Sep
16
2007

Progress being made in effort to remove fun from chewing gum

President Eisenhower: He doesn't disapprove of you chewing gum, but he doesn't like it.
President Eisenhower: He doesn't disapprove of you chewing gum, but he doesn't like it.
The “No Fun Initiative,” begun under the Eisenhower administration, has made tremendous strides in the last several decades. The removal of Lawn Darts from the American market, as well as the introduction of square dancing into elementary school physical fitness programs, are just two of the project’s major milestones. Bubble gum and standard chewing gum, however, have been consistently “sticky” points in the NFI’s agenda. Although certainly not “very fun,” chewing gum has always been classified as “kind of fun,” or at least “something to do.” While the NFI approves of people being occupied, there have traditionally been too many aspects of the gum-chewing lifestyle that are misaligned to the initiative’s aims, namely in respect to flavor, texture, and “bubbles.”

Perhaps heartened by the success of sugar-free chewing gums, the NFI has most recently turned its attention from gum flavor to gum texture. Unsurprisingly, British scientists (already well versed in not having fun) are the first to have made a significant breakthrough in fundamentally altering some of chewing gum’s enjoyable physical properties, and have just recently announced a “nonstick” gum.

The gum of tomorrow - today!: It's trying to stick to the ashtray, but it can't.  (photo by re-ality on flickr.com)
The gum of tomorrow - today!: It's trying to stick to the ashtray, but it can't. (photo by re-ality on flickr.com)
The idea behind the creation was to manufacture a gum that would not adhere to anything outside of the mouth. One assumes that the new gum will still be available in “stick” form, at least until a less interesting shape can be devised and market tested. Revolymer (the company behind new gum) states that the product can easily be removed from shoes, hair, clothing, and pavement, and has given it the very tidy and serviceable name of “Clean Gum.”

"The basis of our technology,” states a Revolymer scientist, “is to add an amphiphilic polymer to a modified chewing gum formulation which alters the interfacial properties of the discarded gum cuds, making them less adhesive to most common surfaces."

There you have it. The future is now slightly more okay.

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