...or Peep torture. Like many of us, it's all the same to them.

Elevenish Ways To Kill A Peep

So, it’s Easter/Ostara/Spring Equinox/whateveryoucallit, and as usual the stores are full of symbolic representations of our gratitude for new life. Pastels, chocolate eggs, and the persistent Peeps. Yes, the gooey marshmallow “treats” which line up in their neat little rows behind their cellophane windows to peer blankly out into the world through their vacant eyes. They practically beg to be abused, with their conformist attitudes, insubstantial nature, and misprinted features. And, inspired by this effort, my family and I decided to accommodate their blatantly masochistic inclinations. Thus, the afternoon before Easter, we invested $2 in two packs of the “bunny” variety of Peeps, and proceeded to destroy them in the most creative ways we could imagine. What follows is a record of our efforts.

Our experiments began at 4:30 pm on March 22, 2008. All bunnies were given a letter by which they could be distinguished, painted on their little sugary bellies with green food coloring by my obliging son. Only one pack was lettered, as the other was actually destined to be consumed (possibly), in a new and ingenious manner (which will be detailed later). Pack one eventually held twelve yellow bunnies, their bellies proudly displaying letters “A” through “L”. I like to think they volunteered for the experiment, and in those moments before the first bunny met a horrible end they were probably thinking how brave and proud they felt. You could see it on their stupid little faces.

Experimental Peep Subjects Bunny A, it was decided, would be destroyed by suffocation. Hence, he was sealed in a Ziplock bag and left to slowly wither. Now, I know what you are going to say: Peeps don’t breathe!! Yes, that occurred to us as well. But the simple fact is that Peeps are an unusual lifeform (I am not even sure they are carbon-based) and while no respiration is apparent to the naked eye, we felt we could not discount the possibility, and besides we thought it would be a lot of fun to watch them turn from yellow to blue. Therefore, Bunny A was set aside, and we shall return to him throughout this narrative.

image: Peeps and magnifying lensBunny B was destined to meet a much quicker and more dramatic end. It was decided that his doom would be melting by magnifying glass. As you can see from the pic to the right, we originally used a small, child’s magnifying glass in an attempt to burn a hole through Bunny B’s head. This, however, quickly proved unsatisfying (as we are BIG fans of immediate gratification (IG) around here), and we switched to a new and better tool (see next pic).Peep, meet Gigantimagnithing. The massive magnifying lens we wound up employing was satisfying, indeed, and very quickly reduced Bunny B to a thin framework of solid marshmallow surrounding a boiling, blackened core (you knew it was in there), releasing a considerable amount of foul-smelling smoke. It was at this point that it first occurred to me that any neighbors happening to look out their windows might be somewhat alarmed by our activities, but the only interference we encountered was from our cat, who apparently was not put off by the smell of burning bunny flesh. My son and I were so enthused about our progress that we would happily have continued until Bunny B was nothing but a smoldering pool of tar-like goo…but my husband reminded us that it was best to have some bunny remains for the money shot.

image: Peep meltingdestruction can be beautiful
And so, Horatio, I die...

IG factor: 10
Destructive Power: 10
Overall Method Rating: 10

Update: Bunny A shows no signs of distress. /Update

High on the success (or possibly the fumes) of Bunny B’s demise, we set out to do something entirely different with Bunny C. Bunny C, meet Corrosive Substance X (in this case, a serious dose of some of those “Scrubbing Bubbles” we love to let clean our showers). Sadly for Instant Gratification, Scrubbing Bubbles do not eat marshmallow as quickly as they eat mildew. They do, however, eventually take their toll. It took the better part of an hour, but eventually the Bubbles had eaten away Bunny C’s yellow coat (revealing his true Aryan nature), and then proceeded to whittle away at the rest of him. I am pretty sure that had we left him alone with the Scrubbing Bubbles long enough, they could have managed to completely dissolve him overnight, but the fumes were driving me crazy and while I am fine with dissolving bunnies, I draw the line at giving myself a headache over it. Fuck Bunny C. He can finish dissolving in the trash.

image: Chemicals and Peeps
Yellow #5 melts faster than "marshmallow". Scary.

