Bursting her bubble

A Canadian girl finds tattoos depicting bondage with her gum, causing the gum to be pulled from shelves.

By Jack Boulware
Published August 2, 2000 7:30PM (EDT)

Canada was thrown into an uproar recently, when a popular brand of children's bubble gum was found to include pornographic tattoos.

The snafu was first discovered by a young girl in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, who opened up a package of Wolfman gum and realized her complimentary tattoos were depictions of naked women in bondage. At that moment, the little girl standing in her local Saskatoon candy shop, staring at images of nude females tied up like hogs, may have discovered that the world was a bit larger than she ever imagined.

The little girl took the gum home to her mother, and authorities were alerted.

Shirley-Ann Redl, owner of the shop that sold the gum, was shocked at the incident, and told a reporter: "I sold probably 100 to 105 packets of these to the children." She added that the little girl was about 6 years old.

Under Canadian law, the tattoos are technically classified as pornography. "The others probably don't fit the criteria," commented a local police spokesman. "But because of the bondage, showing women in bondage, it's a depiction of violence against women."

Authorities investigated the porn bubble gum, and discovered that the Wolfman brand of gum is manufactured by a company in Turkey, and is distributed throughout Canada via a Winnipeg, Manitoba, company. Police assured the public that nobody will be charged because of the tattoos, but Canadian customs has been alerted. Any bubble gum packages containing S/M tattoos will be seized. Local shops have been advised to remove the Wolfman gum from their shelves. Hopefully, order will soon be restored.

Jack Boulware

Jack Boulware is a writer in San Francisco and author of "San Francisco Bizarro" and "Sex American Style."

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