Monday, December 31, 2012

The Saddest New Year's Eve Party Ever

This is Better...

...than anything I've ever done with this dumb blog.  Here.

This is a page from a notebook that the poster found somewhere.  Back when I was a kid we'd order mixed sodas and called them "suicides".  "Can I have an orange and Coke and 7-Up suicide, please."

A lot of these seem pretty safe, Sept 30th gave five stars to "pink lemonade, cranberry juice, sierra mist".  That sounds like something my wife would drink.  September 29th, though, gives two stars to Sierra Mist, orange juice and Dr. Pepper - this would seem to indicate that the tester wasn't an insane person.

Notice that the uncolored pieces are also unrated, the tester planned/drew out a number of tests in the future and was then coloring  the sodas in and assigning ratings later.  The drawings aren't of the actual unmixed sodas but are really just a graphical way to represent the proportions of what went into them - which is great.  I do not demand photorealism in my mixed soda visuals.

The most important thing to walk away with from this would be a wariness towards Fruit Punch and Mountain Dew mixed in a 60/40 ratio.  It's the last completed entry and might have very well been what killed the tester and caused the discontinuation of the experiment.

But, this is pretty and maybe I should recreate some of this on my own...

(Thank you Sherry W. for sharing the link to this great image)

Friday, November 30, 2012

Blue Collar Coke

The fountain dispenser at Blue Collar in Williamsburg has the best fountain Coke of my adult life. Syrupy and sweet, I wish they had crushed ice.

The counter person affirmed that it was regular Coke but suggested that maybe the awesome old fashioned soda machine had something to do with it. Not in a mystic way but something to do with the syrup ratio or something.

Hamburger is pretty good too.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Watt's Tower Seven-Up

This isn't the kind of lime that normally goes in cement. 

This photo courtesy of our field correspondent traveling through L.A.  You might recognize it from Grand Theft Auto - San Andreas.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Dark Berry Mountain Dew

The most important thing to know as we move forward with this review is that I am a seriously handsome guy.  My beard is lush and waves in the wind, I haven't a single feature that would be described as other than "finely chiseled".  When I move my head hair tosses and eyes twinkle, when I shrug well-toned muscles ripple, and when I walk all the ladies swoon - and many of the men.

So here's the high point of this review for you, dear reader:  I open the bottle of Dark Berry Mountain Dew, toss my head back with all the requisite waving of hair and rippling of muscles, and take a drink.  The first bit there was pretty good, but it gets better:  Dark Berry Mountain Dew sloshes out of the corner of my mouth, it sounds silly but I assure you it happened in a very sexy way.  The soda rushes through the sieve of my beard and pours down my shirtless chest, over my six pack abs, and moistens the top of my underwear.

It was awesome.  I was standing in front of a window and actually saw the tree outside shiver with arousal.

That right there is review enough for you.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Tropical Banana

That's all - Tropical Banana.  Not Tropical Banana Fanta or any other brand name, just "Tropical Banana".  No brand name is attached to this, and as far as I can tell no manufacturer either.  Producto Centroamericano Hecho...  Blah blah blah.

Oh, I guess it was made by a joint called Cerveceria Hondurena, they have a crazy website which seems to say that they make things that are wet, including beer.

So it smells awful.  There's nothing good about the fake banana smell ever.  It tastes not great, not even that good, but there's a weird creamy aftertaste which keeps bringing me back.  It has a tang, not like a banana but a bit like a green banana.  Something just a bit off.

In fact, the more I drink it the more the aftertaste pleases me.  If I could get this aftertaste without putting the actual drink in my mouth I think we'd have something.

Holy shit, I got it.  The drink tastes like spray paint smells, but in a good way.  I like the spray paint smell, I find the same pleasure in this that I find in the odor of non-metallic sprays.  Nice.  That's it entirely.

I want these people to make a cola, it would be fantastic.  Seriously, if fake banana - the worst taste ever - is this good coming from them then they would be able to make poop taste magnifico.

