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Could ice cream be worse than drugs? - Justin Boron

Bruster's Real Ice Cream is the dessert fanatic's heroin, except this vice leaves its addicts chubby-cheeked instead emaciated.

I've known too many people that have fallen into this trap. They go in for a single scoop after a movie and next thing you know, it's an after dinner requirement.

Everyday without fail, no matter how far the trek, they need their Bruster's.

These people get hooked on dreams of endless tubs of the more than 30 fresh flavors and droves of sundaes lined up their kitchen tables.

You can see it in their glazed-over eyes as they unconsciously bite into a well-prepared steak. Their face wrenches up at the very taste of food lacking dairy and sugar.

Lobster can't even satisfy their taste buds anymore, and their consumptive life becomes narrowed into finding new ways to enjoy their favorite treat.

They come up with lies, like I'm taking a walk, or I'm going to see a movie. The whole time they're just after the double-scoop of black raspberry or cream cheese.

Some times the ice cream is just not there. Desperation is an ugly behavior, no matter what the circumstances. Be it drugs, money, or ice cream.

In a bind, I've even seen one of these ice-cream addicts guzzling a half-gallon of milk in one side of their mouth and pouring sugar in the other.

So I'm wondering what makes this stuff so addictive? How do people get to the point where regular food just isn't good anymore?

They've got to be putting something in it.

First of all, Bruster's makes a big issue out of it being real. On the company's Web site, it's explained that their ice cream has no "strange-sounding chemicals."

What does that mean? Do they use regular sounding chemicals?

What I think is they probably have the same doctor as word-renown-cyclist Lance Armstrong on their payroll. Somehow they've found a way to disguise the addictive component.

Or maybe they've taken the tobacco companies' strategy, veiling vice in a recreational, fun image.

The company's Web site says, "at Bruster's, we also believe that going out for ice cream should always be fun, which is why we have Banana Thursday (bring your own banana any Thursday for half off the price of a banana split)."

Bruster's also seems to set up right around movie theaters. It works like a trap. Someone comes out of a movie with family or a date, and you have no other choice but to buy an ice cream.

The stores seem to be popping up everywhere too. Right now, Bruster's has 210 stores on the east coast.

It's like an invasion. Before you know it, we'll all be hooked.

How can we stop the insanity?

Maybe ice cream is not as insidious as I make out. But shouldn't this stuff have a warning label from the surgeon general as well?

Justin Boron is the government reporter for the News Daily. His column appears Monday. He can be reached at 770-478-5753 or jboron@news-daily.com .