“His name would be Xorknob!”
“Maybe their flying saucers would have amazing ray guns that would transform all the vegetables on my plate into gingerbread!”
“Maybe the gingerbread aliens actually brought the gingerbread men here in the first place. Or maybe the gingerbread aliens are worried that the gingerbread men taste better than they do!”
The boys kept the theme going for a few days, every time the package of gingerbread men came out to the dinner table. On the fifth night, the boys’ father, Chris, looked at their mother, Angela, with that, “maybe they’ve got something here” cocked eyebrow. She raised both of hers in agreement.
The next day, they all headed off to the local stores to get an idea of “the gingerbread market,” and were rather pleased to see that none of the stores carried variations on the iconic gingerbread man, let alone anything approaching a gingerbread alien. They bought as many gingerbread products as they could find, and went into Xorknob the Xarblonian Stealth Mode.
Over the next weeks and months, the Mitchells conducted research about gingerbread products and began sketching alien designs. The two boys built Lego space stations for Xorknob to visit. Chris put the “Big Machine” to happy work drilling a gingerbread alien cookie-making form out of metal and Angela worked on a presentation to help introduce the idea to a local baker. All along the way, the boys kept asking, “Can we tell anyone about Xorknob yet?” And always came the disappointing answer, “Not yet, son, but soon.”
In summer 2010, the Mitchells approached Melissa Peters, longtime neighborhood friend, and owner of Mim’s Bakery with the Xorknob project. Chris and Angela suggested that it might be a fun project to do together, with the idea of running a test batch during Holiday Season 2010. Melissa loved Xorknob and immediately began brainstorming about all the practical steps necessary to make him come to life. Within weeks, Mim’s Bakery and the Mitchell’s company, ChaseWest Ventures, had a plan in place and began experimenting with gingerbread recipes and cookie production molds. In the next months, they overcame stickiness issues and cooking time challenges; they conducted taste tests and frosting comparisons, and eventually came up with the perfect combination.
Xorknob was ready to zoom down to earth in his flying saucer. He and his minions are the quintessential little green men, perfectly tuned to any festivity but with a new, playful twist on the typical cookie. The Mitchell boys’ original idea of a gingerbread alien will certainly enchant other children, and anyone young at heart will get a chuckle. Whether you buy a Xorknob flying saucer for yourselves or to give as a fun present, you will be delighted.
During Holiday Season 2010, Xorknob was available in Chico, California at S&S Produce, Bird In Hand, The Galley, Café Paulo, Mondo’s Café, The Naked Lounge Coffeehouse, In Motion Fitness Cabana Café, and, of course, Mim’s Bakery. Four radio stations in Chico talked about Xorknob and Chico’s main newspaper, the Enterprise Record, ran a front page story on the Mitchells, Mim’s Bakery, and Xorknob on December 24, 2010.
Xorknob made his second appearance around February 14, 2011, when he found romance among the stars with his own true love, Lady Xork. Their Flying Saucer of Love zoomed off to some very interesting places. Stay tuned to learn exactly where they landed on Valentine’s Day.
And in the future, Xorknob hopes to be available during Valentine’s Day, Easter, Fourth of July, Halloween and the Holiday seasons at your local Trader Joe’s. Help us tell Trader Joe’s all about Xorknob! Walk into your local Trader Joe’s today and ask for him by name. Then tell his story and ask that your Trader Joe’s start to carry him soon! Thank you!