While in college, I worked as a retail sales associate at one of the two gas stations in my hometown.
Sometimes it was stressful working with the general public. Other times it was boring when the stream of customers hit a lull. It was cleaning, stocking, food handling, cash register, and balancing the end of shift paperwork. It was a lot of work for little pay. It was also probably the funnest job I have ever had.
One reason was I had a lot of freedom to spend my time however I wanted. That is how I discovered my love of finding expired food products (more about that in a future post). I sometimes mixed up the cleaning products to make a streaming mystery floor mopping solution (hey, my trainer showed me that!). I got to make sale signs on the computer using clip art. I got to hang seasonal decorations from atop a very tall, rickety, non-OSHA approved ladder.
It was also fun when I would close the store, then stay up all night with my friends, then drive by the store 5 hours later to wave high to the manager, who opened. He would shake his head in disapproval and say things like “You haven’t even been to bed yet, have you?” (Note: The manager was only like 3 years older than me, and in college as well.) Ya, those are the amazing things a college student can do with the magic of youth.
One day a week the grocery stock would arrive. I usually worked the closing shift, so my job was to price (yes, we still did that back in the ye olde days of my college years) and put out as much of the stock as I could before close. It was kind of exciting because sometimes we would get in new products.
Who would be the first to try the new kind of chips or candy?
I learned that moon pies are gross–a lesson I have not forgotten to this day.
I learned that Charleston Chew is only good if it is fresh and chewy. I also learned this is almost impossible because it doesn’t stay fresh for long, even while still sealed in the package.
I also learned about the wonder that is BRACH’S BRIDGE MIX!
I was restocking the Bridge Mix one day and took the time to actually read the package. I had just assumed it was reserved for little old ladies playing the card game Bridge. I had always gone for brand name, flashy packaged chocolate treats, like Hershey’s or Nestle or Reese’s.
But Brach’s Bridge Mix contained a variety of yummy things. Cremes, caramels, peanuts, cashews, raisins, cherry jellies.
ALL DRENCHED IN CHOCOLATE!
How did the little old ladies keep this a secret from the rest of the world for so long?
People should be giving this out for Trick or Treat on Halloween!
I have been hooked on Bridge Mix ever since that day. If you like chocolate and you haven’t tried it yet, you should. It is a chocolate lover’s dream come true. It is like a box of chocolates, but without having to guess which fillings you will like and the cumbersome box.
Surprise! I actually like all the fillings in Bridge Mix. [For more on what I will and won't eat, click here.] I am not crazy about cashews, but I will eat them. I think the white creams are supposed to be coconut (and I don’t like coconut), but it isn’t strong enough to bother me.
I will note that fresh bags are much better than older ones. If you bite into a cream and it breaks, rather than gives, you should possibly lodge a complaint for your money back with the company.