Ghetto Snacks

18 11 2008

Good morning everybody.  Before you’re done with me, let me explain!! What had happened was….

No seriously.  I thought yesterday was gonna be a light one, cause I make it a practice not to do much work on Monday (or any day for that matter), but Mr. Charlie had some crucial tasks that needed to be done from the instant I arrived, and like a good house negro, I did my job.

Anyway, this post here is one that I did before, but there must have been some ghost in the machine that deleted it when I tried to save it.  I put so much into it, that I didn’t feel like doing the entire thing over.  So here it goes one mo gin…

I titled this one “Ghetto Snacks” because I first thought about candy, but I knew I’d do the hood a disservice by not mentioning other snacks.  Now when I say snacks and candy in the ghetto, these are things that when I was little I could get at the little hole in the wall store around the corner, or from the fixture in the black neighborhood, the Candy Lady.  I feel a little sorry for the affluent caucasian kids that lived in their gated communities and went to their private schools, because the convenience stores weren’t as plentiful.  But as I type this, it occured to me that this could be a consipiracy to start black children on the path to be unhealthy adults.  In the words of Arsenio Hall from the greatest nighttime show ever, this is something that makes you say “HMMMMMMMM…..”

There was a 7-11 around the corner from my house, that had to be like the first 7-11  in the city.  The sign was some old ass “7 to 11” sign, with the “to” written in cursive and the numbers were in a burgundy color with the rest of the sign white.  I think that sign is still there, but I don’t think it’s a convenience store anymore.  Anyway, it was poorly lit, with one flourescent bulb over the front counter, and that was it. The rest of it might as well been in someone’s closet, it was so dark.  But the candy and snacks were all clustered around where that only light was, so you never needed to venture to the other parts to get anything else.  So you may be wondering what the top ghetto snacks and candy were?  I’m sure if you thought, you know them all..

#1 Now and Laters:  When I was little I thought the name of the candy was “Nowlaters”  because that’s how everybody pronounced it.  As a matter of fact, down south, we still do.  It wasn’t until I got about 16 or 17 that I discovered there was an “and” in there!  Here is a pic of modern day Now or Laters:

I say modern day because when I was a kid, they didn’t come in this fancy wrapping.  They were just in wrapped in wax paper, like this:

My favorite flavor was green apple, and next was watermelon.  I remember they had mystery mix nowlaters that had one half dayglo yellow and the other half purple.  They named them right because I could never figure out what they tasted like.

#2 Blow Pops

Who doesn’t like blow pops?  If you don’t,  you may be mildly retarded.  Sh!t, you may even be full retard.  The trick with blow pops is concealing the stick so that the teacher doesn’t see you.  The best part about blow pops is just when there is a thin candy coating over the bubble gum, so you can bite down, and chew bubble gum mixed with candy coating. Unfortunately, that sugary bliss lasts approximately 60 seconds, because once you are left with only the gum, you find that you are left with some of the weakest bubble gum ever.  As a matter of fact, how can they even call it a Blow Pop?  That’s not even enough gum to blow a damn bubble!  And on top of that, the gum is all grainy feeling, and can’t even stretch and hold itself together!  Yeah, that name is deceiving.  My favorite flavor was green apple and watermelon (something about those watermelons…guess that shows how black I am!)


#3 box candies

Lemon Heads, Johnny Apple Treats (I thought they were Johnny Appleseeds), Alexander the Grapes, and Red Hots. I lumped these in one category, because I don’t know which was more popular.  Personally, I don’t like cinammon candy or gum, nor do I like spicy stuff, so I’ll pass on the Red Hots.  As for lemon heads, they were cool, but once you suck the lemon stuff off of the outside and get to whatever that nasty buttery tasting nugget sh!t in the center was, it makes me want to puke every time, so I don’t f*ck with lemon heads at all.  I don’t think the other two had that buttery nugget thing, and depending on the day, I liked one or the other better.




the candy on the top, sorry this pic came like this

the candy on the top, sorry this pic came like this

 Hey, peep that “A Fat Free Food”, like that makes a difference! See that’s a trick of the man, trying to get fat people to look at the candy and be like “Ooooh this is fat free, so I can eat all I want!”   I peeped your game Mr. Charlie.

