Unexpected Pleasures

Once upon a time, I lived in North Carolina. Have I mentioned that? Well, I did. That’s where all my bank stories come from. Anyway, I was there for school. After classes one day, I made a run to Target as a favor for my friend, Nicole. I only made that trip because I was already going there to get some milk and cereal for myself. I always like to have those things handy. Okay, really, I would’ve gone even if I didn’t need anything for myself. I’d have done anything for that family. It’s because I’m nice. And stupid.

While at the store, the one thing I needed to get for Nicole turned into several things. One of these included some disposable bowls. I went with Dixie, ’cause it’s a pretty recognizable brand. On the packaging, it claimed the bowls were “strong enough to save the day.”

Really? Let’s unpack that statement a little.

What if you find yourself in a hostage situation? Are these bowls going to somehow negotiate with the terrorists? Are they going to make sure you get home safely to your family without being blown up by the vest full of C4 the bad guys forced you to wear and said would look good on you, but really it just makes you look bloated?

Meteor StrikeWhat if you find yourself in a Michael Bay movie and there’s some kind of comet plummeting toward the earth? Are these bowls strong enough to capture that comet, saving the planet from total destruction?

I really think the only tragedy that these things can avert is the kind that involves things leaking through cheaper paper bowls. The good people at Dixie better hope we’re not faced with a galactic crisis, ’cause the first place I’m going is to those bowls. And if those bowls fail to save the day, Dixie’s looking at a pretty extensive lawsuit.

The true unexpected pleasure for that day came when I stopped for lunch at the McDonald’s. The line at the drive-thru was horrendous, so I parked and went inside. No one was in line at the counter, so I knew I had made a wise decision. It also turned out to be incredibly serendipitous. When I ordered my food, the girl at the counter gave me a cup for my drink. I walked over to the fountain machine and what awaited my thirsty lips? Fruitopia: Strawberry Passion Awareness.

This particular Fruitopia flavor was my drink of choice in the mid- to late-90s. I had thought it long since extinct. Lo and behold, McDonald’s offered it in a convenient fountain beverage. See, if I had gone to the window, I’d have just ordered a Coke and never known what I was missing. I’ve never seen the Fruitopia anywhere since, so it could have all been a hallucination. But I’m so glad lots of people wanted a Big Mac for lunch that day.


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