Saturday, May 12, 2012

The Age Old Debate

Vanilla soft serve ice cream in all its yummy goodness is even better when it’s smothered in rainbow jimmies. Yes, jimmies…they are called jimmies. You might stop reading right there and say I am wrong, they are called sprinkles. If you were here with me now, the following discussion might happen. I’m going to call you Rose (because that was the name that Caura just suggested).

“They are not called jimmies, they are called sprinkles,” said Rose.

“Actually, the rod shaped ones are called jimmies, the round ones are called non-pareils, and the ones you shake on Christmas cookies are called sprinkles,” I said.

“Uh…no, they are all just called sprinkles, because you sprinkle them over your ice cream. Calling them jimmies must be a south jersey thing,” said Rose.

“You’re onto something there, when I lived in Virginia and asked for jimmies on my ice cream, they looked at my like I had three heads. They had never even heard them called that before. It was there and only there that I called them sprinkles…very reluctantly and with a pained face and a bad feeling in the pit of my stomach,” I said.

Rose points out the box behind the ice cream counter and says, “look, right there at the box, it says ‘sprinkles’ on them.”

“That’s because too many people have conformed and strayed away from calling them their real name,” I said.

I pull out my (non-existent) smart phone and google “jimmies.”

I share my findings with Rose. There are references to Jim Crow, and that saying Jimmies is racist (this is shown to be false). The Just Born Candy Company claims they named them jimmies after an employee (this is shown to be very unlikely). It’s an actual word in the dictionary describing “tiny balls or rod shaped bits of candy…” The definition of Sprinkles is pretty much the same thing. One source says the name jimmies originated in Boston. It is said that some people also call them “hundreds and thousands” or even “ants.” I find that the term “sprinkles” is a generalization of all the little candy confections that are “sprinkled’ over cake, icing, and ice cream.

“Well, there doesn’t seem to be a clear answer, but I know in my heart that they are called jimmies. Are you still going to call the rod shaped ones, ‘sprinkles’”? I ask.

“Yup,” Rose responds.

“Alright, let’s eat,” I suggest.

Am I really trying to get you to agree with me that they are called “jimmies”? No, of course not, I really could care less what you call them.
The point was that we all have our own opinion. I can state my opinion, and stand up for what I think is right, but not get mad or call the other person a poopy-head because they have a different opinion. If I change your opinion, great, if not, that’s ok, too. Don’t fight…don’t lose a friend over it. You are allowed to have your own opinion, even if it’s not the popular or “PC” opinion. You can still be loving, tolerant (EEK…I said THAT word!) and respectful of another person and NOT compromise your beliefs and opinions.

Please remember this the next time you have a heated debate about whether to immunize, breast vs. bottle, gay marriage, God, politics, student loans, homeschooling vs. public school vs. private school, and on and on and on.

Now, go eat that ice cream.


  1. love public school, and I call them Sprinkles ;-) And we're still friends!

  2. I love public school, too. It's the right choice for my family.