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It is all about the crunch
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 OK, I admit it.  I’m a snackaholic. The other day, I counted the number of snack items we have in our home. Twenty different and distinct items were either on the kitchen counter or in the cabinet … and that did not include the three healthy snacks in our refrigerator.  
I don’t remember being a big snacker as a kid. Oh, I would eat the occasional ice cream sundae from the dairy bar down the street, and we always had ice cream in the freezer. Come to think of it, I had a lot of ice cream as a kid — but that’s more of a dessert item, don’t you think?
Pretzels were high on my list back then and still are. You don’t grow up in Pennsylvania Dutch Country and not be introduced to a pretzel or two.  Charlie the Chip Man, as we called him, would drive a truck around town and deliver pretzels and chips right to your doorstep. Ahhh, those were the days. We used to get the biggest can of pretzels we could buy.
I remember our summer trip to Canada one year. Mom and Dad stuck this gigantic can of pretzels between my sister and me so we would not fight or argue during the trip. Hard to imagine you could get a pretzel can that size in the back of a Volkswagen Bug with luggage and two other people.  When we drove across the line into Canada, the border patrol inquired as to what was in the pretzel can.
“Uh, pretzels” we answered.  
You couldn’t get away with a can of pretzels that size nowadays.  Homeland Security would be all over that.
The thing I like most about snacking is the crunch. The bigger the crunch, the better the snack. I guess that’s why I’m attracted to certain types of chips … OK, just about all types of chips. But I do prefer the baked chips over the regular chips. You gotta eat healthy if you’re gonna snack a lot; plus, the baked chips have more crunch. I see you’re catching on.
Does cereal count as a snack?  If so, bump that number from above to 26.  Yes, we have at least six boxes of cereal in our house, and yes, I’m the only one that eats the stuff. I can’t help myself. There’s nothing better than a crunchy bowl of cereal before bedtime, or at breakfast, or a little after lunch but before supper. Sometimes, I’ll have a bowl for dessert; it’s got to be better for you than ice cream, right?  I hear the Europeans have a real liking for cereal too. I’m sure my family tree has some European roots. Bring on the muesli.
I have to confess that what I put in my cereal has taken snacking to all-time level. It’s almost scary at times. Forget the ho-hum banana or strawberries — how about crunchy peanut butter, Cheese-Its and Wheat Thins? And don’t forget the dark chocolate semi-sweets — the little ones of course. We have to be calorie-conscious.
My addiction to things that go crunch in the night has become more prevalent in my older age. I’m not sure why that is, but I blame TV for my snacking habits. Well, that’s an article for another day.  
Hey, all this writing is making me hungry. Somewhere out there is a pita chip with my name on it.  Make it a “crunchy” day!

DeLong is the executive director for The Suites at Station Exchange.  Email to

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