So first off, let’s just get it out of the way and say that yes, I LOVE Baked Cheetos, but that’s not exactly what I’m here to talk about. I’m not going to go into detail about why crunchy is better than “puffs” and why baked is better than regular or cheese explosion or whatever other flavor exists out there, even though all of that is true.
The reason I’m here today is to explain how Cheetos, yes, Cheetos, taught me a thing or two about chasing my dreams.
NO DON’T! Don’t click away yet, just give me a second (or 60). This is (maybe) worth it, I (kind of) promise.
Anyways, back to Cheetos.
So about a year and a half ago I was at Costco shopping for snacks to fill up the vending machine at work, when I came across a box of various flavored chips including, you guessed it, Baked Cheetos. At the time I probably hadn’t eaten a Cheeto in a solid 6 years, but alas, I instantly added the box to my cart. Maybe I was hypnotized by the tiger with shades, I don’t know. Regardless, I bought the box, figuring that even if no one at my work liked a single bag of chips that were in the variety pack, at least I could check out this whole Baked Cheeto scene and check one box off the Snack Food Bucket List—which I don’t actually have. (Yet.)
As you may have guessed from reading the first paragraph, I fell in love with these Cheetos. We’re talking head over heels, can’t eat (save for more Baked Cheetos), can’t sleep, reach for the stars, over the fence, World Series kind of stuff. (It Takes Two reference anyone?)
Needless to say, after this there was not a Costco trip that went by without purchasing these. Every couple weeks I’d stroll down the first aisle on the left—past all the non-gummy vitamins I figured I should start looking into as a 25-year-old adult—and I’d grab the brightly colored box featuring the one and only fire orange keeper of my heart.
That is, until one trip when the box wasn’t there.
Yes, this is actually a dramatic pause regarding chips.
I stood in the aisle perplexed, distraught, shattered really, that Costco had essentially failed me by selling out of my favorite snack and not restocking the shelves before I arrived.
At the end of the day however, I knew that in the grocery store business these things happen, so I tried not to hold it against old Costco, and I grabbed a different box of chips and headed back to work.
Two weeks later, it was time. It had been a rough 9 days of work without my traffic cone colored companion and I was ready for a big cheesy reunion. Upon arrival however, I was heartbroken to find there were still no Cheetos.
I went back again two weeks later, still no Cheetos.
Turns out, they’d stopped carrying them as, apparently I was only who was buying them because apparently everyone else that shops at Costco is crazy.
But alas, this was the truth I had to live with, and, if I’m being honest, I didn’t handle it well.
I spoke of the loss to everyone I knew, suggesting Costco had given me the biggest heartbreak of my life, and wishing I’d never seen that variety pack in the first place. (As dramatic as this sounds, this is also where the whole “Cheetos helped me pursue my dreams” thing ties in.)
After a few weeks of shameful complaining and undoubtedly annoying mourning however, I decided to make it my mission to find Baked Cheetos again, whether it be for the vending machine at work or just a big ass bag for my house.
Mercifully, my friends and family actually put up with this. Supported it even. Once they learned of my ultimate goal, they did everything in their power to help me achieve it. For as ridiculous as this quest was, they knew it made me happy, and when you surround yourself with people that genuinely love you, they tend to go out of their way, regardless of the consequence, to achieve just that.
These days I’ve distanced myself from the obsession, though that’s not to say I wouldn’t buy them. I still have moments when I feel like nothing can quench my munchies like a (completely underfilled) bag of Baked Cheetos, just like sometimes I feel like nothing could make me happier than writing a blog post or visiting the world’s largest raisin box. And it’s nice to know that no matter how outlandish the goal, if I set my mind to it, I can accomplish it, if not on my own then with the help of those that love me.
So whatever your bag of Baked Cheetos is, go get it.
Also, grab me one. An actual bag of Baked Cheetos that is, I’m starving.