Today at lunch I had a barbecue sandwich that was falling off the bun. After thinking that any sandwich that is that hard to put down has to be good I started to recall that as a kid we invented our own methods for evaluation. It was a good day if we got to build something or destroy something. If we could dig a hole and fill it in without our parents noticing it was a great day. We called the movie rating schedule G for Great, PG for Pretty Good, and R for Rotten (there was no PG-13 until I was 13). It wasn't the language or the violence that determined it for us. It was whether it was worth watching. My most vivid rating scheme though was for soft drinks.
Growing up in the South, it was always a Coke. "Do you want a Coke?" was a question that could be answered in many ways, such as, "Sure, I'll take a Coke," or "Sure, I'll take a Dr. Pepper," or "Sure, I'll take a Pepsi." It was a question that if answered "Sure," it would elicit a follow-up question, "What kind?" This was back when not only could you get 1 liter glass bottles, but the 2 liter plastic ones had an extra black piece on the bottom for stability. It also masked whether there was enough in the bottom for one more glass, hence we called it the bevamirage.
Our system to determine the pecking order of carbonated beverages was how soon you burped after drinking. We boasted that we could drink an entire Pepsi without burping, had to burp immediately after a Coke (of course this was a Coca Cola, not a Coca Cola Classic), in 1985 we were able to drink a Coke (New Coke) without burping. A Dr. Pepper would get a belch before the final belt, but a Barq's Root Beer required multiple burps at the half-way point and just before the end. Can you imagine which our favorites were?
It was years before we figured out why this was. Well, to be honest, no one cared but me, but I figured out that it had to do with how much we anticipated the drink. We were so excited to have a Barq's that we gulped it quickly. The Pepsis were better than Kool-Aid but only because they were carbonated. The faster we drank them, the more air we got into our stomachs.
So here's the question for you, what do you participate in or partake of now that causes you to belch? What do you have to have so bad that you can't wait for it to be digested normally? Is it getting home from work, going in to work, heading to church, or beating the Methodists to the restaurant after church? When you can answer that, ask yourself this one, why?
I burped halfway through my Barq's in a glass bottle last night after a five-hour car ride. It was ice-cold. After all these years it still brings pleasure. What else in our lives do we consume as voraciously as we did as kids?