ryan.sandridge.org

Bad Idea (aka Dumb Thing Ryan Did Lately)

Hi, my name is Ryan, and I'm a Diet Coke addict. [Hi, Ryan]

I've tried to kick the habit a few times, but I always fall off the wagon. Not only am I an addict, but I'm very particular about how I have it. I like it very cold and I can only stand it on ice if it is from a fountain (they kick up the carbonation high enough that the flattening that occurs over ice balances out). At home I prefer to drink it straight from an aluminum can.

This means that it needs to be kept in the refrigerator. But what happens when you run out of cold ones, and you want one NOW. I can't resort to pouring it over ice! So I had to devise a way of cooling a can of diet coke down very rapidly.

Plan A was pursued last summer. It involved filling with water a plastic container long enough to lay a can in, then putting it in the freezer. This would be kept until the inevitable occasion when I needed to cool a can of diet coke quickly, at which time the can would be layed on the ice and rolled the can so that it melted the ice into the shape of the can. This sort of worked, but it had several flaw. The worse was that it still took 10+ minutes to get it to an acceptable drinking temperature (barely acceptable) and you had to sit there spinning the can the whole time.

Then, earlier this week, I got hit with an email hoax saying that "ice wave's" form in Lake Huron. My mind started wandering, and despite Lake Huron being a fresh water lake, I started thinking about the melting point of salt water ice. I wondered if my freezer was warm enough for salt water to remain liquid. It turns out if you add enough salt, it indeed will not freeze in my freezer.

So Plan B was to keep a tall enough plastic container filled with salt water in the freezer. The first time I tested it, it worked magnificently. I fully submerged a room temperature can, went about preparing my lunch, and 8 minutes later removed the can, and was delighted with VERY cold. In fact, ice had just started to develop in the diet coke. Six minutes is probably perfect.

But that wasn't good enough, was it? Today I grabbed a can of diet coke from my refrigerator (which I keep set on "coldest"), but for some reason the can didn't feel cold. I thought, why not cool it down just a bit more, so I submerged it in the salt water bath for about 1 or 2 minutes. I took my lunch and soda (unopened) over to the coffee table where I could eat and upgrade the software on the Mac mini.

When I opened the can I was stunned by the force of the explosion of sticky nectar that erupted from the can. The blast radius (about 5 feet) was remarkable really. I hurriedly tried to contain the damage as the fluid soaked into my computer keyboard, my remote controls, my coffee table, and my floor. The cleanup took at least 10 minutes, as I continued to find spots on every piece of furniture and floor in the vicinity. If detectives tried to re-create the crime scene, they'd sound like this (I've been trying to figure out how to work that link into a post for a few days now).

I kept thinking while I was cleaning it up, that I had to blog about it, but thought it would be more appropriate on Joe's blog.

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What? What is this?
You trying to muscle in on my action, bro? New blog design looks good. joelogon, April 03, 2008 13:10


You need more hobbies Anonymous Coward, April 04, 2008 04:56


That's awesome. Thanks for the laugh. Elizabeth, April 04, 2008 09:13


I'm with you on the Diet Coke addiction. It's on my list of things to attack as a part of my New Year's resolutions. The rules are that I can't have a Diet Coke unless it's a fountain one (in the winter, that required walking really far in the cold, so required true commitment and need there) or in mixed drinks. I TOTALLY agree with you that canned Diet Coke should not be served over ice. Only fountain ones. And those are the best. And now I totally want one. Arghhh! Haha. LJ, April 08, 2008 05:26