that buttery nugget sh!t is gross

that buttery nugget sh!t is gross

I dont do cinnamon candy

I don't do cinnamon candy

As you can see Ferrara Pan ruled the hood with their candy concoctions, but there are some other candies I’d like to mention…

Honorable Mention

BIG BOL gum…. This was a usual suspect when I went trick or treating as a kid.  To this day I don’t know what the aim of the name for this candy was.  Do they mean, that this was a big BALL of candy coated gum that you were going to chew?  If you’re familiar with the candy, you’d know that they are anything but big, they are pretty small.  The other alternative is that they really meant to spell it Big BLO and someone messed up in printing, and after they made the first batch, they thought “well, ghetto kids don’t care how it’s spelled, and it’s too much trouble to change it, so f*ck it, let’s roll with BIG BOL.”  This has to be one of the tastiest candy/gum combinations ever, but at the same time, as you might suspect, when you are left with just the gum, the thrill is GONE!!




The last candy I’m mentioning is one called Jingles.  I don’t know anyone who knows this candy.  I only got it at one place too.  There was a fish market around the corner that I would walk to that had it.  Imagine a pack of candies, similar to Nowlaters, but half the size.  So they were 6 little squares of candy in a wrapper with a little cartoon man playing a banjo.  They were better than nowlaters too because the flavor wasn’t as biting, and they were softer too.  They had flavors like banana too, and every one was delicious.  I miss Jingles.   I couldn’t even find a pic of them. 😦


I bet ya’ll are thinking, “Damn, Cord is on a roll today!”  Well I gotta make up for my being absent, so I hope you’re enjoying this trip down memory lane.  Anyway, I don’t know the popularity of snacks so much because snacks make noise, so they made appearances few and far between in school.  Usually you’d only get to have some if you had a girl in the class with a big ass pocketbook that you were cool with.  I had a few of those, and they were always sneaking snacks in class because they stopped by the store on the way to the bus stop that morning.  I’ll give it a try.

#1 Doritos – does anything need to be said about Doritos?  I’d go as far to say that it’s America’s chip, and not just a ghetto treat.  But I mention Doritos because I can remember when COOL RANCH DORITOS came out.  There are a whole lot more flavor options nowadays when it comes to food, but this definitely was something special because there was only plain doritos.  I used to eat them, and lick the cool ranch goodness off my fingers afterwards:

Funyons – this is just a super ghetto chip.  Onion flavored fried junk.  In finding this pic (sorry it’s so tiny), I saw a picture that was a bag of Funyons with Wasabi flavor!  We don’t know what wasabi is in the hood!!!

Super Ghetto

Super Ghetto

Pickles – this is actually a healthy treat, but it was ghetto nonetheless.  I can think back to being in middle school and the pregnant teens walking through the halls with their bellies all big and a pickle in hand.  Yes, this was my middle school, and yes we had pregnant girls that went there. 


Chick-O-Stick – I never got with the Chick O Stick.  whenever someone ate one, it made their mouth look nasty like they ate some doo doo.  Also, why did it have to be so orange??  Then it had coconut going on in it, and Cord doesn’t really dig bits of coconut at all. Almond Joy is terrible, and remember those multicolored coconut bars that looked like rainbows or something. Horrible. I’d rather eat vegetables before I ate one of those.


Now I can’t leave this post without mentioning the ghetto sodas. We black folk like fruit flavors, I mean, look at kool aid?? NUFF SAID.  Is it that white folk don’t like fruit flavored sodas?  I always wondered that.  I mean, Fried Chicken fast food restaurants are the only places where you can get strawberry and grape soda! 

I’m not gonna post the pictures of all the sodas. You know what they are though, Nugrape, Orange Soda (Sunkist?), and Nehi in Strawberry and Peach.  I would like to give a shout out to FAYGO!!  Faygo was as ghetto as you can get.  When I was 15 and lifeguarding, this little girl from the neighborhood used to bring me a bag of salt and vinegar potato chips and a faygo to the pool everyday.  You could get a 16oz Faygo for 33 cents!! Now how hood is that!!!  Faygo was extremely strong and would feel like it’s ripping your throat up if you tried to guzzle it, but it felt great!  The problem is, though, that the strength of that carbonation would maybe last 3 minutes, and then it lost a lot of punch. Wait thirty minutes, and you might as well left that soda in an open cup in the refrigerator overnight.


