Grabbing Bawls

Things have been a little busy for the past few days, and though I have quite a few columns in the works, I thought I would post a classic for your reading pleasure today. This was written in July 2006. I was at a job where I delivered bread at 2 in the morning and it was composed only about a month after my first son was born. So, I ask you to have pity for my situation. Enjoy and check back for a new entry soon.

Drastic times call for drastic measures. I don't know who it was that ever said that, but we must share some sort of kinship borne of a surplus of those drastic times. These words came into my head as I stood in front of the beverage section at the local grocery store and tried to make my choice of over 67 different kinds of energy drinks. The 67 is an actual number, not one of my usual gross exaggerations. I looked ahead of me at the wide array of 67 ways to get jacked up in a hurry. I chose Bawls.

I don't know why I chose Bawls. Perhaps it was the fact that it seemed to be the least covert with its sexual undertones. The various and sundry labels of its peers read like a veritable letter to Penthouse Forum: Full Throttle, Max Velocity, Von Dutch, Blox, MDX, Vault. "I never thought I would tell anyone this, but one day, my girlfriend came over, completely unexpected, and we had Socko." Bawls, in its simple blue glass bottle with a delicate ribbed design (for my drinking pleasure, of course) was today's phallus of choice. After getting very little to no sleep the previous night and having the added stress of controlling what is being referred to as a mouse "epidemic" in our house, I knew what I needed for this rough morning at work was Bawls.

After the embarrassment of having to buy my Bawls at the checkout counter, I took it back to my work truck. Just before opening it, I wondered to myself just what exactly Bawls would taste like. It claims to be a beverage of guarana, a fruit, vegetable, herb, or animal that is yet to be discovered by the general populous. As I turned the Bawls over in my hand, the back label mentioned something about how it could potentially kill me. Any beverage that has to have a warning label on it is the exact beverage that I need at 4 in the morning.

The surge in popularity of energy drinks over the past few years has been less staggering as it has been frighteningly alert and jittery. Many of these products advertise their comparison to coffee, as per the caffeine level. I find it quite brazen that a beverage that costs $2.79 a can and tastes like the fermented urine of a spider monkey would advertise against a beverage that costs a nickel and tastes decidedly less like animal waste. Why would people just not drink coffee. Here in Utah, a large percentage of the population adhere to the Word of Wisdom, issued by a prophet, which expressly prohibits drinking coffee. These adherents, however, not finding the word Bawls anywhere in the list of don'ts are a prime audience for this caffeinated pleasure. And I am among their ranks.

I heard the gentle fizzing sound rising up from my Bawls as I took the first sip. Essentially, what I got was soda water with a double shot of caffeine and a hint of what can safely be assumed is pineapple, not guarana (indigenous Brazilian for "Sucka!"). But it seemed exotic enough and did the trick, allowing me to stay awake through the rest of my hellish work day. I took the Bawls from my mouth and thought about the Betel nuts I had read about in National Geographic a few weeks earlier. The Betel nut is a popularly vended item in the streets of Thailand and a favorite amongst businessmen and students. The fleshy inside of these nuts contains a strong stimulant and its users love the long-lasting energizing effects. I honestly felt excited about this wonderful, natural product and wondered how I could get my hands on a bushel or two. Reading on, I found that they were highly carcinogenic, ten times worse then nicotine. They are one of the most highly addictive products known and their trademark side-effect is to increase dramatically the discharge of the users saliva and stain the issuing flow a bright red color. Disturbing, yes, and understandably somewhat undesirable. But how could we figure out how to get the nut into some type of beverage and sell it here in the states. There would have to be a great demand for it. We could place it on the shelf directly between the Jolt and the Volt. Maybe we could call it Pelvic Thrust.

Actually, no, I've got it. We just call it "Nuts."


Brian R said...

Hysterical. Google 'power thirst' sometime and watch the videos.