All in all, this stuff deserves a magnificent review about how complexely bad/good it is, but my new austerity style reviews can't handle that.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Crush Strawberry

Or Strawberry Crush.  Whatev.  The best thing about this stuff is how little it tastes like strawberry.  If I squint my taste buds, it runs through like Strawberry Twizzler, or cherry something. 

When it comes to chemical flavoring, strawberry is second in awful only to banana.  This stuff somehow does it right.  And it's not too fizzy, either.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Tahitian Treat Fruit Punch

Imagine you're on a subway platform and a big, scary looking dude starts cursing at you and shaking his fists.  It's definitely you he's talking to, it's 3am and no one else is around.  Then he dashes up the steps and you're all "There ain't no way he's coming over here" but he does.  The menacing guy stomps down the steps, looking mean as hell, walks up to you, reaches into his jacket like he's going for a gun, then pulls out a twenty dollar bill and gives it to you.  "Enjoy this, young man", says he and leaves.

That's Tahitian Treat Fruit Punch. 

Reed's Cherry Ginger Beer

Okay, stick your tongue out about half and inch and bite it lightly.  Bend your chin down tight against your neck and nod your head up and down while flapping your arms around like broken penguin wings.

There.  You just drank Reed's Cherry Ginger Beer.

Smells like sour cherries, which is always a bad idea.  Not like sour cherries, but like sour cherry flavoring you see in Polish markets.  What genius said "Let's go to an Eastern European market and find the nastiest thing there that isn't kvass, and then let's mix it into our soda?"

This stuff is bad.  About eight bads out of ten.  Fifteen bucks would get me to finish the bottle but I ain't seeing any takers.

Russian "Soft Drink Lemonade"

I get the name off of the lying import label.  It's not lemonade, it's some sort of orange drink.  But classy.  A classy russian orange drink, I feel like I am a classy kid pretending to drink a dry champagne while sipping on this stuff. 

But yeah.  Not much more to say.  Doesn't really taste like oranges. 

Pretty good, actually.  None of the comedy you'd expect to see with Russians making soft drinks.  Just plain old not awful.

Basil Seed Drink

Shit like this makes science fiction novels seem all pale in comparison.  It looks like I'm drinking frog eggs but I don't have to get all grossed out over drinking frog eggs, rather I get all grossed out of the taste of drinking magic gelatin basil seeds. 

Drinking it is fun, is awesome, couldn't be better.  I could go through the physical action of drinking this stuff all day if I didn't have to taste it.  Why do basil seeds taste like bananas?  Seriously.  Oh, wait, it's because they put banana flavoring in the drink. 

Why would you do that?  I guess for something banana flavored it's not as vile as it could be.

I like how the ingredients break down is done:

water 54.44%
basil seed 32%
cane sugar 13%
honey .5%
banana flavor .06%

That little bit of banana flavor goes a long fucking way.

This percentages thing makes a lot of sense, though, and is exactly the sort of thing that we will never ever see in the US because we don't want to know how much chemical swill we consume. 

Anyways, this stuff isn't totally awful.  I wish it came in tiny, clear bottles. 

Big Shot Pineapple Soda

Boasting that it's "New Orleans Own", we are forced to question whether New Orleans has many good ideas.  This one, I think, started out as:

"Hey, let's make taking medicine fun!" and by the time they'd gotten through legal they were left with a vaguely pineapple tasting soda.  That dude on the can needs to go back to Gasoline Alley and stick to working on cars.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Monday, March 19, 2012

National Balsa is the Blended Corn Drink of Wood Providers

No sodas are involved here, if you are seeking humorous soft drink reviews please move along.

Summary: I bought a specialty plywood from a place called "National Balsa", little one by two foot sheets. They sent me warpy, crappy wood undoubtedly laboring under the misconception that I wanted to build a miniature half-pipe for my extensive "finger board" collection. Unfortunately, I wanted straight boards and not a fun house mirror and they should've known that because all of my finger boards are MINT IN BOX and I'm famous for that. That the plywood had "MADE IN FRANCE" printed on the good facing was just icing on the shit pie.

