Snap, Crackle, Pop Stupidity

Do you remember the cute and very merry Rice Krispies commercials starring:

Snap, Crackle and Pop? The ever so endearing, soft, sizzling sound of cereal & milk sweetly commingling represented the medley of happy food talking, if only it could; delighting children of all ages.

Unfortunately, a similar sound is let loose daily. It has nothing to do with imaginary gnomes or grains of rice cereal merging with milk. This dreadful snap is obnoxious, nose wrinkling and displeasing to the ears. It can turn even the most tranquil among us into moaning malcontents. It’s the handiwork of stupers (short for insatiably stupid persons).

My mother and I were shopping at Saks Fifth Avenue. The store near us is boutique sized and sports glossy marble floors. The kind where the slightest sound is amplified.

A sale was going on. I left Mom in one department while I made a phone call. Mom is usually quite mellow and good-natured.

Upon my return, I found her incensed, breathing rapidly and scowling in aggravation. As you may’ve guessed, she’d encountered a stuper. Not just a standard irritating stuper, but the gum-chewing variety.

“I was browsing the sale rack when suddenly I’m elbowed by this… person who insists on looking in the exact same spot in the rack as me even though there are about 5000 other clothes to look at. And to top it off, she is chewing and snapping her gum so loudly, I’m surprised I can still hear. I just wanted to shake her!”

I could see a steady stream of homicidal thoughts flowing through her mind. Allowing stupers to chew gum in Saks is like permitting pre-schoolers to tour the place while dragging along tiny feet tucked in Mama’s six-inch heels. Tripping and tapping all over the place. It should be banned.

I decided to investigate. I searched for the offender. Snapping and smacking sounds, not unlike those pouring forth from a malfunctioning cap gun, emanated from the lingerie department. Several annoyed shoppers rapidly fled the scene. I knew I’d found my stuper.

She was a hearty chomper, in her sixties, nicely dressed and attractive. Her appearance belied the stupidity that lay beneath.

The smell of stale spearmint wafted through the room. While I stood next to her, there was silence for three seconds. Then suddenly she emitted a cacophony of smacking and popping culminated by a bubble the size of an infant’s fist. A mad crescendo of bubble bursting followed. “SNAP! SNAP! POP!” Like a pair of hands clapping next to my ear. There must have been four wads stuffed in her trap.

Are public floggings still available? I read that in Saudi Arabia, 200 lashes were given in 2005 to “men behaving like women.” What about the same for those who smack and pop chewing gum in confined spaces where members of the public are present and royally annoyed? If cigarette smoking indoors, in public places, is banned in California, then so should gum smacking. Upon entering the mouth, chewing gum should neither be seen or heard again (barring an emergency situation).

I stared at this stuper to see if any shred of awareness of her vile habit existed. She stared back, seemingly chewing her cud all the while. The display was so hideous, I’m certain backwoods people would not engage in such snapping even if they had teeth.

It wanted to say, “Cut the crap,” then slip on a surgical glove (which I carry in my purse for stuper moments like this), pry open her mouth and yank out the glob, but I was a bit frightened of what else I’d find in there.

Is it possible that some meager minds estimate their value by the amount of irritation they cause to greater minds? I will have to ponder this matter further.

Should you be forced to occupy the same time and space as a smacking, snapping, popping stuper, find an exit immediately. Or offer them a piece of hard candy. Sucking sounds might be more tolerable. Or print out the picture below and use it as a sign. Meanwhile, I’ll start a petition to bring back flogging.

No creature smarts so little as a fool. ~Alexander Pope

Keep thinking!


5 Responses to “Snap, Crackle, Pop Stupidity”

  1. Julianne says:

    Gum chewing is a huge pet peeve of mine. It is the primary reason that I loathe Britney Spears.

  2. Elaine says:

    We best get ready because the stupers will be out in full force one the holiday shopping begins. It is amazing what you encounter in stores (even upscale ones), it’s appalling the lack of manners some people have.

  3. Agnes Mildew says:

    Urgh. My sentiments exactly. My own flesh and blood are gum snappers – but not in my vicinity…All gum, chewy, bubbly etc is completely banned when Agnes is about. I despise it: I despise watching seemingly ‘intelligent’ people chewing the cud like cattle, then snapping, popping and blowing bubbles. I feel my IQ draining away as I watch their daft faces grinding repetitively. Hideous invention. Eat a carrot instead…

  4. MyDen says:

    Hi keli,

    I find people chewing gum downright disgusting and the “popping” and “smacking” sounds are irritating, especially when they are next to me on a train or in a cinema. I will never understand the “joys” of chewing gum.

  5. dan says:

    bring back flogging for those digusting gum chewers and those who wear their trousers so low you can see the underwear and sometime their bare backside as their underwear as too been pushed down

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