Coke Spies

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It’s known to all of my close friends and family that I am a Coca-Cola addict (from here on out, I claim the right to use “Coke” without the obvious drug joke! Get your laughs out now!) I frequently tell people that quite literally owe the delicious soda my life. You see, my parents both worked for and met at the Coke Company Headquarters in Atlanta, GA (where I was born and raised). It was only recently that I discovered what exactly they did at the company, and boy was it an amazing story!

Immediately after graduating college, my parents, both free of any real commitment, moved to Atlanta to work at Coke. However, they weren’t in the city for long. Coca-Cola was looking to investigate several establishments across the U.S. for misuse of the brand name. If someone were to ask for a Coke at a restaurant, but they were served another cola product, that’s illegal! My parents were given a company car and drove all over America to flesh out these investigations. COKE SPIES!

Here’s a typical day-in-the-life of a Coke Spy: they would arrive at a bar or restaurant, usually with a newspaper in tow, and immediately ordered a coke. Then, using the newspaper as a shield, they poured some of the coke into a plastic bag and put it away. They would usually linger at the establishment for a bit, then head back to their hotel. There they would have test tubes at the ready for the cola samples. After pouring the Coke into the tubes, they would mail it back to headquarters. If the results came back negative (not Coke), then they would have to go back to the establishment with a corporate representative and tell them that they were being sued by the Coke Company unless they took immediate action.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is the reason why waiters and waitresses have to say “Is Pepsi okay?”.

Is that not an amazing story? For 50 weeks of the year, my parents would roam the country, expenses paid, and tasted Coke for a living. This is essentially my dream job. If it were still available, I would do it in a millisecond. Wouldn’t you?

Sandwich Mondays

A recent highlight of my Mondays (even though I don’t work on Mondays right now, so I can’t complain) is NPR’s “Sandwich Monday”. It’s from the hilarious people who bring you “Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me”, and the posts are no less funny than the radio show. By the way, if you’ve never listened to “Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me”, you should get on that right away. It’s a news quiz show that’s recorded live right here in Chicago, but with a comedic twist. They have quirky guest contestants, often macro and micro celebrities. You’ll laugh and you’ll learn something. I’m a recent convert and I can’t believe I never listened before!

Anyways, since the show is mainly stationed in Chicago, a lot of these sandwiches can be found around town, which I think is pretty cool. I always laugh out loud (I can’t bear to type LOL, sry ppl)! My favorite post so far is about something called gravy bread, pictured in all of its soggy glory above. Check it out and have a chuckle.

Here’s the official page with all Sandwich Monday posts and where you can find “Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me” podcasts.

Photo from NPR.