Friday, February 1, 2008

It has vitamins! And minerals!

I was enchanted by a television commercial I saw several weeks ago that was advertising the latest permutation of Diet Coke. It is called Diet Coke Plus and it is fortified with vitamins and minerals. Vitamins! And minerals! In Diet Coke! Have you ever heard of anything so brilliant?

I immediately wished to buy some. Because what could be more fulfilling than drinking a slurpy-fizzy Diet Coke while knowing that you are getting your daily allotment of vitamins? And minerals?

In our household, the grocery budget usually doesn't run to actual Diet Coke. I always buy Big K soda pop, which is Kroger's version of Diet Coke. The fine folks at Kroger made the effort last year to grace us with Big K Diet Cola with Lime, a gesture which I greatly appreciated. But they aren't yet on the vitamins-and-minerals bandwagon. However, a momentous occasion such as Diet Coke Plus called for a splurge.

"Oooh, lookie!" I said, bringing our shopping cart to a halt in front of a colorful display. "Diet Coke Plus! It's here!"

My husband was much more interested in a nearby display of Coors Light. "Plus what?" he asked absently.

"Plus vitamins! And minerals!"

"In Diet Coke?" he said incredulously and began laughing.

"What?" I asked him, hurt. "Why are you laughing?"

"Diet Coke Plus?" he snorted. "With vitamins and minerals? Pleeeeeeaaaase..."

I turned the nearest case over to read the nutrition facts on the back of the box. "This product has 25% of the daily requirement of niacin, 25% of B6, 25% of vitamin B12 and 15% of the daily requirement of magnesium and zinc," I read triumphantly.

"Does it also whiten your teeth and reduce fine facial lines?"

"Why are you being so mean about this, Mr. McSmartypants?"

"Because we're talking about Diet Coke. It's full of of chemicals and it takes calcium out of your bones. They use that crap to take the rust off battleships."

[My husband drinks water. Only water. Well, and beer. But not much beer and enough water weekly to fill a swimming pool. From thus comes his superior attitude.]

"They use real Coke for that," I countered sulkily.

"It hardly matters," he said in a lofty tone.

I administered my parting shot. "If we buy this, it will reduce our grocery bill by negating the need to buy me both soda pop and a vitamin supplement."

My husband rolled his eyes and made that scoffing noise that sounds like chuh. "Whatever." He loaded a twelve pack onto our card and we moved along. I already felt healthier, my step springier, my skin more lustrous, my bones more solid.

So I've been drinking Diet Coke Plus all week now, and to be honest, I don't feel one bit different. Which is disappointing. Because I was hoping to -- you know -- have the energy to do the things at which my enthusiasm ordinarily flags. Like cleaning the bathroom. Or wiping out the inside of the fridge.

Maybe it's a good thing after all.

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