By Kathleen Vanesian
By Amy Silverman
By Robrt L. Pela
By Jim Louvau
By Kathleen Vanesian
By Benjamin Leatherman
By New Times
By Becky Bartkowski
Redding:I don't know. I hope not.
NT: You're the chocolate man! Who the hell else am I going to ask these questions?
Redding:I know. I'm upsetting you. I guess you'll just need to do a little more research. Because even though I'm in the [chocolate] industry and I should worry about these things, I don't.
NT: Well, you can at least tell me who that creepy-looking weirdo on the home page of your Web site is.
Redding:That's one of our first employees.
NT: And what is he eating? It looks like a giant sheet of human waste.
Redding:It's not a he. It's a woman. And she's eating a big thing of toffee.
NT: Sorry. I thought it was a little kid. Speaking of your Web site, what -- and I'm sure I'm going to be sorry I asked -- is a Big Daddy's Pretzel Rod?
Redding:It's a pretzel rod that we dip in caramel, then chocolate, then roll it in fresh-roasted pecan pieces. It's just huge.
NT: You also sell life-size basketballs, footballs, and soccer balls made of chocolate. Who is buying these things?
Redding:A lot of corporations buy that stuff. We'll make anything to match whatever promotion you're doing. My dad won't say no to anything. We can pretty much make anything out of chocolate.
Redding:Well, things with angles are hard to do. But we're Granny's; we're not going to make Penis Pops or any of that stuff. We did something called X-Rated Chocolate once, and it was three chocolate X's in a brown paper bag. And we do Twin Kisses, which is two big chocolate kisses that we dress up in a frilly bikini top. We sell a lot of those to women who are getting breast augmentations.
NT: The perfect gift!
Redding:It's our booby prize.
NT: But what if I wanted you to make me a 40-foot chocolate dildo, or a candy bar shaped like a human turd?
Redding:I would do a human turd. That's bad, but it's funny. A 40-foot dildo might be fun to do, too, because it's so outlandish. But I don't think we want to be known for that [kind of work]. And I wouldn't subject my ladies to molding anything like that. Although we do sell chocolate handcuffs.
NT: Chocolate handcuffs?
Redding:Yeah. We sell a lot of them. We sold 16,000 of them to a grocery store chain in Florida. They're tastefully done. They say "Prisoner of Love" on the front. Hilarious. I was going to start a line called Pop-a-Chubby, little chocolate penises, and sell them to sex shops all over the country. But they're already being done [by another company], and they're using crappy chocolate with paraffin. They're just gag gifts; people want them for the gag, not for the quality of the chocolate. And my parents wouldn't have gone for it, anyway.
NT: I'm guessing you've seen the Willy Wonka movie?
Redding:Yeah. It wasn't dark enough.
NT: Is that a chocolate joke?
Redding:No. I mean it was too Hollywood. Too happy. I think this came out in order to sell chocolate. Johnny Depp is definitely impersonating Michael Jackson, though. Chocolate guys aren't normally like that.