First and foremost, I do love your crayons, Crayola peeps. Your markers too. They beat the snot out of Roseart any day of the week. As a poor kid growing up in the 70’s/80’s, there was nothing quite as amazing as the 128-crayon box with the BUILT-IN sharpener on the back of the box and I cannot even begin to explain my delight when I was given an 8-pack of your markers back in the day. I thought I had struck gold. Fast-forward 30 years and I see my kids, brought up in a time when this kind of luxury was standard, will never ever know how much I appreciated Crayola back in the day.
However, it must be said, Crayola should NOT be in the business of making food. Never. I would never have even imagined such a thing remotely possible until the day I rounded the corner in Wegmans to be faced with an end-cap display of Crayola gummies and fruit rings.
“What the absolute ever-loving FUCK is this about?” my mind cried out.
As an aside, let me tell you a little bit about WEGMANS, which is the rising KING of grocery chains in the northeast. Kroger, Publix, Food Lion, Piggly Wiggly, Giant, HEB… step aside and watch the big guns go to work. What started out as a little chain based in Rochester, NY has swiftly been gaining ground in the land of grocery. It’s pretty much the only place I shop for groceries and my family likes to razz me for my love of their store brands. Open my pantry and it’s all “food you feel good about.” Google that term right now and open your mind to everything your grocery store can do for you.
And don’t judge me for this post. We all shop for food, people. I am a mom; sometimes, the opportunity to go grocery shopping by myself has saved my sanity. The soothing earth tones of the store, the stellar music (ahem, INXS and Duran Duran, people) played in the evenings when I prefer to shop, great employees, gadgets and gizmos; all these things have elevated the grocery experience for me.
Have I mentioned their beer isle, where they have hosted beer tastings?? Game changer, friends. I have bellied up to that beer tasting booth like I used to belly up to the bar at my favorite college watering hole as a 19-year old holding onto my chalked ID for dear life. Did I also mention the tastings were FREE? My only complaint? That they don’t host those beer tastings at the front of the store. Because, let me tell you, from experience, shopping with alcohol does not suck. Not one little bit. All the better when the men they have hired to pour that free beer are good-looking and chatty. Then when your friends round the corner with their full shopping cart, it becomes a party!
I could wax poetic about Wegmans all damn day. Did I mention their new “scan and go” app is glorious too? Bagging my own groceries is 100% fine with me. I like things JUST SO. Don’t judge me; I have control issues and am working on it. But I digress…
Imagine my shock then, in aisles full of organic, gluten-free, name brand and private label items, to come across THIS shocking item.
I suppose, in Crayola’s defense, this allows them to answer the age-old question, what do the colors “carnation pink,” “sunset orange,” and “electric lime” taste like. I guess I didn’t realize that so many people wondered.
Still, one does not automatically think “Crayola” when they are pondering what sorts of food would be healthy to feed their family. So one has to wonder what marketing wunderkind brought this idea to the table at the quarterly P&L meeting with the board of directors. I would like to meet that person what led them to this complete and utter stretch of imagination in their brand strategy, because I was in no way tempted to add this item to my cart. And frankly, seeing that they had been put on sale, on an end cap for increased visibility, I suspect others felt the same way.
You had me markers. You had me at built-in crayon sharpeners. You lost me at gummy bears.
So here’s my advice to Crayola… stay in your lane. The school supply lane.