Rather than make you read the whole stupid thing, I'll cut to the chase - I got two responses from two different employees, one of them acknowledged that they'd had problems with other deliveries of the quality of the ply I'd bought and the other said that their ply was fine. Both of them told me that since it was 38 days since placing the order that they wouldn't accept a return, even if the plywood had been in transit fourteen of those days.

These guys acted like jerks. I'm going to share my letter so as to heap opprobrium upon them in the public internet sphere of you guys:

Two responses to an initial email sent within ten minutes of each other from the company:

11:54 AM (12 hours ago)

to me
Hi Tim
The lite ply is not manufactured here, it is the norm for the plywood we have
The made in France stamp is nothing we have control over.
The original email date of March 6th is well past our 30 day return policy and I am sorry there is not anything we can do about it at this point
Thank you
National Balsa

11:41 AM (12 hours ago)

to me


I am very sorry for the delay in responding to the email.

We did have a problem with some of the lite ply. And i am very sorry you received less then satisfactory product. This is partly the reason we inform people to check their order when it is delivered. It is well past the 30 day mark for returns, even at the march 6th email.

We order the lite ply from another company, not sure why it said made in France?

I will check with the appropriate people and get back to you

Here's my response to which I never received a response. I'll bold what I think are the clever bits:

Hey there,

I'm not asking for a refund, I knew I wouldn't be getting a refund when I was forced to use the wood at the laser studio. I was foolish to trust your product, I should have checked the wood before I went to cut - the fault was mine. Lesson learned. I do take a bit of issue with "This is partly the reason we inform people to check their order when it is delivered", at no point did I receive an instruction to do so that I know of. No such instruction in an email confirmation because I never received one, the invoice doesn't say it, the box doesn't say it. I won't argue that point though.

Rather I'll be a little horrified that a rep from your company says "
We did have a problem with some of the lite ply" and you folks didn't check it before it was sent out. Wow. That you acknowledge the problem and in the same paragraph state that you refuse to replace it shows a certain lack of customer care. That there is "nothing you can do about it" is a dodge, of course - you can do whatever you want about it. You could replace it, or refund my money, or have said on your website "we have problems with the lite ply and it might come with Made in France stamped on the clean face". Saying that "The lite ply is not manufactured here, it is the norm for the plywood we have" is not an answer because it indicates that ALL of your lite ply is bent like a cartoon canoe and you shouldn't be selling it.

Instead you say that "
It is well past the 30 day mark for returns, even at the march 6th email" - if you'd read my email properly you'd know I wasn't returning anything as I'd used it and had it fail already. I never once asked to return anything, I was simply pointing out that you sold me an inferior product. Maybe I was just looking for an apology. And you know what, even though I wasn't asking for it I'm going to point out that eight days after the refund cut-off deadline is not "well past". Especially after you took two weeks to ship it to me. But this whole paragraph is an aside, do not be distracted by it.

Yep, I should have checked the order - unboxed and unwrapped the sheets the moment I got 'em. Unfortunately, I trusted a company selling something akin to a precision wood to sell me something akin to a precision wood. You folks sent me junk which I tried to make work and which, for the most part, didn't work - costing me more money and time.

I am thinking that in a business like yours it's foolish to ruin a possible relationship with a first time customer, what sort of casual consumer buys ten sheets of a specialty plywood once and never again? Over what was probably $25 worth of stock and $10 worth of shipping you've guaranteed that I'll never order from you again. You also make me give voice to anyone who is listening about your product, people who buy specialty plywoods tend to run in packs and give each other references. I was referred to you by [an architecture college] fabrications guy, he saw the lite ply and made fun of it. He found out where it was from and apologized. That was a while ago, earlier today I read him both of your companies email responses and he was no longer disappointed - he was angry.

Apparently you folks sold some bum stuff to more than one of his students, and then were rude about it on the phone to a girl who called to complain. The [college] sources list, he said, is being amended.

I'm not sure how much business [the college's] architecture school provides your company, probably not a whole heck of a lot, but you've driven generations of inept model building architects to different wood providers.

