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Weirdo Wednesday – June 22, 2011

June 22, 2011

We live in a country where weird is embraced as a lifestyle choice. Between weird places and the weirdos that live there, I love America. It’s like a weirda-a-pooloza on steroids. And just when you thought you’ve seen the weirdest of the weird. It just keeps getting weirder.

Nowhere in America does the level of weirdness approach the heights you will find in California. You might as well call it Weirdofornia. It fits.

In the small town of Burlingame you will find the Museum of Pez. Yes… that Pez. The little candy dispenser that could. Home to the world’s most extensive Pez collection on the planet. Home to the world’s largest Pez dispenser. Home to candy weirdness.

Austrian candy executive Eduard Haas invented Pez candy in 1927. The original little candy bricks were peppermint. In fact, the word Pez is an abbreviation of the German word for peppermint.(PfeffErminZ) Pez candy was originally sold in small tins. The first Pez dispenser appeared around 1950.

Pez was originally marketed as an adult mint for people trying to quit smoking. The first Pez dispensers, known to collectors as “regulars”, did not have character heads. Around 1952, cartoon heads and fruity flavored candy were introduced. Since then, over 500 different heads have been made.

Work your way down Highway 111 to a little place called Niland, not quite 100 miles from Mexicali on the southern end of the Salton Sea. You will find Leonard Knight’s Salvation Mountain. It’s not the middle of nowhere but you can see it from there.

It seems a little sacrilegious to dub any monument to the God almighty as weird but considering the location, the hodgepodge arrangement of sand, paint and adobe, and the inclusion of Knight’s “Salvation Truck,” I have to say with complete assurance this qualifies.

From the folks over at WeirdUS.com

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