I slipped out of my home and blended into the urban landscape. Nothing to notice here. Just another lost soul looking miserable and drifting along with the tides of refuse dotted across the city. For good measure I even added a limp which wasn’t that much of a stretch since my ankle was still smarting from being smashed on a rock during our last whitewater rafting trip. (A story that has yet to be told.)
No fedora, tattoos, Nike footwear, North Face jacket or 1890’s neckbeards for me. I was projecting identity that screamed, “Leave me the fuck alone.” It helps a lot to be ugly and look as grim as possible.
And so it was I moved silently through the city. Which is rather odd for me since I seldom leave the house. We’re the quintessential Portland family. We have less automobiles than residents in our home. My wife was gone so that meant I had to make other arrangements.
Arriving at the bus stop I leaned against the sign. I must have just missed it since it took many spawns to arrive. I climbed aboard and asked the driver, “Is it okay if I don’t have exact change?” He said it was so I stuck in three one dollar bills for the $2.50 fare. My transfer printed and I couldn’t help but notice no change was offered. So that’s how that shit works. I paused for a reflective moment of gratitude that I hadn’t tried a one hundred dollar bill.
The history of soda portions is super-sized fun. When introduced by McDonalds in 1955, a cup of soda weighed 7 oz. By 2012, however, a 12-ounce soda was considered “kid’s size.” McDonalds, Wendy’s and Burger King all rolled out 42 ounce size single-serving potions called, respectively: Supersize, Great Biggie, and King Size. Since, then, however, those paltry portions have been dwarfed by the Mega Jug at KFC (64 oz), the Beast at ARCO (85 oz), HuMUGous at Kum & Go (100 oz) and the Team Gulp at 7-Eleven (128 oz).
Are you noticing a trend yet? Your keen scientist brains should already be extrapolating future results. My linear regression line indicates that by 2042 a single-serving size will be approximately the capacity of a backyard swimming pool. I call this the LaGrange Point of Soda Evolution. We’ll have achieved something truly special when we’re actually able to swim in our serving sizes.
The point is: We’re a thirsty lot.
With all this in mind, a construction worker name Christopher Lewis of North Charleston recently was having lunch at the Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center in Charleston, S.C. He went to the self-serve soda dispenser and got himself a soda refill. And, by doing so, prompted an improbable chain of events that has irrevocably changed the face of law enforcement as we know it. It makes the Twinkie Defense look like child’s play.
Behold the power of liquid candy.
Continue reading →
SWIM (Someone Who Isn’t Me) is at it again. In this case, SWIM is a person (or persons) alleged to have perpetrated the dastardly deed of opening a beverage container and heretofore not consuming the entirety of the liquid contents contained therein.
Furthermore, it is alleged that these deeds were committed in the unfriendly confines of the Abyss Castle and at great expense to your Guru.
It goes a little something like this:
- SWIM proclaims, “I’m so thirsty!”
- SWIM takes one of your precious cans of 12-ounce beverage. Likely a soda but it may also be a beer.
- SWIM heartily quaffs some of the precious nectar of the gods.
- SWIM sets the can down and aimlessly wanders away leaving a percentage of contents adrift in the oceans of time.
As you might be able to tell by the level of drama and hyperbole, this all pains me so deeply.
Perhaps, you think, why not just pick up the can (yuck!) and take it to SWIM and request the task to be completed? I’ve tried this, and I’m usually subjected to some rendition of “the contents at the bottom don’t taste as good as those on top.”
Oh, I’m sorry! I didn’t realize this was the first layered can of beverage in the universe! My bad.
Maybe they think they’re doing me a favor. Those partially filled cans are quite decorative strewn about the house.
Rather than debate such twisted logic, I grabbed my trusty calculator and decided to wow SWIM with some facts.
Assumption: A six-pack of [insert deadly sugary soda of your choice here] costs about $3.00. Even without my calculator I reckon that’s about 50 cents a can.
