Hot Chocolate Pop-Tarts

In college, my nickname was “Hot Chocolate.”

Well at least I wanted my nickname to be “Hot Chocolate,” but it didn’t catch on with anyone, despite my numerous attempts, like whenever I had to introduce myself in Japanese language class I would say, “Boku no namae wa Marubin desu. Dozo yoroshiku. Nikkunemu wa Hatto Chokurato desu.”

Or whenever someone introduced me at a party or I had to introduce myself in an English-speaking class, I would always say, “My name is Marvin, but all my friends call me “Hot Chocolate.”

That last part was a lie. Unfortunately, none of my friends called me “Hot Chocolate.”

I thought it would make a great nickname for me since I enjoy hot chocolate, listen regularly to the song “You Sexy Thing” by the British group Hot Chocolate, and have a habit of melting candy bars in my pants pockets.

It would’ve been a cool nickname if it caught on, but it didn’t, much like a bunch of fashion trends I tried to start in college, like bowties, bringing back the mullet hairstyle, and wearing jeans low to show off my ass crack whenever I sat down or squatted.

To this day, I’m not sure why I wasn’t able to get anyone to call me “Hot Chocolate.” Perhaps people didn’t know about my love of hot chocolate or perhaps it was that every time I said “Hot Chocolate,” I would say it in a high-pitched voice and then wrap my arms around myself in a B-boy pose.

I may not be able to get others to call me “Hot Chocolate,” but for some reason these new Hot Chocolate Pop-Tarts have no problem being called “Hot Chocolate,” despite not even tasting like hot chocolate and marshmallows like the picture on the box suggests.

Sure it’s got the words “hot chocolate” printed on its box, but when I put “Hot Chocolate” on one of those “Hello My Name Is” name tags, that didn’t even convince anyone to call me by my desired nickname. I thought about getting “Hot Chocolate” tattooed on one of my ass cheeks, but quickly realized the words on my ass would have a totally different meaning whenever I had to take a crap.

Despite not tasting like hot chocolate, the Hot Chocolate Pop-Tarts weren’t bad. They were chocolatey, but not hot chocolatey, and they weren’t as good as some of the other chocolatey Pop-Tarts I’ve reviewed. Speaking of other chocolatey flavors of Pop-Tarts, this one didn’t come with a recommendation to freeze them, but I did try them frozen and they were all right. Just like an Owen Wilson cameo in a Luke Wilson movie, or visa versa, freezing it didn’t make a difference at all.

Each Hot Chocolate Pop-Tart has 200 calories, 2.5 grams of saturated fat, zero grams of trans fat, 200 milligrams of sodium, 34 grams of carbs, less than one gram of fiber, 18 grams of sugar, two grams of protein, 50 milligrams of mediocrity, and a variety of vitamins and minerals.

Now that I think about it, I’m actually glad that “Hot Chocolate” didn’t stick as my nickname, because I now have a new nickname that I’d like to be called. I think I’m going to try to get people to call me “The Pocket Rocket,” because of my love of cargo pants and my fascination with NASA.

Item: Hot Chocolate Pop-Tarts
Price: $3.39
Purchased at: Safeway
Rating: 6 out of 10
Pros: Sweet. Chocolatey. Vitamins and minerals. Hot chocolate the drink. The song “You Sexy Thing” by Hot Chocolate. Didn’t get that Hot Chocolate tattoo on my ass.
Cons: No one wanted to call me “Hot Chocolate.” Doesn’t really taste like hot chocolate. Freezing it doesn’t do anything for it. Melted candy bars in my pocket. My excessive use of quotation marks in this review. None of the fashion trends I tried to start in college caught on, especially showing off my ass crack.

Tylenol GoTabs

Do you suffer from headaches caused by your child’s desire to watch the same frickin’ Barney DVD EVERY SINGLE DAY and because of it the only thing you hear in your head during the quiet moments of your day is an internal verbal tapping of your forehead consisting of Barney singing the lyrics, “I love you. You love me. We’re a happy family. With a great big hug and a kiss from me to you. Won’t you say you love me too” in a seemingly never-ending loop which feels like those lyrics are being tattooed on the frontal lobe of your brain?

Or do you have menstrual cramps that are compounded by your boyfriend/husband/life partner’s inability to understand the pain and wave of emotions you’re feeling, their inconsiderate desire for a BJ to release their sexual tension since you’re not riding his boystick, and their total inability to realize that the chocolate they are too lazy to buy for you will help you cope with the pain?

