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Bubblegum

From Academic Kids

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Dubble Bubble bubble blowing contest, at a Walmart store.

Bubblegum is a type of chewing gum that is especially designed for blowing bubbles. It is usually pink in color and has a particular flavor. Bubble gum tends to be less viscous than standard chewing gum in order to facilitate bubble blowing. Hubba Bubba brand chewing gum that is especially non-sticky, like Bubble Tape, Big League Chew, and Bubblicious.

In the United States, bubble gum is often dispensed by gumball machines. Gumballs usually cost 25 cents each.

One method of blowing bubbles is to flatten the gum against the roof of your mouth then press it up against the back of your teeth. Next, you push part of it out of your mouth with your tongue then blow into the stretched gum.

To blow bigger bubbles, chew your wad of gum for at least five or ten minutes before starting to blow in order to remove as much sugar as possible from the gum. Stretching the gum more thinly with your tongue can help too, as can chewing more gum and so increasing the amount that is available to be blown into the bubble.

Blowing a bubble for too long, so that the surface of the gum is stretched too far, may result in the bubble tearing. Such a tear may be gradual or abrupt; gradual tearing will often merely lead to further air blown into the bubble immediately escaping, but abrupt tearing may cause the bubble to burst altogether. Surface tension within burst bubbles often causes them to fly back towards the face of the blower, covering the blower with a thin layer of gum.

Burst bubbles tend to descend in flight, but it is not unknown for burst bubbles to fly up as well as down, covering your nose, your eyelids, your eyebrows or even scalp hair with gum. This layer of gum can normally be peeled off by hand, but occasionally needs to be washed off. Bubble gum will tend to stick to itself in preference to skin, so temporarily pressing a wad of gum onto your skin will usually help to remove sticky residue.

To remove gum from clothes or other fabric items, harden the gum by applying an ice cube to it. It should be possible to scrape away the hardened gum from the fabric with a dull blade. To remove gum from hair, apply an oily substance such as vegetable oil or peanut butter.

History

The first bubble gum formulation, Blibber-Blubber, was developed in 1906 by Frank Fleer. However, the gum was never marketed. In 1928, Walter Diemer, an employee of the Frank H. Fleer Company, improved the Blibber-Blubber formulation, resulting in the first commercially successful bubble gum, Dubble Bubble [sic]. Diemer colored his creation pink because it was the only food coloring he had at the time. Dubble Bubble's pink color set a tradition for nearly all bubble gums to follow.

During World War II, another gum manufacturer, The Topps Company, marketed a brand of bubblegum under the name Bazooka. Beginning in 1953, Topps added a small comic strip packaged with the gum featuring the character Bazooka Joe.

In 2000, Dubble Bubble instituted a national bubble blowing contest in the United States for children aged 12 and below held at branches of Wal-Mart. This has been repeated every year since then. In 2004, the contest spread to the United Kingdom.

In 2004, Skittles bubblegum was introduced. Prior to 2004, Skittles had only been a candy like M&Ms.

Bubblegum pop

This sweet and entertaining substance gave its name to bubblegum pop in the 1960s, a form of rock and roll marked by pep and charm. Bubblegum blended soul music, psychedelic music, and garage rock into one kid-friendly sound that could appeal to a pre-teen market. In fact, bands such as the 1910 Fruitgum Company literally took on the names of archaic or invented bubblegum manufacturers. At the height of its popularity, it eclipsed most other forms of music in sales (the Archies' hit "Sugar Sugar" being the number-one Top 40 pop song of 1969) but later this format fell out of favor in North America. In Europe it lasted longer, dominating the Eurovision Song Contest for years. ABBA began as a bubblegum act, and its influence was also very apparent on certain glam rock artists such as Gary Glitter, Suzi Quatro, and even The Sweet. In modern times, calling a musician or band bubblegum is an insult, implying the band is shallow, pre-fabricated, or appeals only to children.

In 2001, Feral House Press published a critical history of bubblegum music, "Bubblegum Music is the Naked Truth: The Dark History of Prepubescent Pop From the Banana Splits to Britney Spears." (http://www.bubblegum-music.com)

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