Feb 23, 2015

The Coca Cola Kid

I don't drink anything alcoholic,  I hate tea, lemon-lime sodas make me gag, and orange juice is for sick people. My only beverages are water and Diet Coke.

Two or three 12-ounce cans or one 20-ounce bottle per day.

That doesn't strike me as much.  But:

1. Every time I am invited to dinner at someone's house, I have to bring my own.  Nobody else that I know drinks it.

2. Every person I have ever met, without exception, has informed me that I shouldn't drink it because aspertame causes cancer in lab rats. Usually they say this the first time they see me with a can.  I always say "Really?  I had no idea!  This is the first time I've ever been told this -- today!"

By the way, that's an urban legend.  Aspertame does nothing to lab rats, or to humans.  Your stomach breaks it down into aspartic acid, phenylalanine and methanol, which we consume all the time in organic foods such as meat and milk.

Those friends who are a little less intolerant concerning my vice think that Coca-Cola memorabilia would make a good birthday or Christmas present.

The problem is, Coke advertising overwhelmingly features attractive young ladies, trying to draw in straight men with the promise that "If you drink Coke, you'll get laid."

The only time you see guys alone are in humorous ads.  Or creepy ones.  The psychotic Sprite Boy was introduced in 1941 to force people to use the four-syllable "Coca-Cola" instead of their preferred "Coke."

Or in some of the bonding ads of the 1970s, with people of various races holding hands on hilltops and singing "I'd like to buy the world a Coke."  Here they're alternating black and white to demonstrate that Coke is "the real thing."

But their knees are touching, anyway.

This ad from the 1940s shows a father and his wife and son, or maybe his daughter and son (who has a target on his muscle shirt).  As they raise bottles to their frozen plastic faces, we are told that Coke is "a family affair."

Even this series of tv commercials from the 1990s, featuring Lucky Vanous ripping off his shirt to chug Diet Coke, puts him in the sight of the lustful ladies gazing from the office next door.

But during the Super Bowl, Coke broadcast a new commercial showing people of various races and religions engaging in wholesome activities while drinking Coke.  Among them were gay dads teaching their daughter to bowl.

See also: Lucky Vanous, the Diet Coke Guy.

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