Have you ever pulled taffy? A successful “Taffy Pull” might go like this:
Your mother cooks some stuff in a pot on the wood stove in the farmhouse kitchen. The pot has corn syrup and butter and vanilla in it. All the little girlfriends you’ve invited to the farm for your birthday party gather around the kitchen table and rub butter on their hands and pair off two by two. When the taffy is cool enough, but still warm, you and your partner choose a ball of goo. Your partner holds the sticky ball, while you reach for some of it and slowly pull it toward you. It should form a long string. Then your partner does the same. You do this over and over. And over. Don’t break the thread. Don’t cry when the taffy sticks to your blouse. Don’t stop to get a drink of water. Keep pulling until it becomes whitish and smooth and looks like the taffy you watched your mother make.
I had a taffy pull at one of my pre-teenage year birthday parties. It was an adventure, but the taffy never “taffyed.” Maybe our little hands were dirty. Maybe we just weren’t patient enough. Maybe we were laughing too hard. But it was great fun, and the mess of candy tasted good anyway, even though we were totally full of birthday cake.