You could let nature take its course and wait for the throbbing pain to subside, but just like all Mel Gibson-directed movies, natural healing can take a lot longer than we really want. Thank goodness for drugs, which can relieve pain quicker than liquor and in either pill, injectable, or enema form.

If you suffer from any of the aches and pains listed above, perhaps Tylenol GoTabs could be your tiny savior in chewable tablet form. Each of the Tylenol GoTabs has 500 milligrams of acetaminophen magic to temporarily dull the unpleasant sensations you have so that you don’t have to worry about the pain anymore and can concentrate on important things, like setting up an eBay listing for that frickin’ Barney DVD and sell it to some poor unknowing sucker who will experience the pain you went through.

Since they’re kind of inexpensive, you’ll think about adding a box of Tylenol GoTabs with the eBay listing to help with the pain the winning bidder will experience after a week of listening to a stupid purple dinosaur sing songs about manners and family, but you’ll give it a second thought and decide that the pain experienced will make the bidder a better parent and help them realize that perhaps the minivan with the DVD player in the ceiling isn’t the best idea.

Personally, Tylenol GoTabs helped me recently when I found myself as a passenger in a car driven by a fanatical tone deaf American Idol fan who likes to sing at the top of her lungs and has an iPod full of nothing but songs by anyone who’s appeared on the show, including William Hung. If you ever find yourself in that situation, two Tylenol GoTabs will help with the headache caused by their horrible singing and the pain you’ll experience when you jump out of their moving car to escape their horrible singing.

The two Tylenol GoTabs helped relieve my headache pain within twenty minutes, but not the nightmares of Carrie Underwood I’ve had since. Since they’re chewable I didn’t need to drink water with them, but I wish I did because they’re very chalky, like an equally-sized Tums antacid. Its minty flavor was much better than the bitterness of regular aspirins, but definitely wasn’t good enough to freshen breath.

So the next time you’re in the middle of nowhere and have muscular aches that are the result you trying to prove numerous consecutive times that you can do that Kid ‘n Play dance move that involves jumping over your leg with your other leg, but instead you end up tripping over yourself and falling on the hard floor time and time again, making Kid’s hi-top fade hairstyle drop and sag in disappointment, a couple of Tylenol GoTabs will help ease the pain, but not the shame.

Item: Tylenol GoTabs
Price: $2.00 (on sale)
Purchased at: Longs Drugs
Rating: 3 out of 5
Pros: Chewable. Minty. 500 milligrams of pain relieving goodness in each tablet. Portable. Kind of inexpensive. Relieves pain within 20 minutes. Getting rid of Barney DVDs on eBay. The sadistic joy you’ll receive from knowing someone is suffering from the Barney DVD you just sold them on eBay.
Cons: Barney. Only six tablets per pack. Barney. Chalky. Barney. Still need water to consume to get rid of chalkiness. Barney. Unable to relieve shame. Barney. An iPod full of nothing but songs by American Idol contestants and hopefuls. Barney. Menstrual cramps. Barney.

Rehab Energy Drink

Some people go to rehab for illegal drugs. Some people go to rehab for alcohol addiction. Some people go to rehab for things they’ve done to animals sexually. Finally, some go to rehab for their extreme Sesame Street addiction.

I have an addiction…Um, I mean a friend of mine has an addiction to Sesame Street which some people might say is “unhealthy” and “perverse,” and I have…I mean he has gotten a lot help for it. His addiction began innocently as a young child watching Sesame Street daily on PBS. Little did he know that his love of learning numbers, letters, and basic Spanish words and phrases would turn into a love stronger than anything he’s ever imagined.

A love so wrong, yet so right.

Perhaps his love of learning and the pressure of getting good grades were the catalysts for his Sesame Street obsession. They say repetition is one of the ways to learn something and I spent…Um, I mean my friend spent hours watching repeats of the Emmy-award winning show. In no time, he became proficient at counting up to ten, learning all 26 letters of the alphabet, and used the Spanish phrase muy bien regularly in his conversations with others.

However, that wasn’t enough for him. He didn’t want to just watch Sesame Street, he wanted to sweep the clouds away on his way to where the air is sweet. He wanted someone to tell him how to get, how to get to Sesame Street, but no one could tell him how. Instead, thanks to extensive merchandising, he surrounded himself with everything Sesame Street.

