Tag Archives: diet coke

Lame Adventure 287: Playing with Food

I wear many hats in my department aside from my actual job as Minister of Tile Labeling.  I am also Minister of Printer Repair, Minister of Replacing the Copier Paper, Minister of Unjamming the Fax Machine, Minister of Kleenex and Tylenol Replacement, Minister of Paper Recycling, Minister of Picking Up Crap on the Rug that No One Else Will Do On Their Own Volition, to name just some of my many illustrious ministries.  In fairness to my sidekick, Greg, he is Minister of Band-aid replacement, Minister of Door Jamb Control, Minister of Freezer Defrosting and Minister of Coffee Brewing.  Recently, my superior, Elsbeth, has added Minister of Morale to my ever-growing list of ministries.  She has requested that as spiritual leader of our department I set forth an example of worker-pride that will have my colleagues, Greg and (not) Under Ling (anymore), merrily follow like lambs to the slaughter.  She did not suggest how I accomplish this feat so I have been left to my own devices.

Recently, Greg mentioned that he heard that if a steak were soaked in Coca-Cola, this elixir’s corrosive properties would cause the meat to dissolve.  This idea captivated (not) Under Ling (anymore).  In reality Coke has been trying for years to dispel this myth along with others and they address rumors about their product on their web site.  In 1950 a Cornell University professor, Clive McCay, testified before the U.S. House of Representatives that the combination of sugar and phosphoric acid in Coke destroys teeth.  He  observed that over the course of 48 hours, Coke can completely dissolve a tooth.  Coke countered that no one has ever held Coke in their mouth for 48 hours straight and that saliva neutralizes the acids in Coke and other acidic foods such as orange juice, something equally corrosive (just ask my gastroenterologist who will not let me and my weak guts anywhere near a three block radius of o.j.).  Back in the day, the president of Coca Cola, Bill Robinson, was so defensive about his product not promoting tooth decay in children he claimed, “The only way our product could harm children would be for a case of Coke to fall out a window and hit them.”

This conversation prompted Someone That Sounds a Lot Like Me to bleat:

Someone That Sounds a Lot Like Me:  What a ridiculous waste of a steak! Who thinks up this crap?

Undaunted, the discussion continued and someone, possibly Someone That Sounds a Lot Like Me, suggested:

Someone That Sounds a Lot Like Me:  It kind of makes you wonder what would happen if a Twinkie was soaked in Coke.

Greg:  Yeah!

(not) Under Ling (anymore):  We should do that and find out!

Seizing this opportunity to open the passageway to heightened morale I invested $3.59 in a package of Twinkies  and two cans of Coca Cola, one regular and the other, diet.

Ready, set ...

(not) Under Ling (anymore) immediately announced that she wanted to soak her Twinkie in regular Coke.  Always the gentleman, Greg announced:

Greg:  Go for it.

Go! (not) Under Ling (anymore) takes a Twinkie.

Illustrated below is a completely unscientific experiment conducted over the course of 6 ½ hours.  (not) Under Ling (anymore) chose to pour her can of regular Coke into the glass first.  Then, she dunked her Twinkie into the brew.

Regular Coke dunk.

We've got a floater!

Greg chose to place his Twinkie in the glass first and then he poured his can of Diet Coke over it, saturating it from the get-go.

Greg's Twinkie in glass.

Greg pouring his can of Diet Coke over his Twinkie.

Submerged Twinkie bobbed straight to the top, floating in Diet Coke.

Both Twinkies were immediately saturated with Coke to the touch, and Greg, who licked his finger announced (in response to the Twinkie in Diet Coke):

Greg:  Tastes like mint.

Me:  Really, not like chicken?

(not) Under Ling (anymore):  No way am I tasting that!

We changed locations should any uninvited guests enter the premises and ask  questions.

An hour later: Twinkie floating in regular Coke bubbling. Note: smells like a Twinkie and Coca-Cola.

An hour later: Twinkie floating in Diet Coke bubbling less. Note: smells like a Twinkie floating in a more chemically smelling Coke.

We resisted inhaling from this point on.

3 hours later: Twinkie in regular Coke leaking filling and sinking.

3 hours later: Twinkie in Diet Coke leaking filling and floating

4 hours later: semi-sunk Twinkie floating in regular Coke.

