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PHOTO: Perry Hall's Last Twinkies Are Mine

The great American era of Hostess has finally come to an end.

They're gone, they're all gone. You'll have to get your golden sponge cake and creamy filling fix somewhere else. 

I bought the last Twinkies in Perry Hall and I'm probably not even going to eat them.

The pack is sealed but damaged, the bottom half of my $1 twin-pack slightly crumbled. Is that why it was left behind? Among Orange Cupcakes and Chocolate Zingers, the Hostess display in Safeway looked thoroughly picked over Saturday morning. The gas stations, drug stores and other grocery stores either never carried them or were out—unless I missed some secret stockpile.

Do I save them for a special occasion? Frame them in a photo box? Freeze them? Sell the pack on eBay

For now, I'm just holding it in my hand wondering how I'll explain to my kids 10 years from now why I have a pack of shriveled up Twinkies in a keepsake box. Of course, if the years have no visible impact on the snack cakes, the conversation will be all the more interesting. 

I might mention the business' multiple trips to bankruptcy court, the bakers' strike and the Great Recession that finally brought down the Hostess empire of Wonder Bread and Ding Dongs. Ironically, it was founded in 1930 during the Great Depression. 

I'll tell my kids about my college years, when I purchased much-needed computer repairs from some boys in exchange for a package of Donettes. I'll tell them about the boyfriend who wooed me with a package of Twinkies and a love note at my door after I told him on a Walmart run, "I haven't had one of these in years!" I'll tell them about saving my pennies for a Cherry Fruit Pie at Weis Markets, before I was tall enough to see over the checkout counter. 

Sure, Twinkies are carby and processed and possibly contain beef fat (see the ingredients after "partially hydrogenated vegetable and/or animal shortening"), but they're so darn American. It's anyone's guess if the most iconic products will ever be reproduced. 

Unfortunately, as in life, after the food is gone, the guests leave the mess for the Hostess. 

Share your memories of the all-American snack cakes in the comments.

Tim Gary November 19, 2012 at 12:25 AM
It's not the artificial stuff in the Twinkies getting me. It the scotch, the gin, and Arby's. Ha!
Tim November 19, 2012 at 03:16 PM
Here's a first hand view from an actual worker among the 18,000 who lost their jobs: http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/11/18/1162786/-Inside-the-Hostess-Bankery
BobBaft November 19, 2012 at 03:18 PM
I don't know what everyone's so upset about....Baltimore City is FULL of Twinkies.
BobBaft November 19, 2012 at 03:20 PM
How about Bimbo Ding Dongs! X-Rated Grocery Stores!
BK November 19, 2012 at 03:35 PM
The truth about Hostess and their financial problems / history - https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=491394124234398&set=a.182300141810466.38724.146422995398181&type=1&theater Most surprising? Since 2002, Hostess has gone through SIX CEOs... and none were able to turn the company around. Boo hoo.

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