Sweets for the suite

(Richard Bready’s last office hours at Microsoft will be on February 27. This column was written so that his colleagues know where to look for candy when he’s gone. )  

Here at Office Online, we do a lot of writing. Writing is brain work. A busy brain burns through 1.5 calories a minute. (Compare that to walking: about 4 calories per minute.) Add caffeine, and the rate rises. Apply a publishing deadline to see some real sweat.

Brain fuel is blood sugar. A healthy diet provides a steady level of blood sugar, but a brain running hard wants regular supplements, the way a marathon runner wants those little cups of water. So we eat a lot of candy. It’s effective, it’s convenient, it’s a reward.

Our mission, of course, and the goal of our working life, is to improve the quality of your life. We show you how you can get more done faster. We bring you tips and tricks, the secret handshakes of software. Documents, spreadsheets, presentations—we set up templates so you don’t have to start from scratch.

In keeping with that mission, here is a list of some quality candy brands that we eat often. Obviously we don’t recommend these over any other candy. No under-the-(candy) counter gifts have been made to get any names mentioned here. And if your brain doesn’t buzz like a hummingbird, you should probably stick with whole grains and aerobics.

What we eat

  1. Boston Fruit Slices http://www.bostonfruitslice.com/home.html
    Strongly flavored, chewy, cholesterol-free, and in bright colors—true eye candy
  2. Goetze’s Caramel Creams http://www.goetzecandy.com/
    I grew up with these. Forty years later, the Web led me back to them. A high-grade treat for “The Average Kid” in everyone.
  3. Murdick’s Fudge http://murdicks.com/
    Real fudge. Butter-based, marble-cooled, hand-groomed, thick-sliced.
    See it done: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PyElGTFqM4E Or visit the site to hear the Murdick fudge song.
  4. Alice’s Stick Cookies http://www.alicesstickcookies.com,
    Ok; I know. But if a cookie were candy . . . These are like fudge that has fallen in love with flour. Or maybe biscotti after achieving enlightenment. My father eats these for breakfast; he’ll be 90 this year. Draw your own conclusions.
  5. Theo chocolate http://www.theochocolate.com
    The “only Organic, Fair Trade, Bean-to-Bar factory in the United States”—chocolate that you can feel virtuous about. And right here in our own Puget Sound backyard.

What are your favorites?

Office Hours is a blog now. That means you can point out the many, many fine candies and other sweet treats not mentioned here. You can exchange your childhood candy memories (if you’re reading this, you may be interested in Steve Almond’s book, Candyfreak , and you may want to mention other books too). So start writing, get that brain in overdrive, enjoy some candy.

“...there was a moment just before you began to eat it which was better than when you were, but he didn’t know what it was called.” (A.A. Milne)