June 24 2007
By Mike Sorohan
New Orleans will never be considered fully recovered until it has places that sell Diet Mountain Dew.
I woke up this morning (da-DAH-da-dum) with a simple goal before the day’s activities began: breakfast and a Diet Mountain Dew, my caffeinated beverage of choice. My hotel, the Hilton Gardens (with the lobby on the 11th floor) is a Coke hotel. Not a problem.
(If you’re a frequent traveler, you know that there are Coke hotels and Pepsi hotels, and never the twain shall meet. So if you’re in a Hilton, for example, you can get a Diet Coke, but not a Diet Mountain Dew. If you’re in a Marriott, you can get a Diet Mountain Dew, but not a Diet Coke.)
To solve this issue, I simply walked into a Walgreen’s on Canal Street, which sells both. Or so I thought. I found my box of Special K cereal, my box of Special K Breakfast bars, then went to the pop aisle.
(NED INTERRUPTS: Mike, did you just say “pop?”
MIKE: Yes, Ned. “Pop.”
NED: Don’t you mean “soda?”
MIKE: Some would call it that, yes. I’m from the Midwest. We call it “pop.”
NED: And am I to believe that you were, for breakfast, going to have a bowl of dry cereal, a breakfast bar, and a Diet Mountain Dew?”
NED: What, you couldn’t afford milk?)
ANYWAY…in the pop aisle (NED: [Chortle]) I found both Coke and Pepsi products…three rows of regular Mountain Dew…but no Diet Mountain Dew.
No problem. I left the Walgreens and went over to a nearby hotel. Coke hotel. Went over to the Marriott. Coke hotel. Went to the Sheraton. Coke hotel. At the gift shop at the Sheraton, I politely inquired if the clerk knew where anyone could find a Diet Mountain Dew.
CLERK: “Diet Mountain Dew? What’s that?”
OTHER CLERK: “Never seen that before.”
Defeated, I bought a Diet Coke. It’s just not the same…