IG factor: 2
Destructive Power: 5
Overall Method Rating: 3

Update: Bunny A shows no signs of distress. /Update

On to Bunny D, whose exit was at least as satisfying as Bunny B. Bunny D was destined to be burned at the stake. It may seem a little overly dramatic, but I am here to tell you that if you have never burned anyone at the stake before, it really can’t be dramatic enough. First, of course, was the matter of finding an appropriately sized stake. Popsicle sticks are ideally sized for burning Peeps, as it turns out. Wedged into a blob of modeling clay for stability (mustn’t have the bunny’s agonized writhing tip over the stake and end the show early), and with Bunny D securely tied around the ears and throat by twine, I felt we were as prepared as we could possibly be. My son had the job of building the pile of twigs and dried leaves which would take Bunny D out, but upon seeing his arrangement it occurred to me that the last thing I wanted to do was spend five minutes burning my fingers with my lighter while waiting for the damned twigs to catch. The whole thing was therefore doused with lighter fluid before ignition. And then the moment of truth, when the first lick of flame touched the pyre…and yes, it was everything we had hoped for. The bunny didn’t so much howl in pain as slump in miserable defeat, it’s foul guts burbling out through it’s charred flesh. The whole thing was over in just a couple of minutes (luckily for Bunny D), but was definitely one of our greatest successes, for both IG factor and aesthetic appeal.

...or it might be genetically inferiorPeep stakeeyeless PeepPeep slumping in defeat
The end.

IG Factor: 10
Destructive Power: 10
Overall Method Rating: 10

Update: Bunny A shows no signs of distress. /Update

Bunny E was subjected to a special tool we had picked up particularly for the purpose of bunny torture experimentation. It was a small hand pump designed to be used for inflating balloons of some sort. My son was quite sure that we could blow up bunnies with it. I figured the bunnies were too porus, but I was willing to give it a shot. Therefore, Bunny E had the pump inserted into his…er…hindquarters, and we proceeded to attempt to inflate him. Much to my surprise, he actually did inflate somewhat. Unfortunately, Peep bunnies turn out to not be as flexible as you would think, and he also popped very quickly, and so rather than a bunny exploded in dramatic fashion, we wound up with a slightly imploded looking bunny full of holes. Lots of holes.

He didn't even notice.Just pathetic.

IG Factor: 5
Destructive Power: 2
Overall Method Rating: 3

Update: Bunny A shows no signs of distress. /Update

Bunny F met his end using more sophisticated technology: the food processor.

Seeing his little yellow face peering out throgh the side of the container, I almost had a stab of pity. Almost. And then I turned it on, and laughed and laughed. End result: many mangled bits, but best of all, you could still sort of see his face on one of them.

video: Peep in a food processor

Things are getting diceyPeep bits.

IG Factor: 10
Destructive Power: 9
Overall Method Rating: 9.5

Update: Bunny A shows no signs of distress. Goddammit. Not even a shade of green. /Update

With Bunny G we decided to fall back on an ages-old crowd pleaser: the power of acids and bases (we homeschool, remember…I don’t know how many damned times I have mixed acids and bases for the amusement of innocent children). I hollowed out Bunny G as best I could and then, using a funnel, filled his little butt with baking soda. Once he was as packed as I could make him, we proceeded to drop him into a jar of vinegar. The results were…not what we had hoped for. He sort of putted around the jar for a while, propelled on a stream of his own chemical reaction, but then he just fizzled and laid there, despite my son’s many insistences that we shake him up again. I suppose the vinegar might eventually have dissolved him, but one can only take looking at a smug Peep for so long.

More uncomfortable than it looks. For us.So lame.

IG Factor: 1 (sooo not worth your effort, and hollowing marshmallows is hard work)
Destructive Power: 1 (as in, really kind of not)
Overall Method Rating: 1 (this is generous, because it makes me feel better to say the damned bunny didn’t win)

