And since I only just spotted this after I posted…
Back in high school, I was on a field trip with a three-to-four hour drive to and from and about twenty other theater students. We’d taken the same trip up to Austin every year we were in the class, and every time we would stop at the same gas station. All us kids got on the bus at about five in the morning, sleeping for the first two hours until we got to that concrete oasis, and when we stopped the few who’d already woken up would shake everyone else and we’d pull our somewhat disheveled selves out of the bus and into the station’s convenience store.
Since it was an all day trip, most of us had a few bucks for lunch and maybe a few more out of our allowance. Mom usually sent me out the door with a ten or a twenty when I went on these trips, and I wasn’t the only one so richly gifted (yeah, it was the nineties, but twenty dollars was a lot when I was fifteen and it was a poor community). So each of us would slump into the convenience store to get a Dr. Pepper and a donut or something of that nature.
Not Derek. (Name not changed. Maybe he reads these boards. If so, Hi Derek! :)) He was an occasional friend and probably the reason I tend to get on with bitter sarcastic social misfits. He got his Dr. Pepper, but he’d sworn blind before the trip that his big purchase was going to be the bag of 100 Pixy Stix. All of us were excited. How much straight sugar could we really handle?
We were about to find out.
Just eating the stix got dull after the five-or-so of us had about six each. Blue was decided to be the best flavor, and we did briefly try mixing flavors to determine the ambrosia of artificiality. Some of us (I don’t believe I did) actually SNORTED a bit of the sugar like cocaine, because Drugs Are Cool (Note to kids: drugs are not cool). Blue was also decided to be the best to snort.
The following is an illustration of how poor our old chemistry teacher was – had we known enough about how carbonation works, we would have known the outcome of this marvelous experiment before attempting it. But since we’d determined blue was the best flavor for tasting and inhaling, what would happen when it was combined with the Chateau Lafitte of all sodas, the Dr Pepper? Surely we would be sent to some marvelous plane of taste. Or possibly Willy Wonka’s factory.
None of us was wise enough to warn of the carnage to follow.
With some ceremony, after freshly opening his 20-ounce bottle of soda, Derek poured the tube of blue pixitude in.
What followed, of course, was the most impressive volcano this side of Mount Saint Helens or water and baking soda. To Derek’s credit, only a few drops of soda made their way onto the floor. He thought quickly – the only way he could prevent himself from making a big enough mess that we’d never go on one of these field trips again was to cut off the flow of soda-fountaining, so he stopped it the only way he could.
By putting his mouth over the opening, naturally.
His face began to redden as we all, as one, began to laugh hysterically. I’d swear there was Dr Pepper coming out of his ears. The girls in the group (me and one or two others, really) stopped laughing first, patting his back and asking if he was quite all right. The pertinent question was asked after Derek had the chance to stop drinking Pepper-froth and take a breath, laughing at himself and wiping off his mouth:
“So. How DID it taste?”
Regrettably, I do not recall an answer.