is standing on a stepladder. “Is that better, Ma?”

Wow. That makes me long for the biting wit of Bazooka Joe. Let’s try another one…

Fleer Riddles, Panel One: “What animal has more lives than a cat?”

Answer: “A frog! He croaks every night!”

Okay, that sucked, but not on the level of standing on a frickin’ stepladder to raise your voice. We’ll try one more:

Another Fleer Riddle: “What did Mama Lightning Bug say to Papa Lightning Bug?”

“Isn’t Junior bright for his age?”

Good thing they underlined the word “bright.” I might have thought that the punchline came from calling a bug “Junior.” You don’t name bugs “Junior!” That’s for humans! Ha-ha! Stupid lightning bugs!

Update: The gum eventually softened and became just as nasty as regular gum of this variety. So it does have survival power. I don’t know if that’s disturbing or a relief.

Hold on, I want to find another one with Pud…

I’m not sure if this kid is Pud or not, but he’ll do. “Doc, what does that X-Ray of my head show?” “It shows nothing!” Ooooh! Snap!

Another riddle. It’s the same goddamn frog one! WTF? Five wrappers in and I’m getting reruns?  

I’ve got hundreds left. Beware…

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