Update: Bunny A shows no signs of distress. #$%$%&&!!! /Update

Undaunted, however, we moved on to Bunny H, who we decided would be squished flat. What does it take to squish a Peep flat, you might wonder. Surely you have noticed their resiliency. You can drop them from thirty feet and they just insolently bounce. You can squish them in your hands, and they just rebound. We decided that we would settle for nothing less than flat. We began with a hardbound copy of the adventures of King Arthur (protected from bunny goo by a piece of cardboard). This had very little effect. We then proceeded to add a hardbound copy of Robert Heinlein’s Outward Bound, and then both volumes of the OED. My son noted this was a heavy dose of knowledge (proving that bad, geeky puns are a genetic failing). The eventual weight piled on Bunny H was 25 pounds, and not only was he not flat, but he began to reform himself the moment the weights were removed. Clearly, this would not do. He was inspiring the other bunnies. They were regaining hope, and we could hear the squeaky refrains of “Nobody Knows” drifting from the Peep box. In a moment of desperation, we did the only thing we could think of: we took the little bastard outside and ran him over. There was no popping back from that. The remaining Peeps were sufficiently cowed, and more importantly shut the fuck up.

Sort of ....sad, really

IG Factor: 5 (it takes a long time to squish a Peep)
Destructive Power: 5 (assuming you don’t freak out and use the car)
Overall Method Rating: 6 (I’m upping this a bit, as I feel that we probably could have used bricks or something and made a better go of it…but then again, you have no idea how madness feels until you hear four tiny Peeps singing in solidarity.)

Update: Bunny A shows no signs of distress. Yeah, I know. /Update

With Bunny I, then, we returned to a variant of the most satisfying of our experiments thus far: fire. With a fondue fork and a propane torch, we proceeded to roast the bunny ’till boils popped out all over his body and finally he fell (stretchy tendrils trailing marshmallowy goodness) to the asphault. The neighbors were looking out their window for this one (at least in my imagination), but no one deigned to save the bunny, so they are now as guilty as I. I will remind them of this the nest time they bitch about my unmowed lawn…

The preparatory stage image: toasting Peep
image: melted Peep

IG Factor: 10 (this is as instant as it gets)
Destructive Power: 10 (see above)
Overall Method Rating: 9 (Dropped a point, just ‘cuz it was over too quickly. I mean, IG is one thing, but Bunny I didn’t even stick it out 10 seconds. Where’s the fun in that?)

Update: Bunny A shows no signs of distress. Of course he doesn’t. He’s made of marshmallow. He doesn’t breathe. /Update

dogs, Peeps...a match made in heaven. For the dog.
Carrying on with spreading the culpability as widely as possible, for Bunny J I enlisted the help of two very willing assistants: Lelu and Kadoonis, our dogs. They were quite willing to help. Holding Bunny J between them, I had visions of his little body stretching out in slow motion as each dog took an end and pulled away from the other. Naturally (given the “snarf now, barf later” inclination of dogs), this did not happen. Each dog grabbed a side and bit it off in less than a heartbeat, and Bunny J met the quickest end of any of our subjects (each side being subsequently swallowed in the rest of that heartbeat). I was a little annoyed by the dogs’ lack of style, but they didn’t seem to give a fuck. They rarely do.

IG Factor: 10 (Did I say that propane was as instant as it gets? I lied.)
Destructive Power: 10.5 (there was one crumb remaining. I had to risk my arm to get it.)
Overall Method Rating: 10 (I guess. If you just want to fuck something up, there’s nothing better than dogs. Aesthetics suffer a bit, though.)

Update: Bunny A shows no signs of distress. Is it me? Did I do something wrong? Why isn’t he suffering? /Update

Frying Peeps is hard work
Bunny K was our biggest failure. We wanted to electrocute him. We really did. But my co-conspirator (read: much more sensible husband) was reluctant to carry out my plan, which involved running a copper wire through Bunny K’s head and connecting each end to the car battery charger. He suggested a 9-volt battery. Which I obligingly bought, and which did nothing. Nothing. At all. Diddly-squat. Bunny-fucking-K survived. He would have been toast if I had had my way with him, but whatever. I’m not bitter, or anything.

IG Factor: 0 (seriously, marshmallow does not conduct)
Destructive Power: 0 (not even a little bit of melting)
Overall Method Rating: 0 (Just don’t bother. Unless you have a battery charger, which I swear would have worked.)

Please note: Mr. Interference also took all these pictures.  Which are brilliant, and none of this would have been nearly as impressive without his efforts.  He still bears responsibility for the survival of Bunny K, though.  He also, possibly, bears responsibility for my survival, which is a matter I will leave between him and his conscience.

