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The wine gum experiment (Charlie McDonnell)

If scientific investigation fascinates you, anything can be a subject of study. This British boy makes a research on one of the most popular sweets in Britain... and his findings are a bit distressing. Do we get what we pay for?


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Hello everybody!

My name is Charlie McDonnald and this is a packet of wine gums [omg].

(reading) "Wine gums (or winegums) are chewy, firm sweets similar to gumdrops, except they are not sugar-coated. They are manufactured from animal gelatin, mixed with sweeteners, flavourings and colourings."

Charlie McDonnald, why are you telling me all this information about wine gums?
Recently, a friend of mine called Alex Day, also known as "Nerimon", bought a packet of wine gums. Short after buying his tube of wine gums my friend Alex realised that he had been short-changed.

You would expect the five different flavours to be evenly distributed throughout the pack, but no, ‘cause when my friend opened his packet of wine gums he was distressed to see that he had one green, one red, and the rest of the packet contained yellows and oranges.

So on this day, Charlie McDonnald, myself, has decided to do what I am calling "the wine gum experiment". So what I’m gonna do is I’m gonna open all these packets of wine gums and I’m gonna count the different numbers of different colours in the packets and I’m going to draw a graph of my results. Because I’m a dork (yay!).

So, uhm, what’m I doing? Jesus Christ! I just want, I just bought ten packets of wine gums, I’m not even gonna eat these.

First packet of the day and we haven’t got a single green. How distressing!

Hello everybody and welcome to another episode of "Charlie wastes his time". This is exactly the kind of packet I had recently. Two orange ones and not a single yellow. Aah, it's falling apart. Oh, my God, not a single black. How horrible! Augh! That’s disgusting to look at, that is. My God, look, another one, and no black ones. Augh!

Ok, here are my results, uhm, which you can’t see because the light is too bright. Uhm, but I will now calculate my results and make a graph, because I’m cool.

So instead of making a graph out of a picture I thought I’d make a graph out of the wine gums. Probably won't eat them now but, you know, it’s interesting to see. First we gonna start off with the bad points: blacks. Blacks are commonly known to be the best of all of the wine gums, the best tasting wine gums out there, right? And you got the least blacks. We have exactly the same number of yellows and greens, which I think is very interesting.

Hold on. There we go. That’s better. Obviously this is only from ten packs, so I can’t draw a distinct conclusion, but I’ve decided, uhm, from this point on, whenever I buy a pack of wine gums I will count how many, uhm, different colours there are in each packet and add to my results that I’ve made today, and we should see how fair Maynards actually is. These have been on my floor, and when I was putting them out I noticed there were a number of hairs on my floor, I’m not sure if they were pubic or not, but I probably won’t eat these, which is a shame, ah, but you know, it’s all for the good of science. Right?

Why is this such an issue here in Britain. I mean, I’m sure most of the Americans probably stopped watching this almost near the beginning. But to British people this matters, alright? This is important. There are so little black ones, right? and it’s so disheartening, because they are the nicest ones.

Just took my hoody and my hat off ‘cause I was getting a bit hot.

I think that the only way I’m gonna make this video worthwhile is if I eat all these right now. Do you dare me? What, really? Yeah, it’ll probably make me sick, but if you, you still... ok.

I’ll tell you what, I really really know my mum’s gonna come and watch me doing this because... She knows I’m a fan of wine gums, right? But... she’s just gonna think I’m addicted.

Look how many I’ve still got to eat. Oh my God!
Three in one, ready? Pa-pa!
Thirty-six more to go. And I’m, I am feeling sick, if you, if you’re wondering.
Attack!. Aaaaaya
Oh. One more.

All gone! Augh, my tongue’s like got all brown. Ooh. I wonder how many animal fleas I’ve eaten.

I hope you have enjoyed this episode as much as I’ve enjoyed making it.
Wait. Good-bye.

[Tanks fur subscrobing!]

"Wine gums" are soft and jelly sweets (AmE: candies) which come in different shapes, colours and flavours. They were invented in Libya by an Englishman in 1909 and are now popular all over the world. They don’t contain any wine. The name is supposed to come from the great flavour, which someone referred to as similar to tasting a fine wine. Later, another popular version appeared, covered by sugar, which is called "gumdrops" (or sometimes "jellies").

OMG= Oh My God! (an expression of surprise considered for some people a bit or a lot rude or even blasphemous)

CHEWY= easy to chew. To chew is to bite something in your mouth repeatedly in order to swallow it.

SWEETS (BrE) = Candies (AmE)

GUMDROPS= sugar coated jellies (soft sweets)

SUGAR-COATED= covered with sugar

SWEETENER= an additive to make food sweeter (like sugar but artificially)

FLAVOUR= (AmE: flavor) The flavour of a food or drink is the taste it has when you eat it or drink it, so FLAVOURINGS are natural or artificial ingredients that add a particular flavour to a product.

COLOUR= (AmE: color) pronounced /kʌlə*/. The COLOURING of something is the particular colour that it has.

SHORT AFTER...= a little time after...

