Several cultural hot spots to look for in your local supermarket:

Lucky Charms

Mostly sugar, scultpted into multicolor shapes like rainbows (no reference to the Rainbow Curriculum, which argues for a multi-cultural educational approach in NYC schools), shamrocks, and little things that look like potatoes. Shamelessly appropriates the apparently Irish symbols of leprechaun, rainbow and pot of gold. I'm not sure where any of these symbols got their start. It seems the Mayans did better with gold than the Irish ever did, but, can you picture "Mayan Charms"? Small marshmallow hearts in golden flakes of grain. Perhaps more on that later.

Irish Spring

Created as part of a quest for the Irish roots of the orginal Colgate company (named "Irish Spring" because nobody thought "Puerto Rican Spring" would sell). This is marketed as a masculine soap. Perhaps an attempt to reaffirm the manliness of Irish men after 700 years under Anglo Saxon rule? One can only speculate.

Aunt Jemima

An american favorite. Mostly sugar, flavored to resemble maple syrup. Aunt Jemima has become a more conspicuous figure in recent years as black movements have become more vocal about images like this. She has undergone several incarnations over the years, gradually losing weight, toning up, losing the kerchief on the head, doing a little plastic surgery, and finally, a perm. What's next? Michael Jackson?

American Cheese

This true blue favorite has been around since God knows when and contains God knows what. We are reassured by the label that it is in fact "cheese" or at least "cheesey", a "food product" (perhaps "food-like" at best) so we suspect that a cow was involved at some point in its manufacturing. But be warned. Borden, the company that used to make dairy products (from cows) and glue (from cows hides) now makes glue from synthetics. One such synthetic, methyl cellulose, has been used as a thickener in paint but has been rumored to be the thickener in McDonald's "milk" shakes. Is this an unholy marriage of the food and glue industries? Think about it next time you have a grilled cheese sandwich.