[Redacted from a newsgroup post from July 9]
I found something that brightened my whole day.
When I was first diasgnosed as diabetic, the hardest part was giving up Coca-Cola; I’ve been a huge cola drinker since I was four, and settled on Coke as the One True Soda somewhere around 1981, after boyhood flirtations with RC Cola and even, sometimes, Pepsi. I’d tried diet sodas, and while Fresca was and is tasty stuff (it was better in the original formula, with cyclamates, but the current aspartame-based version’s okay; the intermediate form with saccharine was vile), it just didn’t scratch the cola itch.
Diet Coke is… icky. I can drink it without gagging, but I don’t like it. Diet Pepsi is actually slightly better, but still unpleasant.
But Coke Zero — ah, Coke Zero partakes of the true cola nature, i.e., it’s got plenty of phosphoric acid, it’s not too sweet, it has an edge. Drinking Coke Zero made it possible to survive giving up The Real Thing, and I felt blessed that the Coca-Cola Company had produced this acceptable ersatz in time for me to have it available when I needed it.
So I transitioned from drinking three or four half-liters of Coke a day to drinking four or five 12-oz. bottles of Coke Zero.
Why 12-oz. bottles? Because I don’t like cans — you can’t reseal them, they go flat sitting on my desk when I really get in the zone writing, they give everything a faint metallic taste — and our local bottler didn’t produce half-liter bottles of Coke Zero. The 12-oz. bottles are a pain — they’re more expensive, they come in cardboard cartons that clutter up the recycling bin, 12 ounces isn’t quite enough to be satisfying so I wind up opening another bottle and drinking more, which is even more expensive — but they were what I could get.
So today at Giant I was loading boxes of Coke Zero into the cart, when I glanced over and saw…
Half-liter bottles of Coke Zero!
There was no heavenly glow or choirs of angels, but there might as well have been. I put the boxes back and started loading six-packs of half-liters, instead. I bought all they had. I’m not kidding, the entire shelf — almost needed another cart.
It’s utterly trivial, I know. It’s just an attempt by the Coca-Cola Company to pry more money out of consumers’ pockets. (Not, speaking as a stockholder, that that’s a bad thing.) But it certainly made my life a little better.