Posted by: Staff | 04.01.2009

Beaver Believes VI: Buzz Haverty


A Chocolate Swirl for the Ages

There’s something special about an ice cream flavor that includes another amazing dessert in its name. Cookie dough, anyone? Oreo? Even coffee ice cream doesn’t really make you think of ice cream; you’re forced, via your own strange patterns of thought, to imagine a nice cup of coffee itself. Then, as if the scoopers behind the counter are controlling your mind, the steaming coffee suddenly swirls into a delicious cone of creamy goodness. Now, I’m probably over-dramatizing the process a bit, but there’s something to be said for a cone of Ben & Jerry’s Brownie Batter ice cream. I believe in Brownie Batter, because it is the perfect flavor for all of ice cream eternity.

The tragedy of my tale is that Brownie Batter has vanished from this earth, at least momentarily. Yet while it was here with us, it taught us so much about the wonders it contains. Not just the good ol’ “Chocolate Fudge Brownie”, Brownie Batter took the classic recipe and tweaked it. It added a “swirl” of liquid, a miniscule change in texture that somehow made it even more irresistible. Let’s add some philosophy into the equation. Changing Chocolate Fudge Brownie into Brownie Batter wasn’t the most extreme movement concocted in history, yet it goes to show that even small adjustments, minor tweaks, can drastically alter how something is perceived. Someone might love a song, but take away just one of the background instruments, or add a new track, and the whole thing is ruined. Brownie Batter taught me the lesson of details.

Now, I mentioned that Brownie Batter is no longer sold. This, in itself, is a lesson in value. During those sacred years of creamy delight, when I could run to the grocery store and grab a pint, I respected, yet did not cherish, my Brownie Batter. Looking back, I realize that every moment you have with someone or something you love is possibly the last. When, miraculously, I see a random pint of Brownie Batter on the shelf nowadays, I buy two: one to gorge on instantaneously, and another to save for weeks, even months. The last spoonful feels like you’re boarding a boat, waving to your friends and family as you leave everything you’ve ever loved behind. The good times in life are like the last spoonful of Brownie Batter; if you don’t cherish them, they lose their meaning.

Ben & Jerry’s has been mostly eliminated from my life. The parlor near my house has closed, leaving me few options to get my ice cream fix. When I visit the ice cream store that took over in its place, a small, locally owned joint ironically dubbed “The Chilly Cow”, I feel a pang of sadness. The cows on the wall are drawn differently (because every ice cream place has cows on the wall), the familiar smell of vanilla meeting chocolate is gone, and instead I am left a shell, with everything gone but the memories. Nothing can replace Ben & Jerry’s in my heart, and nothing will ever replace Brownie Batter. The reality of the ice cream business is that it will always be changing, just like any business, or any part of life. There are times when you want to hold onto things forever; yet nothing lasts forever, and nothing ever will. It is important to find your own Brownie Batter, or whatever small thing in life makes you whole, and hold onto it for as long as you can. This, I believe.


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