Update: Bunny A shows no signs of distress. Yeah, because there’s a hole in the goddamned bag. Of course. This is why we need better science funding. Assholes. /Update

Bunny L. Not satisfied with the slow progress of Bunny C, I decided a trip to the grocery store was in order to obtain more toxic substances than I normally ever allow in my house. I bought some off-brand version of Drain-O. I figured, there’s nothing out there I can purchase without winding up on some damned list more evil than Drain-O. Upon arriving home (with a bottle of Scotch for me and some rum for my stalwart spouse, because science is hard work), we filled a small glass jar with the evil substance and lowered Bunny L into it by a rope tied around his ear. The results were disappointing. I mean, this shit is supposed to eat through whatever you can fit down your drain, right? Quickly, one presumes. But no…Bunny L lingered. And lingered. And lingered. Until it got a little ridicuous. Until we had thrown all the other damned bunnies away, and put a lid on his damned jar, because we couldn’t quite accept that he was not yet dead. His howls will haunt my nightmares, and apparently my waking life as well, because despite drain-clog-removal claims apparently you cannot really dissolve marshmallow with drain de-cloggers. Why? I don’t know. Perhaps Peeps are immune to such things. Perhaps, if you want to build a cataclysm-resistant house, you should build it out of Peeps. Perhaps they are protected by God (who is currently not talking to me, so he didn’t respond to my calls). Fuck if I know. All I can tell you is that, if you want to kill a Peep, don’t bother with the corrosive substances. The goddamned Peeps have a saving throw you can’t beat.

image: Peeps vs. chemicalsimage: Peeps vs. Draino

IG Factor: nonexistent
Destructive Power: small enough to make you scared
Overall Method Rating: Just don’t. Seriously. It makes you wish you were made of marshmallow, which is never a good thing.


...I mean, Peep *experiments*

After trying many different methods of disposing of Peeps, I have to conclude that fire is always the best. They are remarkably resistant to chemical dissolution, squishing, and pretty much anything else you can throw at them. Fire, however, is their Achilles’ heel, their Kryptonite, their Necronomicon. In other words, if you want to kill a Peep, fire is the one damned thing they cannot resist. They do exhibit a remarkable degree of solidarity, possibly resulting from the fact that they are joined at the hip from their inception on, but it is important not to let them intimidate you. There is something in their brown little eyes that wants to make you feel guilty, but you must remember that they are marshmallow, and you are human. It is true that one day we may reach a point of enlightenment where we recognize that just because a creature is made of marshmallow, rather than carbon-based flesh, that is no indication of intelligence or feeling. But so far we have not reached that point, so all of you stalwart experimenters should stand firm in the knowledge that you only know what you know, and what you know is that science is fun.
Oh, and always check your damned equipment for holes.

About that other pack…

Oh, right. The other pack. Yep. Tomorrow. I promise. Gotta sober up, first…

9 thoughts on “Elevenish Ways To Kill A Peep

  1. Vega very much hopes to be in on further experimentation. I believe she has a sufficiently macabre mind and scientifically morbid imagination to assist in future endeavors. We agree that it’s fun and necessary to humanity’s understanding of the universe and our place in it.

    poly-saccharides dreams,
    orwell else

  2. You guys are really weird. Brilliant, perhaps, but really, really weird. Which is probably why I like you so much. I think that you should have had a bunny succumb to eath by dog. I mean, if you used a really little dog it may have been gratifying enough to watch it nibble the pieces away. Maybe a squirrel would be better. Yeah. I think death by squirrel might be a fun thing to try next year.

  3. my favorite way to destroy a peep is with my teeth and saliva. i start with the beak (i prefer the chicks), all the way to it’s fake little chicken tail. then i use my tongue and jaw muscles to push the remains down my throat. i let my stomach acids finish him off. sick, huh? but oh, how delicious.

  4. I have had some wonderful ideas offered to me for next year’s Easter massacre. Death by squirrel sounds delightful (just gotta see if I can trick some of the little nutmunchers into going for it). I want to try magnesium wire, and I have some wonderful thoughts about pure sodium and a lawn sprinkler. All suggestions are welcome, and if I can pull it off for you I promise to document the process.

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