One hundred twenty-five years ago today, in Atlanta, Ga, a momentous event took place. The after effects are still with us in ways that could never have been envisioned by James S Pemberton or the customers of Jacobs Pharmacy. For those untold millions whose thirst has been quenched by a ” Co-Cola” as my wife famously said after the birth of our first child, and Mello- Yello lovers everywhere, it should almost be a holiday. Yep, it was the day in which the first Coke was served.
I don’t really care much about the secret formula or if somebody has actually published it somewhere. I have very little interest in knowing that the beverage actually had cocaine for a time. I just know that there have been many times that nothing but a Coke would satisfy or quench my thirst as jingles have proclaimed. It has settled my stomach many times, has smoothed the way for many a hot dog and hamburger and still does. In the interest of disclosure I would be remiss if I failed to mention that Mello-Yello shares the top spot now. But it is a Coke product, of course.
It is interesting that an NC native, the home state of Pepsi, would be such a loyal Coke consumer, but there you have it. I well remember in my hometown of Leaksville, NC as it was known then, watching the Coke bottles go round and round at a bottler? or distributor and thinking how cool that was.
But in the interest of history as I remember it I recall that while living in Columbus, Ga in the late 70′s and early to mid 80′s that there was the John S Pemberton house located on a brick paved street near the Chattahoochee River where I often indulged my then affinity for running. There was a plaque on the grounds identifying that house as being that of one John S Pemberton who concocted the formula for Coke and then rushed off to the big city.
Actually he probably refined the formula after moving to Atlanta where the product was not well received until being bought by Asa Chandler with the rest being history. Ironically for me, Dr Pemberton, a pharmacist by trade, was actually born in North Carolina and buried in Columbus. Finally I have an NC connection for Coke. Have to go now, it is time for a Mello-Yello!
- Coca-Cola Company Illuminates Headquarters to Celebrate 125th Anniversary (shoppingblog.com)
- Coca Cola inventor, John Stith Pemberton was a Morphines (fmiyar.com)
The above title came from a phrase that I was ” reliably ” quoted as using often as a young child . It says a couple of things , I guess . First, that I had a small problem with words ( here’s another – Esso spelled Pepsi -Cola ) and that I was a happy child which reportedly I was . As we age , it seems to become harder to be happy and even harder , nigh impossible to stay happy for any length of time . I am gradually and too slowly coming to grips with the idea that happiness is not the end all that some ( even preachers ) would have us believe but rather we should seek joy and/or contentment whichever speaks more to you . In church , we just finished a four week series on Habakkuk , who learned that happiness aint where its at , so to speak . Read through those three chapters sometime and specially focus on the last three verses in Chapter 3 . When we arrived at them today, I noticed numerous notes in my Bible that I had from a well done sermon from about 6 years ago from my then pastor, Dr Glynn Dickens . He and my current pastor , Mike Gothard approached the topic from different angles but with similar and well put conclusions . As Mike said , scripture abounds with lessons on contentment and joy but not so much happiness – see Hebrews 11 and Philippians 4:13 . So , I seek , not always successfully , to focus not the circumstances that change but on the realities that do not – Hebrews 13:8 .
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