I didn't expect a refund, I didn't expect replacement, I no longer expect an appropriate apology. I'll take my $55.69 out in pot shots at you folks on the internet.


tim h

PS - I included BOTH of your companies responses to my last email below in bold to help allay any confusion, I excerpted from both and don't want anyone thinking I'm putting words into mouths. Next time you might want to have the nice, competent person handle the customer responses and tell the balsabug responder to hush up. Or tell the other responder to be quiet and not reveal the disingenuousness concealed in the balsabug response, one of you admits lite ply problems and the other says it's just how it is. Not so smooth.
I'll confess that my email seemed a little funnier when I wrote it at midnight many weeks ago. And I never got a response.

So if you are a model maker or an RC plane enthusiast or a model train dude or a dabbling architect or a laser cut fiend or an art guy who likes expensive plywood, avoid National Balsa. They suck bals, eh?

I'll be trying a place called "Lone Star" next time around.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

My God...'s full of stars.

Old Pepsi Sign, Heavy on the Quirky

I've taken photos of this sign at least six times with all the best intentions - "Ooh," thought Tim of the past, "I can write marvelous things about this delightfully quirky old sign".

Past Tim is an idiot is all I can say. This sign is pretty fucking boring, be it ever so sassily sunbleached, and I can't think of much to say about it.

If I was an actual soda historian I'd be all into identifying the ancient labels and talking about how the Sunkist can in the bottom right was... I dunno... special. I don't care, I confess.


Sunday, March 4, 2012


Okay, I saw this post a few weeks ago and had to mull it over. What was wrong here?

No, not the hidden outline of the dude. That's specifically what's right about this image.

It's the background, the arrangement of the sodas o the shelves to be precise. I would say that this is not a soft drink selection found in nature, that it's carefully arranged in the studio. But it's still an awesome painting trick, right? Well, no. Follow my logic:

1. The guy had to arrange his own sodas in a staged setting.
2. The sodas are arranged in a very particular way, groupings of sodas that repeat throughout the shelves - not that the patterns repeat, just the blocks of sodas.
3. It's a very specific choice. Why?
4. Because he already had a soda suit, of course. He had the painted suit FIRST and had to build the background around it.

It's the only thing that makes sense.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Red Velvet Cream Tea Thing at Argo

I was getting all primed up for an "aaaarghhh-o" type of joke.

Using the metric of how much I suspected something would suck vs how good something turns out to be, the ridiculous Red Velvet tea drink at this Argo tea place ranks as the top drink I've ever tasted.

Expecting it to taste like flowery girl vomit, it turned out medium delicious. The ingredients didn't impress me, some fruit tea and raspberry syrup and my choice of dairy. The server recommended it hot and I accepted her advice, taking pleasure in the idea of making a bad thing worse. All the disappointed looks I've been saving up are going to waste, though, the server did me no wrong.

I will complain about the paper cup and plastic lid. I am drinking this in a tea shop, they should have given me a proper glass like in the picture. I'll also say that it was too hot at first, but you can tell I'm reaching, struggling for things to be unhappy about. It's a hard life when I am denied the disappointment I crave.

Even at $4, I could imagine drinking another one of these.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Terrible potato chips

I am eating Zapp's Mesquite BBQ potato chips and they aren't very good. Not quite terrible, but completely not BBQ flavored. They have a weird hint of cheap bodega vanilla cake that makes no sense whatsoever.

That's all. Just wanted to share one if the constant, tiny disappointments of my life.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Astral Conjunction

Normally I perk up when I get a $6.66 but this is even better.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

White Castle Love

White Castle Love

Because nothing says loving like using White Castle grease for
lubricant. Sex lubricant.

Every time I see a typographical error in an ad
like this I start looking for secret codes.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Double Cola

When I squint those two humps look either like
a butt or boobs, I can't decide.

The best thing about Double Cola is that it's "Bottled Under the Authority of Double Cola - USA". Seriously, I doubt that this stuff is put out by more than one bottler, and I bet that bottler is a guy stirring a big vat in his shed fearin' of the revenuers.

Double Cola is okay. Not great. It's unusual for me not to say about a cola that "'s still better than Coke or Pepsi". Well, this time I can't say that with all earnestness. It's good, it's not too syrupy, but it has a carbonated water taste that I don't really like.

