I wasn't compelled to try Ben & Jerry's Schweddy Balls. When it was announced that the flavor homage to Alec Baldwin's now-famous (though not as funny as Canteen Boy) sketch would be released to coincide with the actor returning to host the SNL season premiere last September, I laughed a little, wrote up a post and was ready to move on.
I didn't feel the need to actually go out of my way to seek it out. But then came the uproar. A group of citizens took offense at the double entendre and scared some grocery stores enough that they purposely held back the Schweddy Balls.
Now, I had to find it. And it didn't take much to do so. The local Ben & Jerry scoop shop had it. A big sticker on the window announced it had Schweddy Balls in stock. It seemed like the shop was ready to cash in on the controversy and touted its scarceness.
How was it? It had a lot going on for a scoop of ice cream . . . a bit too much. At one point, I remarked to my group of friends that I had too many balls in my mouth. They rolled their eyes. You can't resist making such quips. That's the whole point.
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In truth, the ice cream could've done better with less of the fudge balls, which were tasteless, dull and waxy. The malted ones, however, crunched like miniature Whoppers. What was good was the ice cream itself, which was laced with the slight sting of rum that made it taste similar to egg nog ice cream. Before long, even that became cloying, as egg nog always tend to be.
But what's notable here is that we again see another instance of what I'll dub the Married . . . With Children effect. The FOX show was getting decent ratings until one woman in Michigan called for a boycott, citing it was indecent and lewd. Then it really took off, eventually becoming the longest-running sitcom in the network's history, lasting 11 seasons.
It proved that, just like Schweddy Balls, controversy always makes irresistible something that was marginally interesting.