“Home Brew”

Inspired by a writer from New Zealand who said years ago all soft drinks were called fizzy drinks, I remembered Fizzies. Fizzies were small flavored tablet that you dropped in a glass of water. Then you watched them fizz and turn the water the flavor’s color. I read about their history before I posted this and sure enough they were invented by a drug company which added flavor to Bromo-Seltzer. They used saccharine to make the drink sweet and had to change the formula when the effects of saccharine on mice were troubling.(I guess they never worried about the effect on kids of drinking this stuff!) My siblings and I really couldn’t stand the taste even though we really enjoyed watching the tablets dissolve.

The other novelty we insisted our mother buy for us was Flav-R-Straws. These paper straws had a core of either strawberry or chocolate powder. As you sipped your milk, it was flavored by the powder. The ad above amuses me as it promises to get children to drink more milk. I laugh because I have a very distinct memory of getting violently ill after two strawberry Flav-R-Straw glasses of milk. I swore off Flav-R-Straws for good and even avoided milk for quite a while. It turns out Flav-R-Straws also used saccharine.

We stuck with Kool-Aid, sweetened with the real stuff–sugar. Who could resist a tall glass of sweet red water?



26 thoughts on ““Home Brew”

  1. Fizzies were really great. Root beer was the most interesting flavor because you could make you own root beer. I had forgotten about those straws but I sure do remember candy cigarettes.


  2. I remember my family buying Lemon Blend years ago. It came in gallon glass jugs, and you mixed it with water to dilute it. To me it was like pure corn syrup. I couldn’t stand it, but my brother liked it.


  3. I don’t think we had any of those things here. But I did have a fondness for ‘Nesquik’, a powder you could stir into milk. It came in Strawberry, Chocolate, and Banana flavours, and was the closet thing I had to a milk shake, until I was a teenager.
    I just looked it up, and they still sell it. 🙂
    Best wishes, Pete.


  4. I remember the flavored straws. When I was young, mother took us on a train trip from Michigan, to Alabama. We had fizzies to put in the water while on the train. Later I would be introduced to the remark, “That’s about as funny, as a flash flood in a Fizzie factory.


  5. In the 1960s or 70s my mother ceased purchasing “Tang” because me and my sisters liked to eat it dry in little teaspoons straight from the jar and into our mouths, thinking – as kids are wont to do – that no one would notice….


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