Author: Luisa Perkins
•7:29 PM
Well, not really; that would mean that I'd be getting paid right now. Unfortunately, I'm not.

I'm blogging remotely from the World Fantasy Convention in Saratoga Springs, NY this weekend. Christian and I will be here through Sunday hearing from favorite writers like Jane Yolen, Peter Straub, Dave Duncan, Guy Gavriel Kay, and Garth Nix, among many others. And I tell you: if Stephen King shows up for the awards banquet on Sunday, I'll just die.

I love my MacBook, but I do not love Blogger's lame Mac version. Since I refuse to learn HTML, I'll have to come back to these weekend posts and put in links and images when I get home. But NaBloPoMo must go on!

Pezmama requested that I post about PEZ today. Though she owns over 80 PEZ dispensers, I don't recall that Pezmama has ever posted about the origins of this fine candy. I've loved PEZ since I was very little, so I was happy to comply with her request.

Ahh, the wonders of Google. Everything I'm about to tell you is information that you could have obtained yourself within a matter of seconds; I am no expert.

PEZ was invented in Austria in 1927. The first flavor was peppermint; in fact, the name PEZ is taken from the German word for peppermint: PfeffErminZ. The candy was first sold in tins, as Altoids are today; later the inventor invented a dispenser shaped like a cigarette holder and marketed the mints and their dispenser as an alternative to smoking.

The PEZ dispenser as we know it was developed in 1955. Santa Claus and Mickey Mouse were two of the original dispensers and remain among the most popular today. The dispensers are highly collectible, but the rumor that eBay was founded for the trading of PEZ dispensers is false (though eBay founder Pierre Omidyar's wife is an avid PEZ collector).

The PEZ company has had a general rule against making PEZ heads of living people. The Teutul family of Orange County Chopper fame is a notable exception (I know: RANDOM).

PEZ the candy has come in many flavors over the years, with the most popular being the classic lemon/strawberry/orange/grape variety pack. (See? No lime! PEZ is perfect.) I'm intrigued by the new SourZ flavors; gotta find me some of that.

PEZ has been featured on Seinfeld and in a Nickelback song. It also apparently played key roles in the TV series The Pretender and the movie Stand By Me.

My favorite PEZ dispenser of all time was Chewbacca. You probably have one or two lying around the house; what's your favorite?
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On 2/11/07 , Annette Lyon said...

I've always loved that Seinfeld episode--and I remember it was a Tweetie Bird PEZ dispenser that caused all the trouble.

Do tell me that this doesn't mean who haven't watched The Pretender. It was such a GREAT show. And yes, Jarrod becomes fascinated with PEZ as well as Oreos and lots of other things he never saw as a child.

On 2/11/07 , Radioactive Jam said...

Wait. No lime? No LIME?! I want lime! I *need* lime! Lime would be my all-time forever favorite!

Unless it tasted nasty. Then not so much. And I'm almost certain there are no PEZ dispensers in the radioactive realms at this time. Although I have been tasked with finding a Darth Vader model.

Wish me luck. And I hope you have a great time at the convention, with or without Mr. King.

On 2/11/07 , PEZmama said...

Truck (#5 with cab R2) was a favorite of mine for a long time just because it was so different from the mundane cartoon head. For the same reason, the whistle was my second favorite. But in recent years I have become quite fond of... can you guess... Wonder Woman. For obvious reasons.

The PEZ* referred to in Stand by Me were cherry PEZ which, aficionados can tell you, don't exist any more. I am not, by the way, an aficionado. I am, however, a bit sad about not being able to get cherry PEZ, as I would have liked to try them. As it stands now, I don't like any of the flavors of PEZ that much at all.

Did I ever blog about how my collection came about?

*And what, exactly is the plural of PEZ?

On 2/11/07 , Kimberly said...

We have winnie the pooh, piglet, and cookie monster.

Yummy post.

On 2/11/07 , dawn said...

We currently do not have a PEZ dispenser in our house. When the kids were younger I bought them each one.

Thanks for all the great info I would never have thought to look up. It is now nestled in my brain with other information I don't recall until some one brings it up.

On 3/11/07 , Sirdar said... informative post.

Sounds like you are having a great time at the conference. Hope the rest goes as good and Steven King shows up and sits at your table or the seat beside you.

On 3/11/07 , Deb said...

All the Star Wars PEZ dispensers were the BEST!

On 3/11/07 , anjmae said...

we have holiday PEZ--bunnies, jack-o-lanterns, Santa-head and the like. I, however, like the Snoopy one, don't ask why (because I don't know). we get PEZ each holiday, one for each child and one for me!

I am on the lookout for sourz!!

On 3/11/07 , Jen of A2eatwrite said...

My DH loves pez containers, and my German daughter and I almost bought him the Disney Princess collection the other day as a joke. Have a wonderful time at the convention! I'm jealous. ;-)

On 3/11/07 , Jenna said...

Would readers hate me if they knew that I throw away PEZ dispensers that I find around the house? I throw away lots of things though...

Now, what about PEZ dipped in chocolate? Now THAT would be something for everyone!

On 4/11/07 , Adriana Velez said...

Luisa, Blogger is much better on Firefox -- have you heard of it? You can download it for free (forget the URL). But anyway, that's what I use for the mac.

Hope you two had fun.

On 4/11/07 , meleah rebeccah said...

My favorite PEZ dispenser is SuperWoman.