Side view partially dissolved Twinkie semi-sunk in battery acid, oops, regular Coke.

4 hours later: Twinkie in Diet Coke nesting in bed of leaked filling aka "gross root beer float stage".

6 1/2 hours later: Greg piercing surface of Twinkie semi-submerged in Diet Coke noting that the crust has hardened.

Greg blending mashed Twinkie in Diet Coke.

Greg blending Twinkie in regular Coke.

Chunks of Twinkie in regular Coke. The key word is, "Gnarly."

Results at day's end.

Overhead view with a little Diet Coke spillage.

In conclusion, both sponge cakes remained only partially submerged throughout the 6 1/2 hours, never entirely sinking until Greg mixed them at the end of the day.  This proved to us that they were more sponge than cake, but not nearly as appetizing as a sponge.  The end result is that worker curiosity was satisfied and  worker morale was easily uplifted an entire millimeter.

Lame Adventure 49: Bathroom Matters

The time has come to steer Lame Adventures straight into the toilet.  Elsbeth, my boss, is a respected award winning interior designer.  On the night she won her most recent accolade for creating an eye-catching three-dimensional tile, I was undergoing colon prep.  While my Lord and Master was clutching her trophy and delivering a speech thanking the little people I was completely indisposed.  As soon as she could escape the glare of the flash bulbs, she forgot that I had specifically told her that I was spending the evening evacuating my being.  While I am relieving myself voluminously, an elated Elsbeth calls and leaves a message on my home answering machine.

Elsbeth:  We won!  We won!  We won! (pause)  Are you there? (remembering) Oh! … I know where you are, uh, well … Just wanted you to know we won!

Insert sound effect:  toilet flushing.

One of Elsbeth’s most inspired creative feats, at least amongst her staff, has been the red light in our office that she had the company craftsman install a few years ago.  If I recall the root of Elsbeth’s inspiration, it was her very own bladder after gulping down yet another 20-ounce bottle of Diet Coke.  When this light bulb is lit, this notifies us when our bathroom is occupied.  This is great since our bathroom is inconveniently located outside our office in our department’s warehouse.  That light bulb was truly another stroke of Elsbethian genius.  Prior to its existence, often one would trek through the warehouse, over to the bathroom, only to find the door shut, forcing the outsider to make a decision, do you wait or return later?

If the occupier was our former cleaning lady, Agnes the Bitter, a pygmy sized woman who excelled at vacuuming near ones desk whenever one was on a business call, odds were good that you might have to wait up to half an hour for her to emerge.  This was not due to A the B diligently cleaning every inch of our bathroom with a toothbrush, it just happened to be her choice destination to park herself with her cell phone.  Since the advent of the red light, our bathroom was no longer a safe haven of privacy for A the B to grouse about how overworked she was, although I suspect that once that red light bulb was installed, it was topic A on her call sheet for weeks on end.

Fast forward to the present.  I am sitting at my desk re-proofreading the same document to the point of developing hysterical blindness, when I polish off my third cup of tea in two hours.  Suddenly I feel the need to urinate with an urgency akin to my ancestors, if any of them happened to be tea-drinking barnyard animals.  I steal a glance in the direction of the red light.  It’s not lit.  I think, “Oh happy day!”

Yes! Vacant!

Fleet of hoof, I race to the bathroom, turn on the light, but before closing the door, I see this:

Maneuver of an imbecile.

With bladderial floodwaters rising rapidly, I defy the odds, speed-race back to my desk, and grab my camera to take the above image.  Then, I am free to thoroughly drain my being.  I emerge feeling three gallons lighter with slight dry-eye and itchy knuckles.

Back in the office, I immediately show the picture to my colleagues, Greg, Elaine and Ling.  Both the Quiet Man and Elsbeth are on the phone so they’re spared.  Greg is quite sure that The Company Blockhead was the culprit.  One of the requirements for anyone working under Elsbeth is that your signature is not your thumbprint.  Therefore, this does appear to be the handiwork of the love child of a small soap dish and a tree stump.  An old adage claims that a picture is worth a thousand words, but I deduce that the positioning of this toilet paper roll rates just eleven more:

This is a statement in the language of bathroom etiquette stupidity.

Groan. Occupied.