A mostly true story about the Coca-Cola Museum

by Josh Spilker

You always preferred decaf but I never let  you make it. You drank regular at 4 in the afternoon, the latest you could have caffeine. More caffeine would make you stay up at night, you told me. I don't know. I drink caffeine at all times of the day. I never stay up at night.

That folk band on the stereo. I preferred the hardcore band. You showed me the vinyl album cover of the hardcore band.
“What's this?” you asked. The album had a drawing of a statue with a rainbow-colored stripe.
“It's hardcore. You won't like it.”
You put on two more folk albums, one distorted noise album and one alt-country album. The needle scratched the one alt-country album.

We would both have like anti-folk. That anti-folk was so sad. We would have settled on anti-folk if I was a bigger fan. In my mind, we would both be fans of anti-folk but we never invested the time much less the money, much less the social connections to find someone who had anti-folk albums and then remembered to burn us a copy. Our laziness was too lazy to make itself known.

The records stopped. We sat still.

At work I recommended someone go to the Coca-Cola Museum in Atlanta. I told you about recommending it to someone.
“I always wanted to go back there,” I said.
“You did? You never told me,” you said.
“I thought my desire was implicit, like my love for you. I don't have to tell you I always love you. I don't have to tell you that I always wanted to go back to the Coca-Cola Museum.”

You put on chapstick and then handed the chapstick to me. We kissed through chapstick. The chapstick kissed us. We smacked of a sour taste.

“Didn't you go to the Coca Cola museum when you were a kid?” you asked.
“I did but I still want to go back. It's new now. Remember the fountain that shot a drink halfway across the room? They might have a new fountain.”

“Yes, but you know, that didn't actually shoot it into your cup.”
“It didn't?”
“No,” you said. “It was an illusion. Your cup was filled with a tank that sat right over your cup. It was really just a regular soda fountain, with a stage show.”
“It was just regular?”
“You know that section of Coca-Cola ads? Where they sing about world peace?”
“I'd like to teach the world to sing...,” you started.
“I”d like to buy the world a Coke to keep it company,” I finished. “Does that song make you cry? It makes me cry sometimes.”
“No. I don't let corporations control my emotions,” you said.
“So you don't want to go back to the Coca Cola Museum?” I asked.
“No never,” you said. “I never want to go back there again, ever.”
 “Does that mean you don't love me?” I said.
“We don't like the same music or caffeinated products,” you said.