I worked at Ben & Jerry’s last summer. It’s actually a pretty good job, all things considered. You don’t have to put up with a whole lot of unruly or rude customers, because they are either eating or about to eat ice cream. It’s actually physically impossible to be rude while eating ice cream, because ice cream releases endorphins in the brain or something. Has anybody ever committed murder immediately after eating a bowl of delicious ice cream? I seriously doubt it. Maybe if al-Qaeda had a Ben & Jerry’s store in their neighborhood, they wouldn’t hate our freedom so much.
Ben & Jerry’s customers are also rarely impatient. It takes me forever to make a milkshake, but never has a customer done so much as sigh and look at his watch. I think that’s because there’s no such thing as an emergency ice cream run. If you’re at an ice cream store, the odds are you’ve carved out a nice chunk of time in your schedule. Nobody’s going to come in and say “I need three scoops in a chocolate-dipped waffle cone, but make it snappy — my wife just went into labor!”
Anywho, something that makes Ben & Jerry’s unique is the nomenclature of their many flavors. While some ice creameries stick to boring flavors like vanilla and chocolate, Ben & Jerry’s features such barely family-friendly fare as “Half Baked” and “Karamel Sutra.”They also enjoy naming flavors for famous celebrities, bands, and musicians. You’ve got Stephen Colbert’s “Americone Dream,” Willie Nelson’s “Country Peach Cobbler,” Elton John’s “Goodbye Yellow Brickle Road” and, of course, “Cherry Garcia.” One time a guy walked into the store wearing a Grateful Dead t-shirt… and ordered Strawberry. Talk about a missed opportunity.
Perhaps the most popular flavor (in my experience) is “Phish Food,” named for the no-good hippie stoner band Phish. It exemplifies the perfectly symbiotic relationship that exists between the marijuana, music and ice cream industries. The more pot you smoke, the more you’ll enjoy shitty jam bands and the more you’ll crave anything that contains marshmallow, caramel and fudge.
Phish should consider themselves very lucky. Not every band has such a golden opportunity for brand synergy. Here are some bands who are highly unlikely to ever have a flavor named after them at Ben & Jerry’s:
- Pearl Jam
- Nine Inch Nails
- Pissed Jeans
- Red Hot Chili Peppers
- Blue Oyster Cult
- Iron & Wine
- The Moldy Peaches
and, of course…
Have any other bands you probably won’t see in the Ben & Jerry’s display case? Feel free to name them in the comments. This is your time to shine. We love you.