SHORT-CHANGED= If you buy something and they give you the change but the change is less than what it should be, you are short-changed. From this idea, we can also say that you are short-changed when you receive less than what is fair, or by treating you badly.

EVENLY= uniformly

THROUGHOUT= all over a place, a thing or a period of time. If it rains throughout the year, it rains all the year. If a company has offices throughout the world, you can find his offices in all the countries.

‘CAUSE= because (very common in conversational English)

DISTRESSED= extremely disappointed, very very sad about it.

ON THIS DAY= notice that with days (and dates) we use the preposition ON

GONNA= going to (the usual way of expressing future in colloquial English)

DORK= eccentric, often referring to a school boy who is socially inept but very intelligent (although its old-fashioned meaning is "stupid"). Nowadays it is sometimes used in a kind of positive way to mean someone who is strange but very intelligent and spends lots of time studying or doing research (that is the use of this word on this video).

JESUS CHRIST!= an expression of surprise or annoyance. It’s definitely a rude expression and, for some people, blasphemous. It’s much more emphatic than "Jesus!" (which is also a bit rude). To avoid saying this, people in America usually say "Gee!" or "Geez!".

WE HAVEN’T GOT A SINGLE GREEN= we don’t have a green, not even one. Notice that in English the colours are adjectives (a green wine gum) but may also be nouns (a green), though as a noun, saying "a green one" would be more usual. Later we’ll see both uses in the same sentence: "two orange ones and not a single yellow".

DISTRESSING= something distressing makes you feel extremely worried, alarmed or unhappy.

DISGUSTING= very unpleasant. In this case, it means "very irritating"

COOL= a colloquial word very popular in AmE (now popular among British young people too) which means "nice, great, neat, fantastic".

MAKE A GRAPH OUT OF THE WINE GUMS= make a graph using the wine gums

START OFF WITH THE BAD POINTS= To start off with something is to make the first step of an activity.

YOU GOT THE LEAST BLACKS= of all the colours, black is the one with less number of wine gums than the others. "Least" is the superlative form of "less".

HOLD ON= wait (common in conversational English)

TO DRAW A CONCLUSION= make a conclusion out of some data


FROM THIS POINT ON= I’ll start now and will continue in the future (ON expresses the idea of continuity)

WHENEVER= every time. It works with the rest of WH-words too: whoever= every person, any person / wherever= everywhere, any place, etc.

FAIR= Just (of justice)

MAYNARDS= it’s the name of the company who produced the wine gums he’s using in the experiment.

ACTUALLY= really

A NUMBER OF HAIRS= a lot of hairs (also: "numbers of hairs" = "lots of hairs")

IT’S A SHAME= it’s a pity. If something is a shame you mean you regret it and you think the situation should be different (so you feel a bit or a lot sad about it)

AN ISSUE= /ɪʃu:/ an important subject of discussion

THIS MATTERS= this is important

DISHEARTENING= that makes you feel disappointed and less hopeful, so you’re sad

HOODY= A hoody is a hooded sweatshirt like the one he was wearing before he removed it (see picture).

WORTHWHILE= enjoyable, beneficial or useful. Good for the money/time you spend for it.

DO YOU DARE ME?= If you dare someone to do something you are telling them that they should prove they can do it as a means of proving they are not a coward. In this context he means "do you dare me to eat them all?"

IT WILL MAKE ME SICK= it will make me feel ill (especially if you mean nauseated, with a stomachache). In AmE "I’m sick" means "I’m ill", in BrE "I’m sick" means "I vomit" (e.g. "last night I was sick three times"), but "a sick person" is ill in Br & AmE.

YOU STILL...OK= He hopes you will tell him that he doesn’t need to eat all the gums to make his video interesting, but "if you still insist", he will have to do it.

I’LL TELL YOU WHAT= we use this phrase to call your attention on something we’re going to say.

FAN= a short form of "fanatic"

36 MORE TO GO= there are 36 more things to do (in this case, wine gums to eat)

WONDER= if you wonder about something you are curious about it and want to know. Pronounced /wʌndə*/.

GONE= finished. Used this way especially by children and especially when talking about food, so "all gone" means "I have eaten everything, nothing left".

MY TONGUE’S LIKE GOT ALL BROWN= my tongue has got completely brown. The preposition LIKE, as used in this sentence, is very common in conversational English and it often means nothing, but sometimes it means "more or less, but not exactly".

ANIMAL FLEAS- A flea is a very small parasite that hide among some animal's fur, specially cats and dogs (see picture).

WAIT= In English we use "wait" or "wait a moment" when we realize that what we have just said was something stupid. On this video, Charlie had a bad time at the end, because he’s feeling sick, so when he says "as much as I’ve enjoyed making it", he realizes he’s said something stupid.

[TANKS FUR SUBSCROBING!]= This title that appears at the end of the video is non-sense English spelling made that way to look like a foreign language (German, I suppose), but easy enough to be understood by English people (= "thanks for subscribing"). On YouTube (where this video was posted), if you like the videos a person makes, you can subscribe to his channel and be notified when he makes a new video, so by saying "thanks for subscribing", he wants to say (politely) "please, subscribe to my channel".


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