’s office smells like Thera-Flu and Ricola. Tissues and cough drop wrappers litter the desks. Our kitchen cabinets are bereft of soup bowls.
Yes, like many local businesses, the last two weeks have hit us hard. Having exhausted all remedies animal, vegetable and mineral, we were beginning to lose hope.
Then, just this morning, we received a press release announcing that local cupcake bakery Saint Cupcake has just released the Sniffle-Slayer lollipop
, a nasal-clearing lemon, ginger and cayenne sucker.
“Cold suffers, let’s fight back this year!” the release said. “These lollipops are a tasty way to fight off that icky feeling. The little guys were even locally tested and each tester reported back to instantly have clearer nasal passages!”
Surely, this miracle cure would work for us, too. We immediately dispatched a WW intern to pick up five at 75 cents each. (The intern ignored our claims that pure sugar has no curative properties, and insisted we buy him a Salty Captain cupcake for his troubles. We did.)
So what does the Sniffle-Slayer taste like and how well does it slay sniffles? Here are notes from five participants in an unofficial medical study conducted this afternoon. To comply with HIPAA regulations and the hippocratic oath, we have concealed their identities.
Medical Study Participant 1
Please describe the flavor: A cup of herbal tea with a mysterious dash of hot sauce. As I get further in, it's more lemony, which I like. Had I not been drinking Aztec Sweet chili tea all morning, I might enjoy this more, but it's not as sweet or spicy as my tea.
Do you feel healthier? No, I feel exactly the same.
Medical Study Participant 2
Please describe the flavor: Not sure where the lemon or ginger are. I’m tasting all sweet chili, like those scorpion-containing lollipops you get from roadside gift shops. The tiny bits of cayenne give a sandy texture, and I can’t help biting them off and chewing them to increase the heat.
Do you feel healthier? Fuck, no, this does nothing for a cough. My throat is on fire and I’m still coughing.
Medical Study Participant 3
Please describe the flavor: The existential crisis of this candy cough drop love child is honestly very distracting. But, I like the cayenne finish and hints of ginger. It's just enough spicy and just enough sweet, with a healthy dose of childhood nostalgia. Pairs well with minty gum.
Do you feel healthier? Yes, but the post-pop coffee promptly voided that.
Medical Study Participant 4
Please describe the flavor: Like a honey lemon Ricola—but hold the echinacea and add a few dashes of chili. Lacks the ginger kick of those delicious candy chews. On the upside, an accidental sharp intake of air resulted in an impressively fiery sensation in my throat.
Do you feel healthier? My tongue still tingles a little bit and I just blew my nose, though I can't say my sinuses are magically empty. I'd rather Neti Pot—or just cross the Columbia for some pseudoephedrine.
Medical Study Participant 5
Please describe the flavor: Lozenge on a stick.
Do you feel healthier? I feel significantly worse.