Posted by: Jeremiah Graves | October 20, 2008

Paleontology 101: An Introduction…

So I randomly had a dream the other night that I’d stumbled upon a time machine, or did I steal it…or maybe I’d built it or something?! I guess I don’t really remember, I was also 8 feet tall and wearing the Philly Phanatic costume through the entire dream, so facts aren’t exactly paramount to the point I’m getting to here.

The important thing is that while in control of the time machine I didn’t do anything cool like go back and tell myself to invest in Google, hook up with a pre-fame Britney Spears, abort Carrot Top or invent Guitar Hero. Instead what I did was go back and buy—yes buy, not even steal—many of the artifacts of my youth.

I loaded up on Crystal Pepsi, slap bracelets, Zubaz pants and Burger King Burger Buddies. When I woke up in the morning, I couldn’t help but think about all these seemingly buried fossils from the late ‘80s and early ‘90s.

As such, I’ve decided that I’ll occasionally get my blog-on in nifty lil series I’m referring to as “Paleontology 101: Digging up Artifacts of my Youth.”

So what the hell, let’s go ahead and kick things off with a shout-out to the first thing on my list of must-haves from my past…Crystal Pepsi…

Paleontology 101: Crystal Pepsi

Ah Crystal Clear Pepsi, a fine institution of my youth. This stuff came out in roughly 1992 and was pimped as tasting like regular Pepsi but without the annoyance of opacity. Granted, I don’t remember being uneasy with beverages I couldn’t see through, but that could just be my memory failing me again. Given my love for this stuff, I must have been all-kinds of scared shitless by dark colas in the early ‘90s. Perhaps my parents used one of those ‘Men in Black’ memory-erasers on me or something. Who knows…moving on.

The jury is still out as to whether or not it actually tasted like Pepsi. I vaguely remember it tasting like Pepsi, but the reviews on various internet message boards are pretty varied. Some people refer to it as tasting like “liquid death,” “a combo of Alka Seltzer and Pixie Stix,” and “flat, gross 7-Up.” Whether my memory serves me correctly or if it’s just the sugary-coating of nostalgia, I don’t really know.

What I do know is that for the year or so this stuff was on the market it was pretty much the only soda-pop I was willing to drink. Luckily, most stores had realized that Crystal Pepsi was a big flop about two months in and began slashing prices just to get it off the shelves. Ironically enough that worked out well for me, because my Mama loaded up on the stuff and I spent the entire summer slurping down liter-after-liter and can-after-can of this colorless wonder.

When it finally disappeared altogether (and/or following the aforementioned ‘Men in Black’ mind-erasing) I seemingly moved on—rather flawlessly—to Wild Cherry Pepsi and eventually good ole Coca-Cola which remains my sweet-sweet ambrosia to this day.

Apparently I wasn’t the only one who was able to easily transition to life post-Crystal Pepsi; to this day the folks at Pepsi pretend that Crystal Pepsi never happened. This delicious concoction doesn’t appear in the company’s ‘Pepsi Legacy’ which chronicles the 100 years of Pepsi and it is also nowhere to be found on Pepsi’s corporate page that details all of the company’s major promotions on a year-by-year basis.

Long story short, Crystal Pepsi was awesome…at least in the nine-year old version of my memory. And although my life didn’t end along with the production of Crystal Pepsi, I can only assume that deep down some part of my soul is still deeply in mourning…I mean seriously, it’s not like people just dream about things at random. Right?!

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