An American Editor

December 19, 2012

Saying Goodbye to the Twinkie Defense

Filed under: A Humor Interlude — americaneditor @ 4:00 am
Tags: , , ,

Not every editing job goes smoothly. Occasionally, I find that I think I did an outstanding job only to hear from the client about the problems the client discovered. Of course, I always fix my errors at no charge, so that is not a problem, but I have several times defended my lapse by saying I must have eaten one Twinkie too many while editing the book.

Now I can no longer claim the Twinkie defense with the end of Twinkie production as a result of Hostess Baking going out of business.

For younger editors, I suspect that Twinkies are an unknown quantity. They are simply angel food cake wrapped around a creme filling that is loaded with sugar. Twinkies are the original sugar high for baby boomers. Like most “miscreants” I simply grasped at any defense as a way to justify my actions (in this case, lack of doing what the client expected), and so it was the Twinkie defense.

It is well known that sugar highs cause people to do strange, weird things. What could be weirder than a topnotch editor like myself missing what should have been an obvious error? Alas, I will now have to own up, I’ll have to confess to misjudgment. Definitely not a good thing to do.

At the same time, I will cry over my grandchildren not being able to defend their misbehavior using the Twinkie defense. I was already prepping my granddaughter by whispering, when her parents’ backs were turned, “Twinkie, Twinkie” — and if caught, I could easily respond that I was saying “twinkle, twinkle” as in “twinkle, twinkle, little star.” But no more. Now my grandchildren will be defenseless and have to face the dire consequences without a good defense.

The Twinkie was the ideal vehicle for excessive sugar ingestion. The Twinkie defense was also the best defense against a lot of misdeeds. Alas, the time has come to say a final goodbye to Twinkies and my Twinkie defense –

Goodbye!

5 Comments »

  1. Thank you for a much-needed chuckle!

    Comment by Ruth E. Thaler-Carter — December 19, 2012 @ 9:34 am | Reply

  2. Where can I buy the last 1000 Twinkies in the world? My intentions are chaste – they are a legacy for my grandchildren – uh, that is, mmm, if they (the divine Twinkies, I mean) last that long!

    Comment by Zarine — December 20, 2012 @ 12:36 am | Reply

  3. Thanks for the muppetts, and farewell to a cultural icon.. though somehow I suspect someone will buy the rights and we’ll see them again. Along with the Dingdongs, Snowballs, Formerly Hostess Cupcakes, Ho Hos, and other scary sugar vehicles… :)

    Comment by anansii — December 20, 2012 @ 1:23 am | Reply

  4. Those living outside the San Francisco Bay Area wouldn’t know this, but “Twinkies defense” has a horrifying connotation. It was the tag used when a former San Francisco supervisor (Dan White) claimed a “sugar rush” defense in his trial for the assassination of the mayor (George Moscone) and the city’s first openly gay supervisor (Harvey Milk). You can read an account on Wikipedia, for starters.

    Comment by Amy Einsohn — December 21, 2012 @ 2:33 pm | Reply

  5. So basically, Dan White was a San Francisco city superisor who had recently resigned for reasons unknown. A few weeks later, he entered San Francisco city hall through a basement window, and shot and killed the mayor, Georgia Moscone, and his supervisor Harvey Milk. During the trial, his lawyer had a psychologist come in and reinforce the fact that he was not guilty by saying that Dan had been depressed for a long time, and he ate junk food to make himself feel better. Mainly Coca Cola and Twinkies. Since he had been an ex athlete on a rigorous training schedule and a very strict diet, he knew that the extra crap wasn’t good for him. This only made his depression worse, and he kind of… snapped because of the Twinkies, and went on a killing spree. Basically, when someone says that something is/is like a twinkie defense, it pretty much means that they’re BSing an excuse.

    Comment by Benjamin Hill — January 11, 2013 @ 10:02 pm | Reply


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