Even at the age of 31, his apartment is a shrine to the world’s greatest educational children’s television series EVER. With all of the Sesame Street merchandise he’s collected over the years, some call his apartment an “eBay goldmine,” while others call it “a total chick repellant.”

During his free time as an adult, he spent it doing something Sesame Street-related. For example, because they don’t make adult-sized male Sesame Street pajamas, he took Sesame Street bed sheets and used it as fabric to sew his own pajamas. He also created his own Sesame Street episodes, using puppets he bought in 1990s, that taught the characters important lessons, like the need for Oscar the Grouch to wear deodorant, teaching Snuffleupagus how to hide his marijuana stash from drug sniffing dogs, and tutoring Ernie on the importance of safe sex.

Eventually, it got to the point when my…I mean his Sesame Street addiction took an unusual turn. Whenever cookies were around, he would loudly say Cookie Monster’s catch phrase, “Me want cookie!” and then sing the C Is For Cookie song. He also began inappropriately using his vibrating Tickle-Me-Elmo for entertaining purposes, but not the entertaining purposes it was intended for.

His gradual psychological deterioration caused by his Sesame Street obsession can be seen in the forms of artwork he’s done over the years, which began as a fingerpainting of Big Bird in kindergarden, then doodles of Bert and Ernie in the margins of his high school physics notes, and recently, his anatomically-correct oil painting of Grover.

Before the intervention, his family and friends tricked him into going to by saying they were taking him to see the ice skating production of Sesame Street on Ice, he personally tried to seek help for his Sesame Street addiction by drinking several cans of Rehab Energy Drink. Its berry flavor was good, the light carbonation made it easy to drink, the 120 milligrams of caffeine and the B Vitamins gave a good boost of energy, and it had polyphenol and catechin antioxidants, which is rare for an energy drink, but all of that didn’t help with his addiction.

He should’ve known it wouldn’t work for him, after all it didn’t work with Lindsay Lohan and her whorish ways. Perhaps she should seek professional help, like I did…I mean my friend did. Today, he’s slowly overcoming his Sesame Street addiction and has been spending more time with the slightly less addictive and slightly less time consuming World of Warcraft.

Item: Rehab Energy Drink
Price: $2.29 (12 ounces)
Purchased at: 7-Eleven
Rating: 4 out of 5
Pros: Good berry flavor. 120 milligrams of sweet caffeine. Lots of B Vitamins. Easy to drink. Lots of polyphenol and catechin antioxidants. The educational qualities of Sesame Street. Using a Tickle-Me-Elmo to entertain.
Cons: Pricey for a 12-ounce can. My addiction…I mean my friend’s addiction to Sesame Street. Lindsay Lohan drinks it. Repelling women with a Sesame Street shrine. Using a Tickle-Me-Elmo to entertain.

REVIEW: McDonald’s Cinnamon Melts

Much like Angelina Jolie’s collection of adopted Third World children, the menu at McDonald’s has gotten larger and diverse.

Along with the usual fare of burgers, fries and toys that some people think will make them rich someday when they sell them on eBay, McDonald’s has been offering large salads, premium chicken sandwiches, and gourmet coffee.

Recently, they came out with their Cinnamon Melts, which proves once again that just like drunk college kids who need an idea for a video they want to put on YouTube, McDonald’s will stick anything in a microwave.

I like the direction that McDonald’s is taking because diversity is good. Sure, most of their food isn’t the healthiest thing you can stick down your gullet, but when you’re tired and hungry after a long day at work or school, a Filet-O-Fish can look like a Filet Mignon.

You know what they say, “Variety is the spice of life” and in this case, the spice is cinnamon. Sure, you could live your life without variety, but what fun would that be. I believe a wise man once said, “To make life interesting, sometimes men have to piss sitting down and women have to piss standing up.”

Anyway, every container of McDonald’s Cinnamon Melts is basically a bunch of donut hole-sized pieces of bread with a cinnamon sugar glaze and frosting. I’m not a really big fan of McDonald’s so it would be easy for me to say that these bite-sized cinnamon balls totally bite, but they don’t. Actually, they’re pretty good…for something that comes out of a microwave.