So come everybody, walk down memory lane and tell the class what your favorite junk food was from growing up!




34 responses

18 11 2008

This is an easy one… my all time favorites were pixie sticks and devil dogs! but the pixie sticks especially. When I was a little girl, my grandmother used to send me, my sister and my cousin (all the same age) to the corner store in Newark, NJ to get her some Pall Mall cigarettes, Halls mentolyptos (yes I can’t spell) and then give us like 25 cents each to get some penny candy. We would get pixie sticks, now or laters, hot tamales… anything we could fit in to a bag and just eat candy the rest of the day…. good times 🙂

9 03 2015
Elijah Mcallister

I’m from Newark as well I grew up in Baxter Terrace. I remember those good candy times.

18 11 2008

Hellooo, sugar daddies, mary janes and squirrel nuts. Nugrape soda was the joint.

19 11 2008

Faygo is the hot shyt!!! And don’t get me started on Big Bols!! I used to buy them from Honey Babe’s candy store on my way to the bus stop. Those were the good old days when $1 could get you as much as 100 pieces of candy!!!

19 11 2008

Being from near Philly, my favorite snack growing up were Tastykake Butterscotch Krimpets, followed closely by their chocolate cupcakes. Favorite soda was Dr. Pepper. It wasn’t a ghetto brand, but it tasted good after smoking a joint.

7 12 2008

Who here remembers that Big Bol used to come in two flavors??? There was an orange flavor that kind of tasted like baby aspirin…Back when they were three for a penny (yes, I’m dating myself) they were my poison of choice. I’d come out of the store with 150 original flavor, 150 orange, all for a dollar! And if the store owner’s lazy nephew was at the counter, I really got over, because he didn’t feel like counting – He’d just stick his big old mitts in that jar and give me a couple of handfuls of each – I once ended up with 360+ pieces of candy…There were also Coconut Long Boys (which I never saw once I left the South) and the best ghetto sodas of all, Piggly Wiggly supermarket brand. If I was ballin’, I would splurge on Dr. Pepper. And you can’t talk about ghetto snacks without bigging up Fla-Vor-Ice. This icee was almost long as your arm, and they were ten cents apiece. My favorite were the green and the blue, and I will still go in the bodega to this day and buy every green and blue icee in the freezer.

22 04 2009

I always enjoyed anything marked SAVE and in a yellow package. Fried fruit pies at the end of the isle.

12 07 2009


17 10 2009

I remember Jingles. I can’t find them anywhere. I wish we could get a hold of some for old time sakes. I loved strawberry.

23 02 2010
MS Scientist

Man! Where did Jingles go??? I loved them too, because they were so soft and the flavor was not so sour… I miss Jingles!

Oh and I loved me some Big Bols. I also think they just made a mistake in the name and it just stuck.

Alexander the grape!! Yeah!

26 02 2010

I went to middle school in Liberty City (Miami, FL) in the 80s.
There was a little store across a 4 lane road that we would run to before school (if my bus ever got me there before the bell rang) that sold hot sausages, those vinegar soaked bright pink sausages that everyone walked around gnawing on, Tom’s salt and vinegar potato chips, airheads… and then there was the peach soda in a generic looking peach can, whose brand I cannot remember, which is what actually led me here, looking for it.

15 09 2010

im looking for the old candy named, Jingles, these are little small square candy something like a Now & Later, but they have a totally different taste. Grape was my favorite flavor..PLEASE HELP ME FIND THEM…Jingles

31 10 2010

OMFG!!! Jingles are my favorite. I haavent had them since i was about 10 and I am now 29 and cant find them anywhere…..smh if there not on the internet then they must not make them anymore 😦 If anyone has any info PLEASE POST!!!

