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A chocolate nugget with cherry in the middle. If that weren't enough, the chocolate contains both peanuts and coconut. All in all, this is one really friggin' tasty piece of happiness.

Ingredients: Sugar, modified palm and vegetable oils, chocolate, modified milk ingredients, cherry, glucose solids, roasted peanuts, coconut, invert sugar, milk fat, milk ingredients, glucose, soya lecithin, salt, invertase, acetic acid, artificial flavours and colours, citric acid, sodium benzoate, potassium sorbate sulphites, maltol.

Weight: 45 grams

Approved by the Kashruth Council of Toronto to be a kosher foodstuff. (http://www.hersheys.com/products/kosher/index.html)
I see older men in my land who have Oriental wives. I assume, usually, that they met them in Vietnam during that debacle. Most of the wives I see look Vietnamese or Cambodian.

During a particularly strange period of my life, I decided that I, too, wanted an Oriental woman to be my wife. A woman I didn't know. A light-skinned Oriental woman I didn't know. Probably a Japanese woman. Or girl.

It seems that Russian girls are the current rage. I can understand that. Fine hair in just the right places. A mixture of Scandinavia and Bulgaria, with just a touch of the Yellow Peril in that blood. Large hips and sweet smiles. All in all, a very attractive vacation package, and it surprises me none that plenty of wannagrooms are falling for it.

I predict misfortune in their later years, however. One thing you can count on from your young Russian bride is this: Once they get their hands on America, you can bet your overweight balding ass that they'll scheme their pretty way to a better offer than yours. And, should best come to best, and they stay with you for the rest of your sorry life, you will then have another problem. Have you ever seen an old Russian woman? I'm sorry, my Trotskyite friends, but truth must be told here. Your women don't age well.

I suppose this is one of the things that attracted me to the Oriental idea. These women knew what fidelity meant. And they didn't seem to have the tendency to put on a few hundred pounds and a very thick moustache as they grew older. They would understand the sacrifice and the discipline and stay true and slim to and for the one what brung 'em. However, all in all, this was just an idle fantasy.

Until one day when I was walking down Union Avenue in Memphis, TN. There, on the bus stop bench, was a small pamphlet. On the front was a cheap font spelling out Cherry Blossoms. Underneath was a bunch of small type, but a quick flip to page one showed the purpose of this happenstance missive. Lovely young women (with photos) who would like to meet me. Young women (even girls) who would love for me to bring them to my country for the purpose of wedded bliss.

Did the Lord God Almighty leave that pamphlet there for me to find? Was this an Art Bell sign from above and beyond? I secreted the pamphlet in my jacket and took it to my bachelor pad for closer perusal. Upon said perusal, I discovered that many of these women and girls were from disadvantaged families in places like the Philippines and Cambodia. You could tell the ones who were desperate by the photo and the snippet about them. The photo would be suggestive (no nudes; this was a family-friendly pamphlet). They would be bending over to retrieve a scrap of paper; looking back over their shoulder and their backside to post that America-winning smile. Or, they would be sitting demurely on a bench, with their legs spread apart just enough for the reader to know that he might not be the first to find the delta to that particular river.

I poured over this pamphlet for several days. I was in the middle of an affair with an operator, and desperately seeking other options. Finally, I picked out a couple of the lighter skinned Japanese ladies and wrote to them. This was the carrot at the end of the Cherry Blossom stick. You could write to the ladies, but if you wanted them to answer, you had to subscribe to the Cherry Blossoms pamphlet. Which I did. I think it was under $50.

Within a few weeks, I had letters coming back from over there. They were sending me photos of their homes and lovely letters about them and their lives. I enjoyed reading these letters and looking at these pictures, but one thing became obvious: The light-skinned Japanese girls were interested in pen pals and learning about another country. They had been seduced by the Cherry Blossom idea as a "learning tool" about, say, America. Just as I had been seduced by my version of the Cherry Blossom idea of sex and death.

When it became obvious that any future Mrs. Me would have to come from the suggestive photos and the desperate situations in the less-wealthy portions of the East, I gave up on the idea and jumped back into bed with the operator.

God bless the many men who have found happiness with a mail-order bride and the brides who have bettered their circumstances from such a union. I put myself in your shoes and say, "Yeah, almost."

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