The Monster doesn’t drink soda (or pop if like him you are from the Midwest). No Coke, no Pepsi, no 7-Up or Slice or Fanta or Mountain Dew or Mr. Pibb or Fresca or Dr. Pepper or Tab (if Tab even still exists). The Monster could pretend it’s because soda is most likely the single biggest reason we’re mired in a nation of obesity, heart attacks and low expectations.
But that’s not it. The Monster doesn’t drink soda because of Jolt Cola.
As a youngster summers were spent working for Papa Monster in his warehouse. Papa Monster owned an alcohol distribution company and 99% of the product he supplied to restaurants, grocery stores and carry-outs The Monster couldn’t drink (at least legally and most assuredly not when working). But there was one product The Monster could drink and that was Jolt Cola. And The Monster drank it all day long during the summer of 1991.
For those who forget, Jolt Cola was the Red Bull of its day, its marketing campaign promoted “All the sugar and twice the caffeine.” It came in such flavors as Cherry Bomb, Citrus Climax, Orange Blast, White Lightning (grape), Red Eye, and Electric Blue. The can featured a lightning bolt and the ads targeted Jolt as the soda for the younger generation weaned on video games and MTV.
The Monster would wake up and have a Jolt Cola. Go to work and have another. Down one during lunch. Crush another midday. Closing time, Jolt Cola time. To say that by the end of the day The Monster was bouncing off the walls might be an understatement. He was crashing through the walls. And then The Monster discovered Jolt Gum. He could drink a Jolt Cola while chewing Jolt Gum and now The Monster was a true, honest to goodness superhero. Nothing could stop The Monster. Except of course the crash that inevitably came when the sugar and caffeine high ended.
And like many things done to excess, The Monster soon realized that perhaps Jolt Cola was winning. As the summer came to an end and work gave way to school, The Monster put down his Jolt Cola and replaced it with water and lemon.
All these years later and still he does not drink soda. But if you look up into the night sky, you may see streaking across the stars a superhero with a lightning bolt across his chest…