10 03 2012

Man, I love this candy article! I stumbled on here because I tried to Google jingles! They also had a blue pack, blueberry. They were 5 cents a pack. Way better than nowlaters 🙂 I’ve been looking for these 4 years now! No luck 😦 only people in my age group know about this candy. Lol, I’m going on 38

2 08 2012
Phoenix Rising

The reason I came across this website is because, I grew up in the hood on JINGLES and “na’nlaters”!!! Here in Miami, thats how we said “now and laters”…. I was hoping to see a picture, for nostalgia’s sake!!! Thanks for acknowledging them. People hardly remember them!

30 08 2012

Jingles, Jingles, Jingles OMG I thought I was the only one! Someone finds them please let me know where. They were much better than Now & Laters. I used to sell them in Jr. High School.

7 03 2013
lil evil

I’m sooo glad someone remembers Jingles! I was starting to think I made them up because nobody remembered them. They were waaaay better than now & laters. I was hoping you had a picture of them 😦

7 03 2013

I miss Jingles!!! I remember getting them in middle school in Ft. lauderdale from the local “Storehouse.” I’m living GA now and no one I have asked knows about them. I also miss the hot sausages Jodee mentioned. My cousin has a friend who missed them so much, she ordered a jar!

12 05 2017
sherri teague

hey kammi… im from ft. lauderdale too. and im glad i came across this post bcuz nobody knos what jingles are!!! i went to rogers middle school when we used to be able to find jingles back in the day. oh well but im 44 now.

9 09 2013
Tina faye

I remember Jingles too, I am from a town called Pine Bluff and would get them from a candy lady close to my middle school. The people around me have no idea what I am talking about. Those were surly a childhood favorite of mine.

20 01 2014

Omg you remeber jingles to. I am so excited no one know what im talking about when I mention jingles. I loved them and I have been searching for them every where. How can anyone forget such good candy….lol

1 03 2014

I may be the only one that remembers Jingles. Whenever I find a new penny candy store, I check to see if they have ’em. Man I miss my Jingles….the good ole days!!

9 03 2015
Elijah Mcallister

They discontinued jingles. My favorite was Orange and Apple.

8 04 2015

I lived in Palm Beach Florida and went to an Elementary school named Roosevelt Elementary. I would walk to the corner store and get a pack of jingles for 5 cents a pack in the 70s. I loved them I would pop them in one after another. I have been wanting some forever 😦

14 04 2015

I remember those jingles and loved the blue ones. I think about them everyday and have tried searching for them, hoping the maker stashed away a huge quantity of them. You are right, I haven’t met anyone but my husband, who has the faintest idea about jingles. I loved them as a child. Wish they would bring them back.

27 12 2016

those were my FAVORITE !!! I have been searching for them as well, no 1 remembers them….I wish I could find them…..

31 05 2015

I loved Jingles! They were better than now laters. They had more creative flavors, such as passion fruit. Got them in DC back in the day at the neighborhood storehouse.

19 11 2015

I remember the jingles as well and that is what brought me here looking for those. They don’t even mention the candy when 80 candies are being listed. I wish they were around today or at that one store I could purchase them. Oh I miss being a kid.

15 02 2017
Eric B

I loved jingles. The brothers from pompano used to sell them at Margate Middle . I liked them so much better than Now and Laters and we could not find them in Margate anywhere . Someinementioned the blue ones and they were the best. Those were the passionfruit I think and they were better than Now and Laters because they were softer and had better flavors. Really wish I could find them now because I still eat candies like that. Mambas are pretty close. And yes, I looked em up on the Internet which is how I stumbled upon this. Great memories. I had to show this to a guy that grew up in pompano that didn’t remember them so he wouldn’t think I was crazy.

14 04 2016
Duffy Bronx

I remember going to IS131 in the Bronx and after school hitting up the candy trucks for Jingles, Boston Baked Beans, and Chik o Sticks.

3 09 2016
Eric B

I remember jingles and I actually loved them also. The kids from pompano that went to margate middle school were the only ones that had them and I would trade away my now and laters for them. Passionfruit and kiwi were addictive as hell. I wish they were around as well, but that’s how I found this blog because I was searching for them.

15 11 2016

Omg i was and still am looking for jingles!!! My all time fave!!!

12 11 2017

Definitely remember Jingles. They were popular in D.C. back in the late 80’s early 90’s.

8 07 2018
Ericka Willis

Where ya been Corduroy?

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