by Wyatt Miller
Lately there's been some apocalyptic brouhaha about the supposedly proto-totalitarian implications of New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's proposed ban on large sugary beverages at certain establishments. Apparently, Bloomberg's top-down (and admittedly farcical) insistence on a healthy public slides us all a little further down that slippery slope toward
Hell some Big Government Nanny State — one which also happens to include the twin evils of affordable health care and subsidized birth control. Because New York's Democrat-turned-Republican-turned-Wall Street groupie-"independent" mayor represents the hardline of 'socialist' ideological dogma, right? Right?
It's called "The Bean Tube Experiment", and it's billed as a partnership between LiveWell Colorado and Garbanzo Mediterranean Grill. The obesity-battling nonprofit and the hummus and falafel-peddling regional restaurant chain are erecting said tubes across the state, to "raise awareness about the benefits of healthy living and reward Colorado residents for making an effort to eat and live healthier."
After reviewing the information, however, we've come to have some doubts as to the real purpose of these strange, synthetic structures filled with their stale seeds.
A "Fact Sheet" (read: definitely not a corporate press release) detailing the "Experiment" (read: some cutting-edge, scientifickey, nutritional thing — definitely not a thinly-veiled corporate ad campaign) says the two organizations are "encouraging their fans and supporters to hit the streets in search of the bean tubes." Tubes carry "wellness messages" and QR codes (those scary, ubiquitous iPhone barcode things) that link to the Bean Tube Experiment website, where tube-scanners can find blogs from each organization, and — you guessed it — a mysterious, mouth-watering "Garbanzo offer."
No doubt, hordes of Coloradans (the campaign prefers the archaic but cuter "Coloradoans") hip with Garbanzo are already rushing to "win" this oh-so well-intentioned scavenger hunt.
The bean tubes can be found at various locations (hint: there's one at Penrose Library) around the Springs for the next three weeks, after which the Experiment will be conducted in some other Colorado city. For more information, check out Garbanzo's website, which frantically insists on the "authenticity" of their products, bombards viewers with pastels and plastic cuteness, and includes a nutritional info for their entire menu (it turns out there's a reason they didn't fill the tubes with chicken shwarma.)
Additionally, the legume obelisks' website includes LiveWell Colorado's blog, the most recent entry of which, strangely enough, is about New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's proposed ban on large sugary beverages!
To hell with good intentions, I guess. Or something.
Garbanzo beans, also known as chickpeas, ceci beans, chana, sanagalu Indian peas, and Bengal grams, are a high-protein legume. They are thought to have been cultivated by humans since prehistory; India and Pakistan currently lead in global garbanzo production.