No, I am not selling this product. However, history must be observed. It was on this date in 1894 that the concoction was first sold in bottles. The cola wars and the soft drink industry has been a major part of our culture. Too much so, for who can deny that we would all be better off if only we stopped the consumption of the stuff entirely?
My Dad used to confound the young waitresses in restaurants by ordering "Adam's Ale." Of course he was referring to nature's original drink and the only one that is an absolute condition of our existence.
A few snippets of cola history from my own youth, the reflections for my own entertainment. But of course I hope you enjoy them, and perhaps recall some of your own experiences.
1) Soft drinks were a virtual unknown in our household when I was a child. However, on very rare occasions Dad would bring home a bottle of Pepsi Cola (with "12 full ounces-- that's a lot!"). Mom would combine it with a like amount of water and each of us would get a glass of the wonderful treat along with our supper. Very rare. And obviously memorable.
2) As I grew and eventually acquired means of earning small amounts of cash, my taste turned to RC cola. Again, twelve ounces as opposed to the six and one-half ounces Coke provided for the same nickel. I liked Dr. Pepper, too, but should I include that fact in a cola tale? I have earlier recounted my penchant for buying a bottle of RC and a five-cent pack of Planters Peanuts, taking a long swig of the cola and pouring the peanuts into the throat of the bottle. Mmmmmm!
3) The deposit on pop bottles was two cents. (Yes, they were "pop" bottles. "Soda" was something Mom used in cooking or gave you a dose of when you had a belly-ache.) This bottle deposit was a boon to us kids, because, people being the slobs they are, often threw the bottles out along the road, just as many morons dispose of their trash yet today. We would collect the bottles and turn them in at the corner grocery for the proceeds. Which of course the grocer got back immediately because of the candy counter and pop case.
4) When I was very young, I was introduced to the soda fountain at the Woolworth's. This by my friend who somehow had the means to patronize such a place. Lime Coke was pretty good, but again a dime and the glass was very small. Donald preferred something he called a "phosphate," whatever that might have been.
5) As a teenager I delivered telegrams for Western Union. I would often stop on a hot summer day in the lobby of the Mining Exchange building where the Coke machine would take ten cents of my hard-earned pay. Ten cents because, though the pop was a nickel, the bottles were too small to quench my thirst and I required two of them.
What memories of your youth do these tales evoke?