Consider the Following – The Mayans were way off

There’s been a lot of talk in the news lately about the safety of energy drinks, especially 5-Hour Energy drinks. For those who are unfamiliar with these beverages, 5-Hour Energy drinks come in little two-ounce bottles and are often displayed at gas station counters.
I had never tasted one until the state fair this summer. I walked past a booth where they were passing them out for free. I went up and got one and asked the girl if they really worked. She enthusiastically told me they did, but of course, what else was she going to say?
I do like some caffeine practically every day. I’ve never been much of a coffee drinker, unlike my parents, so my beverage of choice is usually pop. However, I’m trying to cut back on pop because of the calories. I would drink diet pop but it’s hard because in general, diet pop tastes like chemical water to me.
In any event, I was interested in seeing what kind of pick-me-up 5-Hour Energy could give me, especially since they hardly have any calories. I don’t know much about energy drinks outside of the fact that I tried a Red Bull or something years ago and could barely finish it because I didn’t like the taste.
I tried that free bottle of 5-Hour Energy and you know what? The commercial was fairly accurate. I did feel like I had more energy for about five hours. And it wasn’t nervous energy or something crazy. It was just kind of a steady alertness.
So, I was impressed and thought that maybe I could incorporate these types of drinks into the fold. However, the drinks are like $3 a bottle so I kind of balked at the price until I found a box of them at one of those warehouse stores. At that store, the price was much more in line with a fountain pop at the gas station. So, I started drinking 5-Hour Energy from time to time. I later switched to a generic brand to save even more money.
When those news reports came out, my wife acted in mock horror that I was going to an early grave because I occasionally drank them.
As I jokingly explained to her, I had nothing to worry about because I don’t drink 5-Hour Energy anymore. I drink Kirkland Signature Energy Shots, which are a completely different product.
Speaking of early graves, weren’t we all supposed to be wiped out by the X-planet Nibiru, the zombie clown apocalypse or whatever else the end of the Mayan calendar was supposed to cause on Dec. 21?
Needless to say, we’re still here although I was starting to wonder if end times really were on their way after my fantasy football team actually won its division for the first time ever. You may have felt the earth’s rotation stop for a brief second when that happened.
I’m glad we’re still here because I would have missed seeing the little things as my daughters grow up. Moments like when we went to Disney on Ice last month and Pocahontas appeared on the ice, causing our 7-year-old to excitedly exclaim, “yes!” She really likes Pocahontas, which is great, but I think she was one of the few kids in the crowd that would name Pocahontas as one of their favorite princesses.
Another moment was when I was watching a documentary about the Hindenburg disaster the other night. Our 3-year-old wandered over, saw footage of the Hindenburg going down and asked what happened to the balloon. I told her that no one was really sure; it was a mystery. She thought for a second and suggested that the investigators contact Scooby Doo, because, you know, Scooby and the gang are good at solving mysteries.
I was impressed by her reasoning. What a perfectly logical answer for a 3-year-old!
As we enter the new year, you might notice that the paper looks slightly different this week.
For starters, we switched layout programs from Quark to InDesign. It has been like learning a foreign language! You’ll also notice a slightly different look to our bylines and photo cutlines, changes that are uniform across our different papers.
Here’s wishing everybody a great 2013!