When I was a kid, in the basement of Saint George School, there was an old Coca Cola machine. It was kind of like an ice chest and when you lifted the lid there were all the sodas trapped in a little soda maze. You moved the soda of choice, always Orange Crush for me, down through the maze and over to the exit. When you dropped your nickel into the slot, the mechanism would release the bottle as you pulled up on it. Sometimes I'd buy two just because it was so much fun to move the bottles through the maze.
I don't drink much soda any more. Maybe once a day I'll drink a Diet Coke, and of course if I'm having a cocktail it'll be a club soda with vodka. Mark doesn't drink much more than I do, maybe two sodas a day, but you would never know it from the hoard of soda twelve packs sitting out in the sun porch. It seems like every time he returns from the store I am schlepping two or three of them in from the car.
"They were on sale. Three for the price of two."
"Once again Mark, you do not save money buying crap on sale if you don't need it. You still have soda sitting here from last year." For that I get the stink eye stare from Mark. It's a fact that there is soda sitting out there that Mark brought home not just because it was on sale, but because the packaging or the flavor offered was different. It's like dangling a shiny object in front of a magpie, Mark just cannot resist. Once again Mark's hoarding gene has brought clutter into the house. But I have an idea of what to do with all those oblong soda cartons. There's a story by Edgar Allen Poe called The Cask of Amontillado, and if Mark keeps filling the house with boxes of soda it just might end for him the way it ended for Fortunado.