As I write this post, the A/C is going non-stop on this first 90 plus degree day. It was already 75 degrees this morning when I left on a walk, albeit a short one.
I was happy to see the severe weather didn’t materialize and burst the carbonated bubbles of everyone gathered down at the Detroit Historical Museum to break a record of the most people drinking pop at one time. It wasn’t just any old pop either, but Vernors, that gingery-tasting cream soda that celebrates its 150th anniversary today.
Vernors was always the favorite ingredient for Boston Coolers, and when you left it out in a glass and it got “flat”, it was a cure for whatever ails you, especially a kid’s tummy ache. I never tasted Vernors ‘til we moved here in 1966. Back in Canada we had Canada Dry Ginger Ale and it had the same “bite” to it, and the carbonated bubbles that went up your nose and turned the big blob of ice cream into a frothy cap that threatened to spill over the top of the glass.
I loved Boston Coolers and we’d have them on a hot Summer’s night or sometimes if we out on a Sunday drive in the car and stopped somewhere for a cold drink. I remember when I was a kid that I’d be sucking noisily on my straw and manipulating around the dregs of that delicious drink, much like a mini Hoover vacuum, when my mom would look at me and sternly say “a lady doesn’t slurp her drink Linda” … I continued to do it, just very quietly, but heck – that was no fun.
I didn’t think about that “slurpfest” for many years until Mom and I were running around in the car doing errands on a hot Summer night maybe twenty year ago. We stopped at Wendy’s and got a Frosty drink and headed down to Bishop Park in Wyandotte to people watch and check out the long freighters and sleek pleasure boats.
To enjoy that creamy and cold ice cream Frosty, you really need to have about an hour to get it semi-defrosted and “slurpable” … we had large ones, and even the rolled-down car windows and hot evening didn’t seem to melt them much. It was getting dark so we headed for home. Suddenly, there was no mistaking that sad sound of a mangled straw no longer able to suck up that creamy, half-frozen goodness from the bottom of the cup. All of a sudden, there was a huge slurp and a gurgling sound – it was done. I turned to Mom and remarked “a lady doesn’t slurp her drink Mom” and she peered at me over her glasses which had slipped down her nose from sweating and replied “touché”.
I’ll bet there was a whole lotta slurpin’ going as the crowd was milling about, mingling with the Vernors Gnome and toasting 150 years of ginger cream soda.