Growing up, ‘granola’ was a bad word in my book. It brought back memories of a health food store in Oak Park, IL that I would rather have forgotten. It was a typical mid-1980’s health food store, with that universal musty carob powder and B vitamins smell. My mother would drag me inside to peruse the rows of bulk dry goods, the canisters with wan-looking yogurt-covered pretzels pressed their waxy faces against the insides of their jars in a way that reminded me of abandoned puppies. And there was a frozen yogurt machine in the corner that dispensed pure disappointment in the form of a soul-crushingly tart and icy ‘alternative soft serve’.
To the eyes of an adult, there clearly was some kind of appeal here, but much like the Iran-Contra affair, this was something my six-year-old self was unable to fathom.