I know the title of this one sounds dark, but actually it is the name of what I thought was one of the most heavenly things of all time.
Many years ago, as the sun was going down and we were leaving the field, my friends and I made our way to the concession stand. We had won our little league game — again — and we were on our way to our sweet reward.
We clumsily filed in line as we exchanged dusty high-fives and shouts of victory. We inched ever closer to the order window. Our mouths were watering in anticipation. The boy in front of me, DJ Hughes who was our shortstop, placed his order. He paid his money, received his goods and carefully walked away so as not to accidentally waste any of the goodness.
Finally it was my turn. The rolled-up dollar in my hand was damp and dirty as I placed it on the counter. I said the words that many a Little Leaguer in Madison County had uttered before: “I wanna Suicide please.”
The concession stand worker grabbed a wax-coated paper cup with the Coca Cola logo wrapped around it.
She then began the sequence that made this drink special.
A bit of ice, 3/4 full.
Then she dispenses a bit of Sprite.
Then a bit of Minute Maid Orange.
A shot of Cherry Coke.
And finally, to top it off — Coca Cola. The fluid that brings it all together.
She handed my prize to me with a smile. As I turned away, I gazed into the cold vessel that was already slightly caving in. I looked into the swirl of carbonated goodness and drank deeply.
I didn’t die that night, nor did any of my friends. But we willingly took our chances summer after summer, game after game. We may not have suffered an early fate, but what I do know is that we did taste a bit of heaven