The dragon breath dilemma

I bought a packet of mints the other day. It was an impulsive at-the-counter acquisition, because they came in a really nice tin. Cartoon of a girl transfixed by a tin in sparkling her palms, saying "Ooooh. I love it." I was in a handicraft store run by a not-for-profit community organisation, so naturally, the mints were quite expensive – Cartoon of a woman with dreadlocks saying,"That comes to $27.95…and with the mints, that’s a total of $197.95." But, as the sales girl explained, they were Fair Trade mints. Cartoon of the dreadlocked girl saying, "Each individual mint is made from a single teardrop shed by an indigenous Asabukian infant as they are successfully vaccinated." "The mothers harvest the tears by hand as a means of supplementing the family income." "The mothers harvest the tears by hand as a means of supplementing the family income. Each tin of mints you purchase brings prosperity to a whole Asabukian village." I congratulated myself on my utterly unique and highly ethical purchase, lobbed a handful of the little green teardops into my mouth and headed to my car.

They tasted a bit strange, but according to the tin, this was because they contained green tea, ‘scientifically proven’ to FIGHT DRAGON BREATH! ‘Wowee,’ I thought. ‘Not only do these things save villages in the developing world, they ward off bad breath of mythical proportions!

‘I got myself a flipping bargain!’

I shared some with my son. He liked the subtle interlocution between the mint and green tea flavours – Cartoon of a curly-haired boy throwing a mint in his mouth and saying, "Mmmm. Kinda minty. And kinda not." But he was quick to point out the claims about dragon breath were bollocks. "Dragons don’t have bad breath! It’s an ignorant stereotype perpetuated by the media." Cartoon of mother saying, "What about the bits of rotting virgin flesh that get caught between their back teeth?" "Seriously, Mum?! Dragons breathe fire, right?" "So it stands to reason that any remnant of virgin sacrifice that did get caught between a dragon’s teeth would be instantly barbecued, giving off a tasty, freshly-roasted-pork aroma.""Giving off a tasty, freshly-roasted pork aroma." "Dragons probably have the best breath of any living carnivore." When you think about it, it makes perfect sense. And to begin with, I felt a bit gullible for buying into the whole dragon-breath calumny. But once I had the chance to mull it over, I realised I should be outraged, not ashamed.

My simple good intentions – and those of handicraft-buying mint suckers everywhere – have been taken advantage of! Cartoon of girl with hands on her hips, saying, "I've got a serious mind to petition those Asabukian mint mamas, and tell them exactly what I think of their cynical exploitation of reptilian minorities!"

17 thoughts on “The dragon breath dilemma

    • Great to hear from you! I’ve just been getting back into reading some of your posts I missed, too.
      The mints were actually quite good, by the way, and lasted me weeks and weeks. They were more like $7 than $170, and you can get them at Oxfam xx

      • Although I should point out that the tears might have been a fictitious indulgence, the description of the ‘scientific’ dragon breath label and ensuing conversation are 95 to 98 per cent accurate!

  1. Greatly entertaining Psyren, great to see that you’re back into the fray. Thank you I enjoyed it immensely. Just a thought though…could “dragon breath” be the result of dragon eating? Those Asabukians need to get whatever protein is available into ’em I hear tell!

  2. So charming! What a fantastic story! I loved the drawings too. So funny, and sweet. Your son’s logic is impeccable. 🙂 I kind of want to see a picture of the dragon, but I love the story without it too. 🙂 The drawings of your son remind me of The Little Prince. And your sense of humor, too. Thank you so much for sharing this story with us – you are a treasure.

    • The Little Prince? What a lovely comparison! And thanks for the tip about the dragon – I didn’t even think of drawing one. I’ll save that for another story 🙂

      • Lols. I’ve had a few incredulous people ask if they really cost that much. When she said $6.95 or $7.95 or whatever it was, I reeled a bit, so I think it’s fairly safe to say if they were $170, I would’ve chuckled uncomfortably and put them back down 🙂
        Thanks for the birthday wishes xx

  3. You know you could never have put those mints back no matter how much they cost! After all, it’d be like saying you didn’t care about those hard-working Abasukians and their newly-vaccinated babies. Two tins for me!

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