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Whizing Through Life: A Tribute to the Cheez Whiz King

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Message Sandy Sand
Edwin Traisman, 91, the inventer of Cheez Whiz and McDonald's secret process for freezing French fries died this week. But while Edwin dines in some fast-food franchise in the sky, his legacy continues to be withering away on tasteless life-support.

This relates to me and my family, because for most of the year my family has suffered from KDS - Kitchen Deprivation Syndrome. For what seems like a Traisman-lifetime, my kitchen has been in a continuous state of remodel, rendering us captive to microwavables, spreadables, fast-foodables, takeoutables and restaurants.

To my great dismay, fast-food just ain't what it used to be...except health wise. More specifically, less unhealthful. And with it, apologies to Traisman, less...far less, tasty.

I don't know about you, but I haven't eaten a really good tasting meal from any restaurant -- fast food or not -- or frozen food, packaged cookies, or kiddie snacks like cream-filled cupcakes and lady fingers that taste as good as they used to.

Don't tell me it's because as we get older we lose taste buds, or our memories play tricks on us, because my kids say the same thing. It's plain and simple. Food just doesn't taste like it used to, because the food police made them take ALL THE GOOD STUFF out!

I'm not a food history buff, but Cheez Whiz just might have marked the beginning of the killing us (kindly) with fast, easy to prepare foodly kindness. Ever read the label? Once you get beyond the essence of cheese, water, salt and anonymous flavorings, everything else is twenty-seven letter words that are written in some foreign chemical language.

Mm-m-m-m. I wonder if every one of those chemicals include a "delicious" component, or are they there to give the food a 99-year shelf-life along with us?

Yet, despite the obvious benefits of his food's inventions -- preserved in preservatives, Traisman lived to ninety-one, -- the food police continue to go after those mysterious unpronounceable ingredients printed in letters so tiny you need the Hubble Telescope to read them.

If those chemicals are truly "silent killers," why hasn't every ex-husband or wife plotted their "worser" half's demise by plying them with frequent mega meals from their favorite take-out incubating and reproducing along every other inch of every main drag of every city and town in the country.

Better yet, how about a gift case of Cheez Whiz?

In actuality, the food police are going after the "real" ingredients that make food taste good -- cocoanut oil and sat-fats. Of course there's always the possibility that Traisman's longevity was due to the fact that he never ate his own food. But I don't care!

I want my cocoanut oil, lard and whatever else made food taste good put back. Lorna Doone cookies, one of my absolute all-time favorites, taste crumby now, because they removed the cocoanut oil or lard or butter.

Put it back! Pleeeeeze! Because, now they're not worth either the money or the wasted calories. If you put back the lard, Lorna, I promise I won't eat an entire bag at one sitting. Never have; never will. I have self-control, and if everyone exercised some self-control and weren't pigging-out all the time, I could have my Doones back the way they should be...and my Taco Bell...and my cream-filled cupcakes...and all my favorite foods, fast or otherwise.

I believe that we've jumped too fast to know what's in food that's really good and really bad for us. Perhaps while we were scarfing up flavorful silent killers, Trainsman was vegging out.

The truth is that all the stats aren't in yet. Kind of like Global Warming. So as the contractor puts the finishing touches on my kitchen, I know that my case of KDS will soon be healed by medicating myself with food I've prepared by using my favorite life-killing, taste-enhancing ingredients.

In the mean time, in an effort to control what we eat and make us live longer, the food police will continue to force us to suffering through tasteless meals that only make it seem like we're living longer.

So, until they stop knocking down our kitchen doors and trying to pull so-called life-threatening tastes from our mouths, I urge you all -- as our own little memorial to Edwin Traisman - spray the Cheez Whiz directly from the can into your mouth. If we're going to go down, let us go down deliciously.
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Sandy Sand began her writing career while raising three children and doing public relations work for Women's American ORT (Organization for Rehabilitation through Training). That led to a job as a reporter for the San Fernando Valley Chronicle, a (more...)
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