Here is a post from the fizzy drinks review blog I just started.
Whoop, whoop! It’s time for a Faygo shower, internets, so if you’re not down with the clown, prepare to be axe-murdered or whatever.
This cola, which goes so far in looking ‘classic’ as to actually come close to being ‘classy’, is manufactured by the Faygo company of Detroit, Michigan, established in 1907. They have about 50 flavours (and another 50 flavours under subsidiary brand names), so I’m not sure how much context I should be giving right now if I need to do more posts in the future, but I’ll give a basic outline of why Faygo seems important or interesting to me.
Juggalos drink Faygo. This is where I heard of it initially. The Insane Clown Posse are from Detroit, and Faygo is a fixture in Detroit. They’ve made it a thing for all their fans now, though. They pour it on juggalettes’ breasts, and pour it over their heads, and get sprayed with it by juggalo rappers while they’re on-stage.
It’s cheap in Detroit, I gather from a line by (prominent Detroit rapper) Eminem on TI’s That’s All She Wrote: “She thinks I’m a high roller/But I won’t buy her soda/Unless it’s Rock and Rye cola/Faygo’s cheaper.” That doesn’t exactly bode well for a man ostensibly reviewing bespoke cola, but Guinness is cheap in Ireland and Carlsberg is cheap in Denmark, so it doesn’t necessarily flout reason that an otherwise ‘premium’ drink would be cheap in its hometown.
Now, there are a million things I could say about this cola before I open it, just based on what we know so far. It’s not only from Detroit, a city in deep decline from its industrial heyday, but it’s actually FROM the industrial heyday. Ford opened in Detroit in 1903. Faygo opened in 1907. People were drinking it while they built America’s cars, and while they had the race riots, all the way up until the city itself went to shit and they demolished all the abandoned houses in a weirdly counterproductive attempt at stemming dereliction, squatting and attendant vice.
This is, I suppose I’m trying to say, an especially historic cola, even if it’s cheaper than the mainstream brands.
It’s not really cola-coloured. It’s so red that you’re probably safer just calling it red, though it’s relatively murky to look through unless you hold it right up to the light.
There’s barely any fizz when you crack the lid, and it smells like a pure cream soda. It is - sorry if I forgot to mention this in my enthusiasm for Detroit - billed as an “artificially flavoured cream cola”, but smell-wise, it’s further than that.
The pour brings a decent amount of fine carbonation, like a fancy mineral water rather than a bottle of Fanta, and it’s even more ruby red in the glass. It looks good though, so I proceed.
It’s very good, more a cherry-flavoured cream soda than a cola, to my taste, but nonetheless. It’s sweet in the right way, with the cane sugar-cherry-cream combination turning out, unsurprisingly, delicious, and while it doesn’t exactly pack too much punch, it’s pleasant the whole way through without the cream finish feeling like it hangs around too long.
Gonna just pause that entire last passage.
It’s very drinkable the whole way through and would be worth moving to your workhorse soda pile if you could get enough of it but - and this is an issue to anyone worried about the inevitable onset of diabetes - it’s got 49g of sugar per 12 fl oz bottle, about 12g more than Coke ounce for ounce. That’s a whole lot of sugar. I had water this morning to pave the way for this afternoon tasting, but if I hadn’t, I’d probably be shaking.
I’d also imagine that if you poured this over yourself as part of some form of semi-ritualised juggalo reverie, you’d be sticky as fuck. I wouldn’t recommend it to outsiders, although it’s starting to feel like being a non-juggalo going to the Gathering of the Juggalos and realising it’s just a festival with people having fun in comfort is the new Slipping Over To Ahmedabad For Holi Because It Is So Colourful. Drink the drink instead
Perceive this beaver eat its own genitals.
Perceive this as a beaver.
This is a beaver.
What I just posted there was a professional column I wrote in the frankly ridiculous hope that the magazine I write for would think it’s okay to associate the brand with professional wrestling.
Ergo, it’s written in the way I write when I feel there’s a possibility my cousin or someone might read it, rather than with social network contempt.
Hire me to write wrestling.
