The standard, cheap variety are little more than frozen Kool-Aid or other similar artificial fruit drink.

The better variety are made with real fruit juice, and actually provide nutrition at the same time as the sweetness.

Regardless, all of them have a bad habit of allowing you to suck all the juice out of them and leave just a type of ice sitting on the stick.

The invention and history of the Popsicle

The popsicle, a frozen sweet fruit confection on a stick, was invented by Frank Epperson, a native of San Francisco, in the winter of the year 1908. Epperson was eleven years old at the time.

The boy, on discovering that a fruit drink he had accidentally left outdoors overnight had frozen solid with its stirring stick still in it, was delighted at his serendipitous invention. He is said to have immediately named the invention the "Epsicle" (after his family name), and taken further frozen treats, mixed from powder and soda water to school for his friends.

The epsicle was renamed the popsicle, the name under which this inexpensive and wildly popular treat was to become a staple of American childhood.

Frank Epperson didn't stop at just the popsicle, however. He also invented the twin popsicle, with two sticks, made for sharing with a friend or sibling, the fudgcicle, the dreamsicle, and the creamsicle. All of these products were eventually manufactured and distributed all over the United States by Frank Epperson's Popsicle Industries, which he founded in the year 1923.

Frank Epperson was granted the patent for "frozen ice on a stick" in the year 1928, when he was thirty-one years of age.

Popsicle Industries produces over thirty different flavours and varieties of "X-sicles", and claims that its "taste tingling orange" flavour has remained America's favourite since its introduction in 1923. Over thirty million popsicles are sold each year.

RESEARCH SOURCES INCLUDE ENCHANTED LEARNING ONLINE, THE GREAT IDEAS FINDER, AND THE US PATENTS AND TRADEMARKS OFFICE.

opened:
in an excited flurry
of soggy soft wrinkled wrappers
crinkling like paper on a birthday present

taken out:
perfectly-molded tower
of cold crimson in a fuzzy frosty coat
flawless beauty soon to be marred

begun:
with happy sounds
of the satisfied slurping and mollified munching
of brief cool solace in a heat-drenched day

enjoyed:
in cold numbed lips
and marvelous messy damp dripping
down the face, too late to be caught by a napkin

finished:
with a fond memory
and scarlet-stained tongue to protrude proudly
like a trophy, after giving up hope of a few more sweet drops on the stick.

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