Q. If someone drinks one ounce of a 12-ounce can, how much did that cost?
A. Assuming $3.00 for a six pack, it works out to cost four cents per ounce. But, if only one ounce was consumed and the can costs 50 cents, then that’s the same as paying 50 cents per ounce. And since the can has 12 ounces, that simple act of unthirstiness creates a $6.00 can of soda.
That’s $6 per can!
I’m sorry, SWIM, but I’d never spend that much on a can of soda for a non-drinker like you.
“This is only a suggestion, mind you, but we recommend it puts the product in its mouth. Masticate and swallow as necessary. Repeat these steps until product is all gone gone.”
I hope this wisdom will be preserved so thousands of years from now when future archeologists are studying us they’ll be amazed at what we came up with.
Don’t try eating that meat with a spoon. No, no, no. That won’t do at all.
In the Taker household, late at night, basking in the warm glow of the television set, cries of “Treat, treat!” can often be heard.
Household policy dictates that the person who didn’t make dinner (that would usually be me) is in charge of rounding up and serving the evening dessert. Additionally, the person who is receiving the treat gets to make the choice between the two servings. This ensures fair distribution of product. It is strictly prohibited to give yourself a giant bowl of ice cream and pawn off a tiny bowl on your mate. Bad form.
Sometimes, though, when one is feeling particularly cruel and devious, the notion of “servings per container” may come into play. That’s when things really get dicey.
Abyss Island: S1E11 – They’re Gonna Put Me In The Movies / A Night To Dismember
Last night was a heady time on Abyss Island. Lots of comings and goings and what nots and so forths. It was almost too much for a lonely rice-eating bean-eating castaway to deal with. Almost.
It was Day 33 of 39 of my exile from deliciousness. The agenda for the evening included a reward challenge and then watching some weenies on TV try to duplicate my greatness. Ha!
Dinner consisted of, you guess it, a serving a plain white rice. I was out of beans. (They got replenished this morning and the crock pot is crocking them.)
Tree mail hinted at the promise of a reward:
Keep your eye on the ball
Try not to fall
Keep your balance true
And you’ll be A-mazed when you’re thru
Hmm. Sounds like one of those marble labyrinth thingies. Finally! A nice relaxing challenge.
Never underestimate the viciousness of the host.
Continue reading →
I just heard yesterday that “sugary drinks” are now the #1 source of calories in the American diet.
Yeah, baby! We’re #1! We’re #1! We’re #1!
Something I can graph? Excuse me while I sprint to the spreadsheets. I get to graph something!
Lately I’ve been a wagon-follow-offerer. Vegetarian? Check! Granulated sugar? Check! Coke and/or Pepsi? Check! Alcohol? Now wait just a damn minute. I never went on that wagon. Ah. I see what you did there. Well played.
For some damn strange reason I seem to get off on attempting to test my willpower. This is invariably followed by a period of extreme humiliation. Try it! It’s good fun.
I blame my mother for my lifelong love affair with sugar. Some of my earliest memories of life involve the morning bowl of breakfast cereal. Like Cheerios. And it just wasn’t a bowl of soggies unless there was a gooey thick mess of partially disolved granulated sugar remaining in the bottom of the bowl.
To this day I wonder why she deliberately went out of her way to teach me that. I mean, I was only a child. I wouldn’t have known the difference if I was served Cheerios in the raw, right? Continue reading →
In the mornings, after I also gave up coffee, hot tea moved to the top of the list.
Each of those, iced tea and hot tea, both had something else in common, though. And that was my old nemesis granulated sugar.
When sugar got kicked to the curb, that was a major game changer.
Sure, it’s easy to give up soda when you’re poppin’ two tablespoons of sugar into your iced tea. And a basic cup of hot tea in the mornings made from a generic tea bag isn’t super-critical when you’ve had a lifelong love affair with sugar and rely on it to fight any bitterness in your brewing technique.
Now I almost never drink iced tea, although occasionally with a bit of lemon it can be quite good if I get lucky in a restaurant.
Mornings are rougher. My hot tea without sugar is so bitter that it is often borderline undrinkable. And in the mornings I really crave a hot drink.
That’s when I learned I was doing it all wrong. So says the following video I found on my Roku and the free CHOW channel.