Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Oompa loompa doompadee doo/Don't open that file, if you know what's good for you (Department of Weirdness, Photoshop Elements Division)

I like candy! Who doesn't? And one of the most fun things about travelin' around the country hither and thither (but mostly hither) with my good pal John is the joys of discovering regional candy. Whether it's the creamy crunchy joy of a southern GooGoo Cluster; that New England buffet of a treat, the four-flavored Sky Bar; wonderful crumbly British Cadbury Flake; the sweet 'n' sassy Australian Violet Crumble; or my favorite, Minnesota's Pearson's Nut Goodie (the Garrison Keillor of chocolate-coated treats)...if you find a local shop that carries 'em or order them online, you can travel the world in a mouthful of chocolate and never leave home.

Idaho SpudOne of my favorite regional candies is the Idaho Spud, a delicious mound of chocolate dipped marshmallow and coconut that's shaped like a...you guessed it...like a potato. Mmm, that's good eatin', and you don't even need to cover it with sour cream and chives to enjoy it. They play up the potato connection by calling it "the candy bar that makes Idaho famous" and the package is brown with a lot of little red eyes all over it. Looks like a potato, but we know better, right?

Last time I was in Seattle I went to a drug store that featured a lot of regional candies from the Pacific Northwest and brought home a big sack of chocolate for myself...and because sharing is fun, for my good pal John and the delightful Randi, too. Among 'em, of course, were several yummy Idaho Spuds. When the chocolate was all too quickly gone, we still had an assortment of delightful candy wrappers, colorful and exotic. I told Randi I would scan all the candy wrapped so she could do a LiveJournal post about them. So yes, I scanned 'em all. I opened the files in Photoshop Elements—it's easy, even with hooves—and sized 'em down to posting side.

Except: Every. Single. Time. I open the Idaho Spud file Photoshop Elements runs and runs and run and runs and the li'l colored Mac pinwheel spins round and round and round and round for minutes and minutes at a time...and then...boom, it crashes. Why's it doing that? Well, I get a progress bar just before it does so. It tells me...

(Wait for it, folks)

...that it's looking for and trying to fix...

(I absolutely swear this is true)

red eyes in the image.

Error message

Now that's a literal Photoshop. I imagine if I asked it to process an image of the movie poster from this film, it would blow up my computer. Don't worry, I ain't gonna risk it. But why not try it out for yourself? An Idaho Spud, that is—not trying to break your Photoshop software. Order up a box and see for yourself: no melted butter necessary. Idaho Spuds: them's good eatin'. Just not very good scanning.


Mike Baehr said...

Hey Bully-n-John, you'd enjoy the book Candy Freak by Steve Almond (really). The author talks about his lifelong candy obsession and tours a bunch of regional candy factories, including where they make the Idaho Spud. It's a fun read!

My captcha word is funny: vefequz!

Anonymous said...

You'd also probably really like the Idaho Candy Co's Old Faithful, which is a lot like the Idaho Spud, but without the coconut.

And ditto on the Candyfreak recommendation. Almond's love of candy is eerily similar to a grown comics nerd's obsession.

Anonymous said...

I like Violet Crumble.

MarkAndrew said...

You like the Idaho spud, eh?

Have I got a book for you.


The author tours various smaller candy-making operations, including the Idaho-Spud factory, laments the demise of the regional candy store, gets lots of free samples...

It's all sortsa good fun.

Pere Ubu said...

Another recommendation for Candyfreak! Great book covering the "small press" of candy, and inspired me to search out Goo-Goo Clusters for myself. Damn good candy, I must say.

Bully said...

Yes, I've read and loved Candyfreak! Another fantastic book--really, I couldn't put it down!--is The Emperors of Chocolate, a history of Hershey and the M&M Mars companies. Fun and delicious!