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Variety is Over-rated

By Gloria Diaz

Check out Gloria's Blog — Edge of Gloria!

Fort Wayne Reader

2006-09-18


If the economy depended on people like me, it would screech to a grinding halt. Oh sure, I buy stuff, but Rolex watches, Cadillac Escalades and Coach handbags donít end up on my shopping lists. I fall prey to impulse purchases from time to time (anyone want a Hershey bar? No? How Ďbout some AA batteries?) but itís usually the same stuffógroceries, a couple magazines, feminine hygiene, and meals out at restaurants.

I realized as I pulled away from a southwest Fort Wayne convenience store that I donít crave change in my food and drink. All I wanted was some plain old bottled wateróI should have re-filled the big bottle of Ice Mountain Iíd purchased the day before, but I didnít. So I broke down and bought two bottles of regular Dasani. I noticed the same brand had other flavors, like raspberry and lemon. I guess itís not enough to have decent drinking water. No. It has to be flavored. Which is why the economy would grind to a halt if it depended on me. I donít collapse with joy when the food emporiums come out with their ďsummer menusĒ or new concoctions.

Thatís the way it is with a lot of stuff these days. Pepsi and Coke have a bunch of flavor variations, including coffee. Coffee-flavored Coke? Yup, itís called Coke Blak. And now thereís Ho Hos with caramel. Yuck. Donít forget the humble yet satisfying french fry, which used to just be saturated with grease. Now, fries have cheese on them, chili, chili with cheese, gravy (a Canadian thing, check out the KFC in Windsor, Ontario, if you donít believe me) or at the very least, spicy seasoning. Coffee barely tastes like coffee anymore, and the fast food folks are hell-bent on keeping this country fat with the latest Texas-sized bacon cheeseburger combo. Can you supersize that too? Oh hell, just throw a steak on top of it, smothered in onions and topped with chili cheese fries. All washed down with a black cherry with a touch of vanilla infused with pomegranate 32-ounce Coke, please.

Maybe our taste buds are so jaded, we actually need variety to keep going. Not me. Give me a steak, no onion, no mushrooms, plain french fries, basic iceberg lettuce salad (no dressing) with plain old Coke. Boring, I know. But if the terrorists decide to hijack the spices and flavorings of this great nation, only I and a handful of other people will be functional enough to engage in the Great Flavor War. And when we emerge victorious and you are once again able to partake of a strawberry/banana/pineapple Moolatte infused with a touch of Red Bull and topped off with a caramel Ho Ho, I expect a big ďthank you.Ē

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