The McDonald’s Cinnamon Melts were sweet, but not sickly sweet like eating a Cinnabon or listening to hours of the Teletubbies talk, and they weren’t as messy as eating a Cinnabon since they were bite-sized and came with a fork. But if you enjoy sucking on your own fingers, you don’t have to use the fork.

The cinnamon sugar glaze was good and it had a nice crystallized crunch to it. The bread was warm, fluffy and soft. Speaking of soft, with the McDonald’s Cinnamon Melts they have found another way to possibly kill us softly. With 460 calories, 19 grams of fat, 9 grams of saturated fat and 32 grams of sugar it isn’t something I would buy on a regular basis, unless I wanted to do more good than Angelina Jolie by feeding more Third World children than she has adopted.

Item: McDonald’s Cinnamon Melts
Price: $1.89
Purchased at: McDonald’s
Rating: 8 out of 10
Pros: Pretty good for something that comes out of a microwave. Under two dollars. Not overly sweet like a Cinnabon. Diverse menu at McDonald’s. Men occasionally pissing while sitting down. Women occasionally pissing while standing up.
Cons: Serving might seem small to some. High calorie. High saturated fat. The health of most of the McDonald’s menu. Those people who think they’ll be rich selling McDonald’s toys on eBay.

Snapple Diet Green Tea

The Snapple Diet Green Tea is quite possibly the healthiest drink EVER.

I have no scientific data, testimonials from fake nutritionists or fancy Microsoft Excel pie charts to back up that statement. All I know is that green tea is healthy, diet is healthy, and Snapple is Made from the Best Stuff on Earth®. Put all three of those things together and you have a threesome of healthiness.

Now just like MC Hammer, let’s break it down.

As many of you know, green tea is full of antioxidants, which have the ability to kick the asses of bad free radicals in your body and make them their bitches. The Snapple Diet Green Tea has a natural antioxidant called epigallocatechin gallate, or EGCG for short, which is only found in green tea.

According to the bottle, EGCG also has the ability to boost your metabolism, although the bottle also says it takes 300 milligrams of it to effectively boost it. A bottle of Snapple Diet Green Tea has only 55 milligrams. So just like drinking six beers in one sitting will give you a better buzz and make all the ugly people look slightly better, drinking six Snapple Diet Green Teas in a day will increase your metabolism and maybe help you forget about whomever you brought home the other night after drinking six beers.

Another reason why green tea is healthy is because it’s green. Green is a healthy color because a lot of healthy vegetables are green, like zucchini, cucumbers, spinach, lettuce, broccoli, green beans, green bell peppers, cabbage, kale, leeks and weed.

Just like Michael Bay does with every movie he directs, the word “diet” has the ability to suck out the soul of anything it touches and just leave a tasteless, reduced-calorie and reduced-fat empty shell behind, which of course isn’t surprising because you can’t spell “diet” without the word “die.” With the Diet Snapple Green Tea, the word “diet” sucks out all the calories, fat and sugar, leaving it with a row of zeroes on its nutrition label.

Finally, the Diet Snapple Green Tea is healthy because it is Made from the Best Stuff on Earth®. I don’t know what the best stuff on Earth are according to Snapple, but I do know that it’s probably all-natural and it’s probably not gold, diamonds, titanium, rubies, silver, or platinum, because those would make a really shitty Snapple.

Overall, the Diet Snapple Green Tea isn’t bad for a diet drink, although I can easily taste the Splenda (sucralose) much like how I can easily taste the Scientology whenever I watch a Tom Cruise or John Travolta movie. The 55 milligrams of EGCG kind of makes up for its taste and so does the 30 milligrams of sweet, succulent caffeine, which is better than nothing, but not enough to prevent me from falling asleep during a Tom Cruise or John Travolta movie.

(Editor’s Note: Thanks to TIB reader Lindsey for recommending the Snapple Diet Green Tea for review.)

Item: Snapple Diet Green Tea
Price: $1.29 (17.5-ounces)
Purchased at: 7-Eleven
Rating: 3 out of 5
Pros: Its taste is all right for a diet drink. 55 milligrams of EGCG. Zero calories. Zero sugar. Zero fat. Kosher pareve. Some Vitamin C. Creates a threesome of healthiness. 30 milligrams of caffeine. Made from the Best Stuff on Earth®.
Cons: If you hate Splenda, you’ll hate this. The word “diet.” Scientology. Everything Michael Bay directs (I feel sorry for Transformers).