The Trying Times of Breakfast Cereals

November 7, 2007
By Matt Ebert, Fredericksburg, VA

One might wonder just how exactly the shiny and colorful breakfast cereals we eat came to be. Where did cereal come from? What kinds of pressures do the mascots that so avidly represent their cereals face? Just who exactly is General Mills and which war did he fight in? These are questions that everyone who has ever read the back of a cereal box needs answered.
The solutions are nearer than we think. Believe it or not, it has been scientifically proven that cereal is made by little elves that work inside trees and employ mascots to endorse and sell their cereal to small children, much the same process as cookies. However the elves don’t use magic and they don’t craft cookies. They make cereal. Not cookies. And no, there is no point in thinking otherwise; small woodland cereal-making elves are real. The cereal elves have been working on cereal much longer than any other elves have been working on cookies. Since cereal is part of breakfast (the first meal of the day) it must be thought of and put into production first.
The elves introduced cereal in 1899 with the help of Dr. J. H. Kellog long before the scheme of having mascots and characters endorse cereal was trendy. The people of a small town in Michigan called Battle Creek were in dire need of nutritious breakfast foods and the elves told Dr. Kellog that grains were the way to go. Kellog’s son, W. K. Kellog later had the idea of rolling up and toasting the grains (again, the elves) to make them more appetizing and attractive to people.
One hundred and eight years later we have a variety of cereals that are packaged, colorful, somewhat-tasty, and endorsed by mascots, celebrities, and child actors that disappear for a time, then snap, do crack, and pop up at drug rehab ten years later.
There are a few classic cereals that remain evenhanded and superior in these trying times that pit Corporate against Not-so-Corporate, cereal against strudel, the Pillsbury Dough Boy against the Waffle Crisp ladies.
Cereals such as Cap’n Crunch and Cheerios are the leaders of a revolution we call breakfast. A militia of whole-grain tasty-os combats the forces of hunger with such pride and motivation that it makes the American Revolution look as if it were fought by a bunch of pansies. It was back in the good old days of nutritional freedom when a cereal mascot could freely eat his or her Lucky Charms or search for his or her lost Froot Loops without being bothered by the burdens of society that men and women are compelled to produce: children.
Nowadays, a leprechaun can’t even lead a simple life without being hunted down by the deviants for his oats that just so happen to be magically delicious.
It’s not anything he can help; he just has astonishingly scrumptious mealtime foods.
The new age has turned the world into a place where a rabbit can’t even try his own cereal because of oppression and discrimination. You know it’s getting bad when a six-foot tall bunny can’t even take back his OWN cereal from some kids because if he so much as touches a child he’ll be hit with pedophile charges like a Catholic priest (hence the Rabbit checking into rehab to sober up from his addiction to sugar).
In fact, a couple of years ago, Sonny the Coo-Koo Bird, Cocoa Puff’s mascot and endorser, was charged with manslaughter in the second degree because he couldn’t take the pressures of being coo-koo all the time. Two kids at a skate park would not leave Sonny alone, calling him names and saying he was ‘part of a balanced group of weird-os.’ Sonny lost control and snapped.
In an interview with Barbra Walters, Sonny stated “there isn’t a day that goes by I wish that it hadn’t happened…I just went coo-koo [for cocoa puffs].” The charges were dropped after a settlement was reached between Sonny and the families of the victims for a year supply of Cocoa Puffs each.
The incident involving Sonny brought a lot of attention to the public in the area of cereal mascots. Up until this episode, not very many people were aware of the stress being a mascot can bring. People were afraid that the strain of working in the cereal advertising business would turn mascots into ‘cereal killers’ who would rampage throughout the suburbs and murder innocent civilians.
It’s these kinds of extreme cases that make us wonder just how reliable our government is. One thing is for sure; if something ever goes wrong it can be linked directly to the government. Droughts, spoiled milk, clogged toilets, anything. It’s obviously the government’s fault. Only the Committee of Endangered Real Entities for Organized Leaders (of Traditional Mascotism), or C.E.R.E.O.L. (T.M.), has been working towards issues pertaining to the affairs of mascot cruelty and maltreatment. In order to prevent more disastrous cases of extreme action (ex. the cases of Frankenberry and/or Count Chocula, both of which committed suicide due to an unbearable amount of unruly puns on their names—an amazing yet tragic feat seeing as how they both were never technically alive) it is imperative that the government pass certain regulations and take an active role to stop the cruelty that has befallen cereal mascots.
C.E.R.E.O.L. (T.M.) has been working side by side with the U.S. government to initiate mascot suffrage in the U.S. and ensure that the pseudo-celebrities of Saturday morning cereal commercials will never be discriminated against again. This type of rights movement will most likely allow mascots privacy, protection, and possibly the right to vote.
If the Senate passes this kind of edict it may not be too long before the mascots will be taking active roles in environmental outreach, adopting foreign children, or even running for political office. It has been rumored already that Cap’n Crunch is lobbying for the Republican Party; the Cap’n may run in the 2012 election and call up Tony the Tiger as his Vice President, assuming rights are granted to all cereal mascots.

The verdict of this movement will be decided in time as the mascots continue to make headway in history. Assaults on all of mascot-kind have been contained and neutralized in the past and we can only assume that it will not be long before mascots will become equal members of society. Gone are the days when cereal was just part of a balanced breakfast; now, C.E.R.E.O.L. (T.M.) is fighting for cereal and all it’s patrons to be part of a balanced and equal civilization.

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