Monday, 3 October 2011

Pretzel hit and Borg miss

An Auntie Anne's pretzel stand opened in The Oracle over the weekend! Hubby and I long for the taste of a big, hot pretzel from time to time, and it just can't be had around here. Supermarkets don't sell the ones you can make at home, and nowhere else did either. Until now. The excitement's got me all in a twist! (hardy-har-har)

Seriously, there are only a few Auntie Anne's in the UK, and I've not seen anywhere else that sells big ol' soft pretzels. Even when I lived near Anne's in the States, it's the kind of thing where I just bought a pretzel once every two or three years. But the option for a sweet, warm, soft carbohydrate blast was always there if I wanted it, waiting in the background like an old friend you never contact but are glad to know they exist on the earth. And hubby seriously missed buying microwave pretzels, and his cravings were catching.

So we went down and dutifully bought an almond pretzel. Better than I remembered. Seriously, heaven in a sweet, fluffy twist of dough. The prices, however, could've been a bit more pretzel-fan friendly. The basic varieties were £2.30 to £2.50 (or $3.56 to $3.88). Still, I'm sure I'll end up buying them more here than in the States because of the novelty of actually being able to get my hands on one.

I don't really get the "Resistance is Futile!" tagline. Yes, I understand they are saying you can't resist their great pretzels, but that tagline is totally Star Trek Borg terror circa 1988. What the hell it has to do with pretzels, I don't know. The tagline has been used in various funny ways over the years, but this ain't one of them. It just seems like a lame hack. (A Google search tells me that this phrase was also used once in a '70s Dr. Who, and though this is the land of Dalek and Tardis, I don't think it caught on as a catchphrase until it became the mantra of the badass Borg.) Imagine some ad company actually getting paid to come up with that, actually turning it in at a meeting. And the pretzel people actually *liking* it! Where's Don Draper when you need him? He could make buying that pretzel seem like a bit of nostalgic bliss you couldn't live without, and he'd do it without ripping off an outmoded TV franchise. But I'll still buy the pretzels, they kinda sell themselves. Maybe that's why no real effort went into the ad campaign.

Now if companies could just manage a Lean Cuisine pizza in this country, I'd be thrilled. That's the No. 1 food item I miss -- they just don't do many diet pizzas here, and the ones they have are high on price and low on taste (we're talking about $4.50 for some little Weight Watchers oval that's more like a 5-year-old's home "pita pizza" project than the tasty treat that is the Lean Cuisine version, which I used to find on sale for $2 at Safeway). Ah well, can't have it all.

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