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Chileans aren’t too big on eating food on the street. A friend of mine and I once told the story of how we were sitting on a ledge eating our lunch, and her husband couldn’t even really hear the rest of the story, as he was so busy saying, “you were doing WHAT?”

But there are some exceptions. People drink yogurt in the street. Yes, drink. They tear open a corner and drink it out of the container. I know, strange, I prefer a spoon as well. You will also see people eating sopaipillas (fried disks of dough), ice cream, and maybe fruit. And then there are the nuts.

Nuts are these candied peanuts, sold hot on the street by people who are stirring a hot pot of molten sugar and nuts, even as they take your 300 pesos and hand you a bag. The original candied nuts in Chile are actually a re-import of those Nuts4Nuts guys you see in NY. The guy who started the company was Chilean, and he re-imported his brand back to Chile. And so we have Nuts4Nuts carts all over the place.

Which people like to say Noots for Noots (or as I like to think of it, Newts for Newts), or even Newts cuatro Newts.

I am not sure what percentage of the population knows that nuts for nuts means, “crazy for nuts,” but I’m guessing that the imitator, like nuts8nuts (really, I did see this), doesn’t get that other meaning of the number 4. Plus Newts ocho Newts is hard to say.

I should also say that many people know it’s not Newts, but rather nuts. Unfortunately, Spanish does not have that u sound, leading to great confusion between the words cup and cap. So instead we get what sounds like Knots for knots.

Newts, knots, and numbers. Where am I going with this post. Take it out! Take it out!

What do I mean, take it out? I must be honest with you. I have no earthly (get it, peanuts are also called groundnuts) idea:

Take WHAT out?

But this, in addition to the newts and knots, is another brand of maní confitado (candied peanuts). Which, by the way, are never quite as good as you would hope, and I think they’d benefit from a little salt in the recipe, and I don’t taste a hint of honey, it just tastes like caramelized sugar.

I bought this bag of take it out newts/knots one day on the street, and gladly accepted the warmish, oversweet nuts for a little snack. It wasn’t until I had unrolled the sides to open the bag that I could see that there were two messages waiting for me, like the “say no to drugs” on the inside of the red hots box.

But here is where I learned that both God and his earthly son, are both big fans of peanuts.

See for yourself:

Smile, Jesus loves you (and peanuts, apparently).

And in case take it out newts/knots has achuntared (from achuntar, to guesstimate, or hit the nail on the head, conjugated as though it were an English word, a use of Spanglish that is tremendously time-saving at times, and tremendously annoying to most) incorrectly, and you’re not a Jesus-follower. Well, then there’s this:

In God we trust. And they all ate peanuts, Amen.

I don’t really know where to go here. First of all, I don’t understand what I’m supposed to take out. Secondly, Jesus may, in fact love me, in fact, he probably does. However, I am certain this has nothing to do with peanuts. And In God We Trust? Well, um, that’s the official motto of the United States. Which has what, exactly to do with peanuts?

I’ve been thinking about it. And I’ve decided that one day, when I get my entrepreneurial mojo, I am going to go to the United States and sell peanuts called Mani Pedi from a pedicab, and put on the side of the bag “By reason or by force.” (that’s Chile’s national motto) Cierto? (Right?)

(Mani Pedi is a joke. Maní, with an accent, is peanut. Without it, it’s Mani, from manicure (in English). Pedi in this case would mean pedicab, but it goes so well with Mani (which is how people in the US would pronounce it), as pedi for pedicure).

Tell me the truth. Does low blood sugar make me make no sense? Well then, Take it out!!! Thank God for peanuts.