I just read the New York Times‘ obituary of Curtis Allina, the candy company executive who died at 87 on Dec. 15 and was instrumental in putting the heads on Pez dispensers. Here are a few pieces of Pez trivia that I found slightly more tantalizing than lemon-flavored Pez: (1) The first Pez, in 1927 Austria, were mint-flavored and the name came from the German word Pfefferminz; (2) Pez has inspired a museum, a movie, and this one guy to cover an entire car in dispensers; (3) Flip-top Pez dispensers were modeled after cigarette lighters in hopes that the candy would provide an alternative to smoking. I wonder which Pez dispenser Don Draper would use (WPDWDDU?) if he suddenly had to quit. I’m thinking either Lisa Simpson Pez or Donatello from TMNT Pez. Then again, a simple, black Darth Vader dispenser is classic and would go with all outfits from all decades, except these.
What’s been your favorite Pez dispenser over the years? You’re probably cool and own a retired Peanuts Pez or a vintage 1970s Fireman Pez – no feet. Mine was pretty boring: the Daisy Duck one I carried around during high school. Goofy would have been a more appropriate character for me, but I liked that Daisy had a purple base instead of orange. I was so much gayer in high school. I especially liked dispensing Pez once every seven minutes during AP U.S. History because it felt like I was methodically dosing myself with magic pills to get me through the hour. I thought strawberry Pez went very nicely with a can of Mountain Dew. I also had Yoshi but ended up giving him away to a girl who was better at Super Mario Land than me. Out of respect.