atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#1942: Someone needs to go back to school

Cops who want to shoot law-abiding citizens for exercising their constitutional rights should not be cops.

What does this anus think about people who protest against the police, exercising their first amendment rights? Should those people be laid out face-down, too?

Police officers should know better.

* * *

We're told that China is going to overtake everyone in the world by 2040, but not everyone agrees.

China's boom is being fueled by deficit spending. Can it go on like this ad infinitum?

* * *

Okay, I'm in a fisking mood. First the whole letter; then the fisking. Quote in bold, translation in italics, my wisecracks in regular.
Thank you for taking the time to contact us here at Pepsi-Cola Company regarding PepsiOne.

Pepsi One is a blend of Splenda (also known as Sucralose) and Acesulfame Potassium. PepsiOne is one of our popular brands and in response to the overwhelming consumer request for a beverage made with Splenda, PepsiOne continues to deliver Great Cola Taste with only One Calorie. In consumer focus groups, this new formula was preferred.

I hope you find this information helpful. If I can be of further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Thanks again for contacting us. Wishing the very best!
Pepsi One is a blend of Splenda (also known as Sucralose) and Acesulfame Potassium. Just in case you can't understand the writing on the label. Pepsi One is not a "blend". It is sweetened with "a blend". This person probably got all A's in English Composition, too. *sigh*

PepsiOne is one of our popular brands and in response to the overwhelming consumer request for a beverage made with Splenda, PepsiOne continues to deliver Great Cola Taste with only One Calorie. You are obviously defective, becaue everyone else likes it. I don't care how popular the damn thing is and if I wanted to read ad copy, I'd just look at your web site.

In consumer focus groups, this new formula was preferred. Everyone else likes it; therefore you are the moron. This also told me nothing useful.

I hope you find this information helpful. If I can be of further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me. Coupled with the "noreply" e-mail address, this means "shut up and leave us alone."

Okay, I'm being extra-cynical.

The "focus group" bit is what annoyed me the most about this email, though. Of course the formula which is in production did well with focus groups. No one is going to spend millions of dollars bringing a soft drink to market without checking to see if anyone wants to drink it! ("New Coke" excepted.)

The problem is with the composition of the focus groups. Who did PepsiCo ask to try this stuff? I'll tell you who PepsiCo got for their focus groups: people who wanted diet Pepsi. I should say, "people who are likely to drink diet soft drinks" and "people who normally purchase diet soft drinks".

Naturally, people who like diet soft drinks are going to prefer the formula which tastes most like a diet soft drink. They're not going to like the one which tastes just like the sugared version. Why would they? They're used to the flat taste of aspartame and sachharine; once you get in the habit of drinking that stuff, sugar tastes "too sweet".

And since Splenda is basically sugar, a diet Pepsi formula sweetened with Splenda to taste like regular Pepsi won't focus-group well among drinkers of diet soft drinks. It would do well among the people, like me, who prefer the taste of the regular stuff but don't want all the sugar.

Maybe I'm taking the wrong tack on this. What I should do is suggest they make a version of Mountain Dew which is sweetened with Splenda and which tastes just like regular Mountain Dew. Call it "Mountain Dew Unleaded" so it evokes images of high-octane fuel. I could drink that.


* * *

Anyway I've been slogging through the 6-pack of Pepsi One and I keep changing my mind: keep at it, don't keep at it--I don't know. I would like to cut back on my sugar intake, and while this stuff isn't optimum it does taste better than diet Pepsi.

The real problem is what happens every time I try this. This isn't the first time I've tried to make a switch to diet; and every time I do, after a few days I start suffering continuous hypoglycemia.

Like right now: I woke up, had a gyro (left over from last night's dinner) and a bottle of Pepsi One. Here I sit not two hours later and I'm feeling fuzzy and woozy, feeling all the effects of imminent hypoglycemia.

Here's how chronic hypoglycemia works: the typical sufferer of it (say, me) overreacts to a spike in blood glucose. If I get up in the morning and eat a candy bar, and nothing else, my blood sugar rises to a typical post-prandial level. The pancreas overreacts to the high blood sugar and produces too much insulin. My blood glucose drops precipitously; I sweat and shake and get really irritable. If I don't eat something PDQ I start to see spots. Further along this road lay a hypglycemic coma.

It's not diabetes: my blood sugar doesn't go higher than the normal range. It does, however, frequently drop below it unless I'm careful about my sugar intake. how the hell can I drink sugared soda, you ask? Good question. For the most part I am careful about food intake, taking care to balance the sugar input with protein and fat. And I have almost no other sweets in my diet.

Everything I know about chronic hypoglycemia--and I know a lot--says that I should not feel this lousy 2 hours after a meal, particularly when I've had no sugar. And yet I do.

The only conclusion I can come to is that my body expects there to be sugar, and produces too much insulin...and I am therefore in fact suffering from withdrawal. Argh.

But the last couple times I tried this, I had a job and had to be 100% on; right now I'm unemployed. It might be a good idea for me to keep at it this time, to see if I can push past the unpleasantness.

The last couple times, I switched to diet Sprite, because it was the only diet soda I could find that even approximated its non-diet flavor. I figured--hoped--that the cessation of sugar and caffiene was the problem, and that by avoiding just the sugar I could make the switch without suffering unduly.

The answer is no. Of course.

WTF, am I going to have to check into the Betty Ford clinic or something? The probelm is, hypoglycemia is bad for you. It's just as bad as diabetes; it's not as well-understood. Further compounding the problem is that many doctors don't believe chronic hypoglycemia is real. There is no treatment, there are no drugs; all you can do for it is watch your diet.

If my present (pre-Pepsi One) diet works, perhaps I shouldn't mess with it. Argh etc.

* * *

Obama versus Palin, "crib notes".

* * *

"I'm pretty sure you're using US law to smuggle some kind of contraband through our checkpoint." (At 19:30-ish in the video.)

The officer's basis for this suspicion?

The driver's refusal to allow an illegal search of his car.

This kind of thing is an example of federal agents skirting the Constitution of the United States. The statement I use as link text goes on, "...and until we prove that you're not...."

Whatever happened to presumption of innocence?

...I couldn't do this kind of thing, as much as I'd like to; I'm too excitable: I'd end up getting to angry and I'd be arrested because I said something stupid. My hat's off to these people who can, because this kind of stuff really makes me angry.

It reminds me of the time I got stopped by a sobriety checkpoint. I was cited for driving on an expired license plate and with no front plate. The former was an oversight; the latter was laziness.

I had to give up a day of work and go to court, only to be told that since I'd fixed them, the charges were dropped. I don't mind that outcome; but WTF, why waste all the effort? Why couldn't the cop have just given me a warning and saved all that useless paperwork? And the only reason I was cited was because they stopped me for a possibly extra-Constitutional checkpoint.


* * *

...I'm still feeling crappy. I hate this.

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