Wednesday, October 18, 2006

i'd like to buy the world a coke, but keep the bottle cap for me

coke reward

As penance for my Coke Zero consumption, I have started making myself enter the codes for the MyCokeRewards program. Estimates of the value of each bottlecap vary, but suffice it to say that few models of the value of my time would indicate that it is worthwhile for me to be entering them, especially given (1) that I'm not even sure which of the available rewards I would want and (2) that I just throw the bottles themselves in a recycling bin, even though I could be earning a nickel a pop (ha! midwestern pun!) by bagging and returning them here in Massachusetts. Anyway, at the high end of the rewards scale are things like the "Train Like An Olympian" above, which is available for 25000 points. I drink 20 ounce bottles, whose caps are worth 3 points each. So one needs 8334 of these caps in order to be able to train like an Olympian. Luckily I'm drinking Coke Zero with all its eventually-will-be-revealed-as-toxic aspartame* goodness, as if I were drinking regular Coke each 20 ounce bottle would be 250 calories. So training like an Olympian would require pre-training by consuming 2,083,500 calories of Coca-Cola, which, in the context of an otherwise weight-neutral lifestyle, implies a gain of approximately 595 pounds.

I'm not somebody who normally saves and uses frequent purchaser cards or anything like that, so it's completely mysterious why I have been entering these Coke Rewards codes about which it's unclear if and when I would ever cash them in for anything. I think the absurdity of it is part of what propels me forward, which I think says something about me, although I'm not exactly sure what but suspect it's not flattering.

* BTW, I've always presume it's pronounced AZ-per-tame, but some people I know say uh-SPAR-tuh-may with confident panache. Anyone know which it is?


dorotha said...

i try not to say aspartame precisely because i can't figure out which camp is right.

how many points do you have? i can look for awesome rewards for you.

rps said...

The toxicologists who study it say "AS-per-tame."

I've now set aside a little treasure trove of diet coke bottle tops for you.

Anonymous said...

AS-par-tame or as-PAR-tame (no accent aigu, tame is one syllable) are both used in the industry without incurring ridicule, but emphasis on the first syllable is more common.

Anonymous said...

no need to go all greek in the pronunciation (*"asPERtamee", 4 syllables). the word is not of greek origin.

the oxford english dictionary only accepts primary stress on the second syllable (something like "aSPERtame"), but merriam-webster is a bit more generous and accepts both "ASpertame" and "aSPERtame".

merriam webster pronunciation

Anonymous said...

looks like i messed up the html code. here's the URL:

Hazy Dave said...

Wow, I sure like the image of adding all those calories to my not exactly weight neutral diet and showing up at the U.S. Olympic Training Center weighing something like 795 pounds. "C'mon, lift me up to those still rings, you pansy!" I think I'll go practice saying "uh-SPAR-tuh-may" with "confident panache", now.