worldsoldesttwinkie

Feast your eyes — BUT NO OTHER PART OF YOU — on the world’s oldest Twinkie. (Well, as far as we know. It’s entirely possible that there’s an older Twinkie out there that fell down behind a couch or something.)

This one is a school project started by science teacher Roger Bennatti in 1976. It sat on top of the intercom box in a Maine classroom for 28 years, until Bennatti retired — at which point he put the Twinkie in a ceremonial case and passed it along to another teacher at the school. The Twinkie’s new caretaker, Libby Rosemeier, has a long history with the Twinkie; she was a student in the 1976 class that first doomed the Twinkie to eternal deathlessness. Presumably in another 30 years Rosemeier will entrust the Twinkie to one of her students, and the cycle of Twinkie torture will continue.

It would be a mistake to say this Twinkie looks none the worse for wear. It reportedly has the consistency of Styrofoam, not to mention having acquired a fine coating of dust during its decades on top of the intercom. It even grew mold at one point, despite all the preservatives, although that’s long dead now. You might still conceivably eat it after a nuclear war, if Twinkies were truly the only foodstuff to survive, but that’s the only circumstance in which you’d put it in your mouth. (The New York Times spoke to a Hostess brand manager, who strenuously suggested that nobody eat the thing.)

Still, visually, it’s in better shape than most foodstuffs would be after 37 years. Guess those preservatives really do what it says on the tin. Can I get some in a face cream?

See: