Hostess Was Not a Snack Food. It Way a Way of Life

by Bruce Owens on November 17, 2012

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The death of Hostess is making me very reflective of my youth. I was fortunate enough to have grown-up down the block from a Hostess Outlet store. The store was located near Harcourt News where I would pick up the newspapers for my daily paper-route.

The Twinkie is a delicious snack but chocolate addiction would always steer me to the 12¢ discounted packs of sugar filled Yodels. High as a kite on sugar I would climb on my Huffy Thunder Road sans helmet, with the wind in my hair as I pedaled down the busiest through-way in town. Tossing the local rag onto lawns as I made my way back home.

As a teen, it would be that same Hostess building where my friends and I would congregate for weekend beers. Hostess served as the perfect hiding spot as we sipped on Haffenreffer Malt Liquor pre-gaming for the movies or arcade. Following the train tracks from Hostess to downtown we forged friendships that have lasted to today. We shared laughs I pray will never fade from my memories.

Driving through my old hometown these days everything seems unfamiliar. The movie theater shut down years ago. The last time I saw the arcade it was a gaping hole in the ground, prepped for some kind of urban redevelopment. Even Harcourt News where I picked up my afternoon newspapers is gone. Still, there was one constant, the Hostess Outlet Store – until now.

Last night I had what will most likely be my last Yodel, this morning a somber send off to a Drake’s Coffee Cake with my morning tea. I do not think Hostess closing is what I find most distressing. I feel sad for the generations of kids that will never deliver a newspaper, ride a bike without a helmet, and enjoy a summer day high-as-a-kite on Yodels.

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