There is a Cherry Coke Zero shortage and I am very despondent about it.
You see I am an addict.
Ever since the introduction of this delicious elixir, there has been no other option for my beverage pleasure.
I'm not the only one, either. There is a small and might faction of Cherry Coke addicts and I almost universally love every single one I've met. Maybe I should start a Cherry Coke Zero cult.
I mean, the evolution of the branding alone (especially if we include all the Cherry Coke proper versions.)
You see Cherry Coke Zero is the perfect mix of caffeine and sweet, but then also no sugar.
Cherry Coke proper is too sweet for an every day drink for my taste buds, but every now and then it is an indulgent treat.
Coke Zero is a bland nothing of a wasteland and I miss the black can formula. It was a lot more palatable.
Don't even get me started on Pepsi. I am a Georgia girl after all.
However I will regale you with a tale from my High School Days.
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My dad loved me in the strangest ways and it's not something I'm complaining about. He figured out the things I really valued and gave them back to me, but made it unique and special. One day I will tell you how important roller coasters were to this man who couldn't even ride them because of multiple heart attacks, but today is about dranks.
In High School, I was still a full-sugar girl, but our town was a dry county (no Cherry Coke available for whatever mystery reason, but it was also alcohol free too, maybe? I was very anti-booze then so I don't remember). Social Circle is a tiny one-stoplight town in Georgia, so to say it was backwoods would be an understatement.
When we went to the 'big city', getting a bottle of Cherry Coke was a true treat. And we're getting back to that spot nowadays whenever I get lucky enough to find some Cherry Coke Zero. Especially in cans. WTF happened to the Cherry Coke Zero cans?!!?!
Then, Pepsi released Wild Cherry Pepsi and ya girl was hooked!
Best part was? They sold it at one of the gas stations in Social Circle. There were only, like, two, so this was a Big Deal.
Instead of just buying me one every now and then like a normal person, my dad talked to the owner of the station and made a deal with him.
It was a deal that would spoil me for life and I'm just now realizing it.
Every month, my dad would stop by this gas station and pick up an extra pallet of Wild Cherry Pepsi in 20-oz bottles and brought it home. I savored them every month, just like Charlie did with the candy bar in that chocolate factory book.
I had it timed pretty good too, where I'd just finish up one pallet as the other was coming in. Since then, I don't think I've ever gone without a fully stocked Jacki-fridge. Nowadays, it also includes Mickey-drinks too, though.
Which is why I'm so trouble by this Cherry Coke Zero shortage. I miss my cans. Sometimes I can find the minis or 20-oz bottles, but it's just not the same. It's not what I'm used to.
That said, I've had to resort to buying Diet Cherry Pepsi sometimes and, while it doesn't hit the same as Wild Cherry Pepsi did in the 90s, it's still a good trip down memory lane.