PepsiCo thought it would be a really keen idea to make Diet Mountain Dew taste all hyper-sweet and sports-drinky, so they changed the formula early this year. I was a serious, longtime Diet Mountain Dew consumer, so I put up a protest site. Jeremy at afterglide had one too. He had also started a petition a couple of weeks earlier that eventually accumulated 2,000 signatures. We were partners, in more or less daily contact, with plans to write a book after we became two kids from BFE who turned the gigantic international conglomerate around.
Didn’t work out that way. Oh, some cool stuff happened. We were each interviewed by a reporter with The Wall Street Journal. There were radio interviews, local news stories, and neat stuff like that. Ultimately, I emailed at some length with John Sicher, the editor of Beverage Digest. He shared some rough sales data with me that unambiguously demonstrated that PepsiCo had done the right thing reformulating Diet Mountain Dew.
We were prepared for anything except a sustained sales increase, which was unassailable.
It’s been strange since then. I got off caffeine completely, then trickled back on. Now I’m up and down day to day, with some combination of Diet Coke, Diet Dr Pepper, and Diet Sun-drop, with an occasional Diet Sunkist when I stop at a convenience store (which is no longer very often since I quit smoking). And, you know, there is the odd speedball or two on the weekends. Of course there isn’t.
I suppose I’ll pull the site down soon. It’s down to about 20 unique visitors a day, and the war was lost months ago (because too many of you like this nasty swill they’re calling Diet Mountain Dew now). It was a fine creative outlet for a few months there, and I got visitors from all 50 states and 60 countries. I’m still proud of a lot of the writing–I was REALLY PISSED, and strong emotion productively stimulates my right brain–so I’ll keep it available at my page somewhere.