Of course, no good deed (or piece of humor) goes unpunished. We received a letter from a Gentle Reader that accused us of making fun of a certain jelly bean company whose product, in the opinion of that Gentle Reader, is the best in the world of its type.

On that latter point, we choose not to debate. The real beans, Jelly Belly's, produced by the Herman Goelitz Candy Company, (owner of the "Jelly Belly" trademark) are the best in the world, as far as we're concerned. From the number of empty bags of their product littering the offices here, you'd conclude that we might, in fact, be some of the greatest Jelly Belly fans on the planet.

We weren't making fun of them, though. We have a cordial relationship with that candy company, and we aim to keep it that way.

It just happened that one day over lunch, we thought about what might be the worst possible flavors for candy, and tossed around the idea of what a company selling those beans might have to do to promote itself. Out of that frenzied can-you-top-this bull session came the semi-juvenile, partially-gross-out piece of humor you were just viewing.

We have assurances from the real jelly bean folks that they're okay with this (forget what you might have read on this page previously). They're more than okay with us, especially when it involves the pear and peach flavors. (No, we didn't take any bribes, we just like those flavors a lot. And the licorice.)

So, if you're one of those that thinks we're making fun of that company, and shame on us, then get even with us and show your support for them by purchasing some Jelly Belly beans. If you don't think we're making fun of that company, go buy some beans anyway. We certainly will.

"Meanwhile, back at the ranch..."