The Popsicle Is the Sticky Scourge of Summer Desserts


Summer is coming, and your alliance to a preferred sweet treat of choice for a sweltering day will be put to the test. I’m partial to ice cream, especially if I run into a Mister Softie truck and have a few dollars in my pocket. Others flock to Italian ice stands, a seasonal staple that disappears as soon as a chill hits the air come late September. Some are still on that frozen yogurt tip. Okay, cool, whatever.

But if your sweet treat of choice is a popsicle, I have one question for you: Why?

No, seriously, why would you choose a popsicle over literally any other food option?

And for the record, I am not talking about popsicles that are Instagram ready like this:

Or Pinterest ready like this:

Or covered in all kinds of cute lil’ fixins like this:

Or the aesthetically-pleasing-but-definitely-made-by-an-over-zealous-mommy-blogger-who-won’t-let-her-kids-eat-high-fructose-corn-syrup-or-preservatives popsicles like this:

I’m talking about regular, schmegular popsicles, like this:

These popsicles remind me of being an eight-year-old at summer camp and wishing I had ice cream instead of a purple flavored piece of ice. And yet, people—adults even!!!—will go to the frozen section of the grocery store, pick one of these 20 packs up, and go to town. I…don’t get it. You can even buy Jolly Racher flavored popsicles now, which honestly makes me want to gag. Is the taste not overwhelming? Do you not get a headache just thinking about eating a giant, frozen Jolly Rancher?

Classic American popsicles are a third tier dessert, competing with snow cones for icy dissatisfaction and its fellow sticked brethren cotton candy and candy apples for cloying sweetness and messiness respectively.

And can we talk about the messiness for a second? When it comes to drippy summer treats, ice cream is preferred, not only because ice cream is better than popsicles, but because the cone helps slow down the drip factor. And hey, if you don’t want a cone, you can just stick that lil’ guy in a cup and keep it movin’. With popsicles, you have no such protection. That little stick with the joke on it isn’t going to save your fingers from becoming a sticky cesspool in the blazing hot sun. And sticky hands are the fucking WORST, maybe worse than popsicles themselves.

If you’re reading this with abject horror (or just mild annoyance) and thinking, “Popsicles are great, WTF is wrong with her?” let me ask you this: Would you really prefer a popsicle to other beloved summer treats? Assuming you can consume dairy, would you have a popsicle over ice cream? Would you opt for a popsicle over an Italian ice? Would you choose a popsicle over frozen yogurt? Even a “healthy” sorbet seems more appealing than popsicles.

For the record, If I had to eat something in the popsicle family, I would prefer a paleta, a Mexican, popsicle-adjacent treat made of fresh fruit and fruit juice. They tend to resemble something akin to a frozen smoothie on a stick rather than a block of ice with red flavoring. But those sickeningly sweet traditional popsicles that are red white and blue and in the shape of a rocket? Miss me with that shit.

If regular schmegular popsicle are your go to summertime staple, please tell me why. I won’t agree with you, but I need to know what’s going on in your twisted mind!!!

[Editor’s note: This is the opinion of the post’s author and not representative of the site as a whole. Thank you to the noble popsicle, a refreshing treat enjoyed by many.]

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