It was an uncanny coincidence, which isn’t surprising given the fact that the pair made a living off doing uncanny things for years. The Undertaker returned to Raw on Monday after an eleven-month absence to set up his twenty-first Wrestlemania match. The next day, Paul Bearer died.
Death, being what it is, is a very difficult thing to play with in the diluted-kayfabe world that modern wrestling inhabits, but without wanting to seem off-colour, there is an incredibly obvious opportunity here for The Undertaker and for WWE. The WWE will pay tribute to Paul Bearer, either in the way the Bleacher Report suggests or, more likely, with a graphic and some silence, but somehow it seems that a lifelong wrestling guy, being a wrestling guy, would be less disrespected than you might think by going deeper with this in storyline.
It’s 2013 and Paul Bearer hasn’t been on WWE television since 2002, but it’s fair to surmise that if The Undertaker is still popular for any reason other than the fact that he shows up once a year and is treated with heavy reference, it’s because the crowd – and especially the Wrestlemania crowd, consisting of more fairweathers and once-a-years – is familiar with him going back to the Attitude Era and beyond. The reaction he gets is a heady mix of Ray Lewis-style veteran reverence underpinned by his presentation, basic appreciation of the comic book-style character, and warm, fuzzy memories.
It’s the last bit that’s important here. Any tribute to Paul Bearer is necessarily tied to the reverence of the Undertaker, because they were together for so long. People who have even a vague knowledge of the character of the Undertaker will know that he is the ‘dead man’, and that Paul Bearer has something to do with that.
Consider this: back before he was a once-a-year performer, before he would do part-time runs, before the American Bad Ass character flip, before even the Undertaker that threw Mankind off the cell in one of the defining moments of the Attitude Era, there was an Undertaker that was, literally, if we’re to buy fully into what was then a much more active version of kayfabe, undead.
Back in the early 90, as he silently performed carpentry, his genuinely creepy, strange-voiced, corpse-like manager Bearer would tell the story. “My Undertaker,” Bearer would call the wrestler, or even “my undertaker” with a small U – there’s an ambiguity there in verbal delivery obviously. Undertaker would wrestle matches in the ring and, back when matches in the ring told stories, we would learn that, as he flagged and faded, Bearer could hold up his mysterious urn and bring the Undertaker back to full strength.
“Yeeeeeeeeeeeees!” Bearer would squeal. “The powwwwwer of the uuuuurrrrrrrn.” It was weird, but it was good. This wasn’t Hogan-style hulking, it was something a little more solid and better. Undertaker wasn’t superhuman – he was *inhuman*. And he was controlled, it was clear, by the urn.
Paul Bearer held the urn, and the urn controlled the Undertaker. Because he was undead.
Now, Paul Bearer disappeared from television, then came back, then disappeared again. But in the broad-strokes world of kayfabe, he was always somewhere. Just as we’re supposed to believe the characters we see on-screen live as those characters when they’re off-screen – a concept related to the idea that things, such as showering, pissing and buying milk, happen in serial dramas while we’re not watching – we find it fair to believe that Paul Bearer, not just Bill Moody who played him, was sitting somewhere at home. Maybe in Death Valley, [No State Specified]. He held the urn and the urn kept the Undertaker going. His sorcery or necromancy or whatever was still valid.
But now Bill Moody is dead, so Paul Bearer is dead. No one holds the urn. The Undertaker might have come into possession of his own urn, as Bleacher Report suggests as its form of tribute, but if it was that simple, why didn’t he just take it from Paul Bearer in 1993?
A grim serendipity has led to a situation in which Paul Bearer died in the same week Undertaker came back for what could easily turn out to be his last-ever match, given his age and physical condition. There will never be an opportunity this perfect. The WWE has an opportunity to wrap up a piece of kayfabe it introduced more than two decades ago. It will never happen again, or not as well as this, because kayfabe means something different now, and Undertaker was born of an era where wrestling could be more than it can be now.
Paul Bearer is dead. The power of the urn is broken. CM Punk should break the streak. The Undertaker should lose at Wrestlemania and disappear, as a character at least, forever.
Viking castle in Exeter.
This lad is the fucking king. Look at that. Standing on a bull-drawn carriage of bones, rolling over the righteous.