Friday, June 1, 2012

Out of my cold, clammy hands!

Drawing this made me thirsty.
I've been talking about the NYC soda ban a lot today, and by "a lot" I mean I've mentioned it twice, which is a substantial commitment for me. Not sure how I feel. On one hand, soda is bad and we, the people, should be drinking less. On the other hand, freedom is good, and taking away my right to a tub of Mountain Dew impinges on my freedom to rot my teeth and enjoy heart palpitations. What's a gal to do?

At first, I was fairly adamant that this was a bad idea and bad precedent. Then I remembered when NYC banned transfats, which seemed to result in crackers with poor structural integrity, but eventually we all adjusted. What's that you say? The NYC ban did not cause the change in my beloved Ritz? Sure, not directly, but the largest metropolitan area in the U.S. is probably going to have some national influence in the same way Texas determines whether our children learn that on the 7th day God created capitalism. Clearly this marks the end of the Big Gulp as a bulwark of society, but the country hasn't been saved from a life of "prying boards" and motorized scooters just yet.

I don't think the ban will result in healthier eating habits any more than the transfats ban turned our arteries into platelet Autobahns. Soda isn't going to miraculously become healthy just because we buy it in smaller cups, particularly because we are allowed to buy two if our addiction thirst warrants it. Of course, if we have two sodas in our hands, we won't be able to carry our donuts on Donut Day. You win this round, Bloomberg!

Donut or not, soon we will all get used to this heinous affront to our liberty because deep down we know that, like eating Oreo's fried in lard or smoking just about anything, drinking 48 oz of soda is not really a necessity of life. There are plenty of wonderfully fun and enjoyable activities that we aren't allowed to do, like driving while nude. No sense in starting a revolution when we could all see The Avengers for the fourth time.

That's not to say the ban will result in improved health outcomes. Ever ingenious with regards to our own self-destruction, people will merely replace the calories with other food or drink. Nature craves homeostasis. Playing Whac-A-Mole with people's diets isn't going to cure the obesity problem as long as people think it is culturally appropriate to eat pizza made out of something called "cheesy bites" and then watch 6 straight hours of Law & Order: SVU.

So don't waste too much time worrying about how we are sliding closer to a fascist dictatorship. If we keep eating the way we do, none of us will live to see the eventual downfall anyway.

For those of you inclined to read serious journalism, here is a legitimate article by John S. Wilson that argues the ban will fail.



  1. Funny take on a niggling subject. It just seems like a ridiculous waste of time to spend the legislative hours to put a ban on the SIZE of the beverage when the beverage is still freely available. Maybe it is really an IQ test since the thrifty and smart consumer will plunk down the $0.99 for a 2 liter bottle. I guess the only problem with that is they have to stand up from their motorized scooters to reach the bottles on the top shelf.

    On second thought, forget everything I said, you win Bloomberg. Well, played. Ellen

    1. Apparently grocery stores and bodegas are exempt, so basically you can still amass an "End Times" arsenal of Dr. Pepper 2 liter bottles in your own home. I bet in NYC you could get them delivered, which is the fast track to the TLC special "I can't leave my house."

  2. Ban soda? Holy CRAP! NOT cool...I would die!

  3. OH! So that's why my crackers all taste funny now... Damn you, Bloomberg! *shakes fist*


I love comments. They make me feel like I'm not talking to myself. I try to reply to all of them, eventually.