Diet Coke Plus 06.11.2007

Sometimes I like to think that the inner sanctums of the Coca Cola company are like the commercials for Fruit Gushers — diabolically insane mad scientists combining flavors not meant for Man, and gleefully feeding test samples to horrified assistants.

It’s really the only way I can explain the creation of Diet Coke Plus.

Diet Coke Plus bills itself as “Diet Coke with Vitamins and Minerals”, with the ‘Vitamins and Minerals” part in the sort of slightly larger font that implies they want to draw attention to it but are unsure as to as well it will be received. It’s like the subtle but still vibrantly colored Green Line logo used by Saturn; the kind of thing that wants to say yeah, look, this car is green, but not too loudly because then people might realize they’re paying $4000 for an oversized Duracell and barely enough power to turn four wheels. Sure, it gets great mileage and lasts as long on one tank as that Energizer bunny, but it also goes at about the same speed.

According to the ingredients list, there’s 25% daily intake of Vitamins B6, B12 and magnesium and Zinc. There’s also apparently zero calories.

What this means in practical terms is that clueless people like me will drink four cans and think “ha! Now I have 100% of my daily intake for vitamins!” and then proceed to drink three more cans because everybody knows the more vitamins the better.

The taste is only slightly different from Diet Coke — which is to say that the taste is only slightly different than, as Gordon Ramsey so eloquently puts it, gnat’s piss. There’s a slight edge to the bubbling liquid imparts by the vitamins and minerals. Not a good edge. But not a particularly bad edge either. Just something to remind you that yes, while you aren’t hating yourself and drinking Diet Coke, you’re stilling self-loathing and drinking something slightly more healthy called Diet Coke Plus.

It’s the kind of “yes, but it’s healthy!” feeling that exists when you see someone munching on four double cheeseburgers with large fries and drinking Diet Coke.

The only comforting thought is that while it may be gnat’s piss, it’s still not as bad as Sierra Mist. Sierra Mist is more like gnat’s piss that’s been sitting in a tepid pool on a hot day with a car parked over it slowly dripping oil and brake fluid and all sorts of nasty toxins that when put together, miraculously combine to form something so amazingly tasteless that it’s like drinking air.

Well, the air stuck between a landfill and a lemonade factory, anyway.