It's made with "invert sugar", whatever that means. The sweetness is fine, I ain't got no trouble with that. It's just the weird aftertaste. I'll drink the whole bottle, though - fear not.

So yeah. A little boring, the review I mean. Sorry.

Friday, January 27, 2012

What the hell is this?

Ha ha! I'm a business and I'll rip you off for $1-20. I don't know what is selling but I don't think any of it's real. Hey, please mail me 3 lbs of Google.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Rollers at 7-11

The Slurpees at the 7-11 in downtown manhattan are pretty awful. The machines are seldom cleaned but the flavors often changed, yielding banana flavored Mountain Dew and other terrible tastes. One clerk actually had the nerve to claim the the varieties tasted mixed because the machines leaked into one another, a lie which if true must violate health codes. I also suspect that they dilute the mixes with far too much water or something, as halfway through a cup the Slurpee will be drained white as a cave lobster.

It's a cut-rate joint, in my opinion, and not a benefactor of the Brave New World of faux health food classiness that 7-11 adopted during it's Manhattan invasion. I loath being forced to go there, victim of corporate oppressors holding the sole keys of the Slurpee kingdom.

Actually no, I don't blame the corporation - I curse the lazy, corner cutting owners of that particular store. But last visit I suppose I was a victim of heartless corporation savagery. A hard tale, but I share with you the nightmare story of...

The Buffalo Chicken Roller!

WhooOOOooo. Yuuuucky ghost... I didn't know these rollers existed and was slipped one in place of a tacquito treat. The initial bite was a shock, the sort of surprise a bath house frequentor might experience if a strangers penis lacked its normal crunchy, deep fried shell and instead was confronted with a squishy hot dog. The horrible thing tasted like warmed Vienna sausage but was even more lacking in snap or texture. Or maybe it was like an Oscar Meyer take in a banger.

My first bite had me recoiling in horror, and it's hard to recoil from something in your mouth as it comes along with you - it's like trying to outrun your toupee. And it tasted like Buffalo flavored awful.

My first thought was that I had been delivered an improperly cooked food item and was poisoned. Then the roller vs tacquito conversation replayed in my mind, flashback style but in slow motion horror "you'll shoot your eye out kid" Santa-from-A-Christmas-Story style. Pride forbade my returning the thing so I toughed it out.

And I ate it. I did it, a small victory but never again. Never again.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

My Form Letter Meets Your Form Letter and "Fuck" is Involved but not in a Sexy Way

Dear Tim,

Thank you for contacting us at Pepsi-Cola regarding the availability of Caffeine Free Mountain Dew and Mountain Dew Throwback .

I am so sorry you are having a problem locating this product. We do operate under a franchise bottler system and as such, bottlers have the freedom to decide which product flavors and package sizes they will offer. For this reason, local availability can vary across the country.

To locate stores in your local area that might sell our products, (within a 50 mile radius), please log on to Simply click on the STORE LOCATOR tab in the upper right hand corner of the page, select the product you're trying to find, enter your zip code, and you'll see a list of the chain grocery stores and chain pharmacies closest to you that have sold the product in the last 30 days. This information is generated by stores that use computer scanning equipment in their check-out process.

If you would like additional assistance, please call our Consumer Relations department at 1 (800) 433-2652 Monday – Friday, 9am-6pm EST. When calling, please refer to the file number located at the bottom of this email.

Thanks again for contacting us.

Consumer Relations Representative


{\i DID YOU KNOW ... *** All of Pepsi-Cola’s plastic soft-drink bottles contain an average of 10% recycled plastic, and the average aluminum can contains 40% to 50% recycled aluminum. ***}

Dear Pepsico,

You're a bunch of jerks. You can't leave important decisions like this up the bottlers, they're idiots. A fucking bottler can't make a same tasting drink two weeks in a row, yet you trust them to know what the market is? Did no one tell the idiot bottlers that Mountain Dew Throwback would sell out of my local store within a day? Have you ever TRIED Caffeine Free Mountain Dew in the NYC area?

No. Seriously, you should fix this.



Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Koch Industries, Brawny Paper Towels

Not a soda, I know, but I couldn't resist writing a letter to Brawny telling them I wouldn't be buying any more of their paper towels because they are owned by Koch Industries. Seriously, that mustachio'd gentleman who traditionally adorns the wrapper would not approve of what the Koch dicks do.

Here was the response:

Thank you for contacting the Georgia-Pacific Consumer Response Center.
Georgia-Pacific places tremendous importance on the opinions we receive
from our consumers.

Georgia-Pacific is a wholly-owned, independently managed subsidiary of
Koch Industries. Koch companies, the Koch family and Koch foundations
have worked for more than 40 years to make the world a better place by
supporting market-based solutions to society's challenges. The company
believes that emphasis on market-based solutions is important, because
extensive historical and theoretical research shows that economic
freedom best fosters innovation, environmental stewardship and an
improved quality of life throughout society.

If you would like more information about Koch's record of responsible
operations, the company's market-based policy positions or its ongoing
efforts to promote economic freedom, please visit

We appreciate your comments and they have been forwarded to our
marketing personnel and management.

Consumer Response Center | 800-283-5547
I am completely baffled at their belief that economic freedom is equated with environmental stewardship. And the idea that a company can believe anything is ridiculous. It's frightening that I've used these paper towels to blot up messes, as they were obviously designed by retards.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

This Blog isn't Dead, I'm Just Bored...

...because it's fucking boring to write "Oh, this strawberry soda tastes like strawberries but a little chemical fake" for the eight-hundredth time. Seriously, give me a break. I was powered by foulness, by liquid malignancy passed off as child treats. I haven't found a soda evil enough to be reviewed.

And I'm lazy. That too.

I shit you not, I have six milk crates of sodas and threw away another three last time I moved. Soon they'll all be botulism flavored, which at least will give me a run for my money. I can't bring myself to drink another boring god-damn soda.



Shoot me.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Dr. Pepper Fucks Little Guy

So the NY Times has a great article about the big Dr. Pepper snuffing Dublin Dr. Pepper. Which sucks. I had one, it tasted better.


Thursday, January 12, 2012

The Work of the Devil

The world needs more White Castles, not less. Thus is a tragedy, painful and wrong. Seriously, someone needs to fix this.

The truly terrible thing, though, is that this is my fault. All 2012 I've been having my karmic balance aggressively maintained. I got my picture in the NYTimes, which was good, the next day I get a bunch of stitches in my hand - bad. Again and again, these wild swings...

The White Castle was shut down because earlier that day I'd struck up a delightful correspondence with a very respected game writer and it looked like we were sealing a Deal. Ba-zing, there goes the White Castle.

I'm so sorry.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Hotdogs and Chili at White Castle is Okay by Me, not to Give Anything Away

Okay, this is a Nathan's hot dog. Nathan's is a NYC institution type thing, with a delicious ur-restaurant in Coney Island and a handful of exceptionally shitty chain restaurants scattered hither and non. Your average Nathan's hot dog from a non-Coney Island restaurant is awful. Which reminds me:

At a Nathan's in Bay Ridge I laughed at the condiment bar, it had these dipping ladles and all around the troughs of toppings and etc there was food spilled everywhere. It was like the palsy brigade had come through and had a spazz-fest while trying to relish up their hotdogs. I laughed at the implied incompetency of the customers there. But the trouble was not with the retards that eat at Nathan's, it was with the condiment bar itself - the ladle handles were so long that you couldn't lift the ladle straight up out of the troughs without hitting the sneeze guard. You had to turn the ladle half on its side, spilling most of the contents. Hilarious and stupid.

But White Castle has somehow gotten Nathan's hot dogs right. This was one of the best hot dogs I've ever had, seriously. It also lacked that weird Nathan's butter taste that I'm not always a fan of. The mini-hot dog from White Castle is fantastic - soft yet with a slight bit of snap.


The chili, though, warn't so hot. The steak was chewy, the whole thing too greasy. Good as fuck on the hot dog though. Notice that cup behind the chili, it's a Mountain Dew not-Slurpee from a Hess station. It's fantastic.