At the 7-Eleven at the corner of Franklin and Lake:

Me: This is a thing?

The lady behind the counter at 7-Eleven: They’re actually pretty good. I mean, I liked them.

Me: OK, I’ll bite.

(What I should have asked: Are they caffeinated?)

Back at Reader world headquarters:

Me: [sniff] [odd smell that’s sort of like cinnamon, except with weird chemical topnotes]

Me (hopefully, straining for enticingly, to nearest coworker): Want to try a cappuccino-flavored Lay?

Nearest coworker: [shudders]

Me: [crunch] [taste of something like potato chip, but sweet, not salty, and, therefore, unnatural]: Ugh.

Nearest coworker: [a look that says, “What did I tell you?”]

E-mail to coworkers:
Subject: cappuccino-flavored Lays, Message: If you’re brave enough.

Within minutes, coworkers gather, as they always do when there is food in the office.

First coworker: I don’t even like the smell. [tentative crunch] . . . uh

Second coworker: [tentative crunch] . . . uh . . . yeah

First coworker: It tastes kind of like chocolate?

Second coworker: It tastes like someone spilled coffee on a potato chip.

Me: Except not soggy.

Third coworker: Good point. [crunch] These suck.

Fourth coworker: I want to try. Bring them over. [crunch] I don’t know, they’re not so bad.

Second coworker [reading package]: They have . . . brown sugar?

First coworker: I can’t get the taste out of my mouth.

Fifth coworker: [crunch] Interesting! If I didn’t know what they were, I couldn’t even begin to tell you what they tasted like.

Sixth coworker: Oh, all right, I’ll try them. [crunch] [retreats to office and glass of water]


Fifth coworker: How about some chocolate-covered scorpions?

Third coworker: Can you get those at 7-Eleven?

Fifth coworker: Maybe in Khorat or Udon Thani!

Fourth coworker: Yo, I still kind of like them.

Seventh coworker: These taste like garbage! But garbage someone poured coffee on. [Goes back for seconds.]

Eighth coworker: These taste and smell like a gas station.

When the dust clears, approximately three-quarters of a bag remains.