Plenty Of Soda Still Available Across Nation

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Vol 33 Issue 18

Evil Genius' Cat Subpoenaed

WASHINGTON, DC–Esmerelda, the fluffy white Persian cat owned by evil genius Dr. Kronos, was subpoenaed Monday to testify regarding the alleged subterranean activities of Kronos. "The cat in question will be asked what she knows about Kronos' trafficking of plutonium across international borders, as well his construction of a massive undersea lair beneath the Pacific Ocean and the creation of an electro-pulse ray that can cause entire city populations to collapse of a seizure." In exchange for her testimony, Esmerelda will be granted full immunity, as well as a tin of Liverpool kippers served in a crystal goblet, precisely as she likes.

Résumé Accidentally Kept On File

CHICAGO–In a blunder being attributed to "clerical oversight," the Chicago ad agency of Meacham & Braun accidentally kept the résumé of recent University of Illinois graduate Chris DiMaio on file Monday. "We regret the inadvertent fulfillment of our promise to Mr. DiMaio to retain his résumé for future reference should a position that suits him become available at Meacham & Braun," said agency director Thomas Graydon. "As a result of this error, we are investigating our résumé-processing system and are confident that future résumés remitted to us, with the exception of those few that impress us, will be disposed of surreptitiously while we pacify the applicant with platitudes."

Motor Trend Car Of Year Stripped Of Title After Appearing As Hot Rod Centerfold

NEW YORK–Motor Trend magazine stripped the 1998 Chevrolet Corvette of its "Car Of The Year" title following the sportscar's appearance as Hot Rod magazine's June centerfold. "The Corvette has conducted itself in a manner unbecoming of a Motor Trend Car Of The Year," Motor Trend editor-in-chief Paul Brookman said, "and we can no longer in good conscience allow this automobile to represent the crown." Car Of The Year first runner-up, the 1998 Pontiac Grand Prix, will take the Corvette's place.

Senate Committee Links Child Poverty To Lack Of Child Jobs

WASHINGTON, DC–The Senate Select Committee On Child Poverty released a report Monday attributing the large number of American children living below the poverty line to a lack of child jobs. "If you want to know why 14 million children in this country are living in poverty, all you have to do is take a look at the U.S. child-unemployment rate–it currently stands at 99 percent," said committee chair Sen. Thad Cochran (R-MS). "If we are to have any chance of fighting child hunger, illiteracy and illness, we need to get these kids back on their feet and working again."

Free Needles To Drug Users?

President Clinton recently voiced strong opposition to a proposal to distribute free needles to heroin users to fight the spread of AIDS, claiming that such a plan would only encourage drug use. What do you think?

Couple Upstairs Going At It Again

BROOKLYN, NY–For the ninth time in as many hours, the couple upstairs went at it yet again at 4 a.m. Tuesday, hammering away at one another in an impressive display of sexual stamina and tenacity, apartment-directly-below sources said.

I'll Smoke Anything

Some guys brag that they only smoke weed. Powerful people often only smoke Cuban cigars. A lot of cigarette smokers are proud of their brand loyalty. Some smoke only herbal cigarettes. Others smoke only Indian beedies. Why's everyone so picky? I don't understand. Me? I'll smoke anything!
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FIFA Frantically Announces 2015 Summer World Cup In United States

ZURICH—After the Justice Department indicted numerous executives from world soccer’s governing body on charges of corruption and bribery, frantic and visibly nervous officials from FIFA held an impromptu press conference Wednesday to announce that the United States has been selected to host this summer’s 2015 World Cup.

Plenty Of Soda Still Available Across Nation

WASHINGTON, DC—In a report that bodes well for the future of U.S. carbonated-beverage consumption, the Commerce Department announced Monday that there is still plenty of soda available across the nation.

The Soda Age Chart

According to department findings, current U.S. soda-availability levels stand at an all-time high, with nearly all major soda-penetration indices—including manufacturing, bottling and retail-outlet distribution—operating at maximum capacity.

In addition, the national Liters To Citizens Ratio, widely considered the leading indicator of overall U.S. soda health, stands at an unprecedented 26.4 to 1.

Soda aisle in grocery store

"Americans have one less thing to worry about today. We are thrilled to issue America's soda supply a glowing report card," said jubilant Secretary of Commerce William Daley. "With soda access, convenience and affordability all at unprecedented levels, the threat of soda depletion has been virtually eradicated from our great nation."

The study comes as welcome news to many soda-industry observers who, in the past, feared that U.S. soda reserves might prove insufficient to meet the refreshment demands of the 21st century.

"Thank goodness there are no soda worries on the immediate horizon," said Stanford University professor Kyle Gurnee, a lifelong Pepsi advocate and frequent contributor to The Economist. "Many Americans take for granted the tremendous number of thirst-quenching options available in this country, but the truth is, the soft-drink availability we enjoy here is something people in other nations can only dream of. Consider the harsh reality of life in a place like Albania, to name but one example, where delicious carbonated beverages are, frighteningly, not within arm's reach at any given moment. Just imagine what it would be like."

According to the report, in 1998, the average American is never more than 30 feet from soda at any given time. Further, in addition to its tremendous availability and affordability, U.S. soda is also almost always chilled, thanks to refrigerated-display-case and thermal-insulated-portable-cooler technology that is second to none in the world.

"When it comes to the nuts and bolts of keeping soda ice-cold and conveniently located, America is truly ahead of the pack," Daley said. "No other nation, including Japan, boasts a soda-coolness-preservation infrastructure comparable to America's state-of-the-art point-of-purchase refrigeration network. In most parts of the U.S., it is actually considered unnecessary and impractical to add ice, so cold is our soda served."

The report went on to note that, as with overall U.S. soda output, the number of ounces in the average individual serving size has steadily increased since 1970, with personal soda receptacles as large as one liter now commonplace in most markets. In the two years since Pepsi's introduction of the 20-ounce "Big Slam" alone, the report noted, the nation's median soda-container volume has risen a stunning 41 percent.

"Thirty years ago, a small glass was sufficient for holding all the soda anyone would want to consume in a single sitting," said soda supplier James L. Carlisle of the Coca-Cola Corporation. "By 1975, that amount had risen due to a new standard, the 12-ounce can. Today, it is not unusual for a single soda-lover to drink an entire two-liter bottle in one sitting."

For years, the rising single-serving-size rate prompted widespread calls for an across-the-board reduction in U.S. soda consumption. But given the robust state of current U.S. soda production, all but a tiny handful of Americans are confident that the nation's soda providers will be able to meet not only the current demand, but whatever increased demand may come as drink sizes and per capita thirst continue to grow in the years to come.

"Fortunately," Carlisle said, "given the thriving nature of the current U.S. soda supply, not only can American consumers drink their favorite sodas more often, but they can help themselves to greater amounts each time they enjoy these delicious and refreshing sparkling beverages."

Added Carlisle: "Would you like a beverage?"

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