If you haven’t heard of Liquid Death, the image above might conjure thoughts of an alcoholic beverage or an energy drink. That’s what I thought when I saw my son with this can the first time. He laughed at me and explained that it’s just sparkling water. He explained he “likes the taste” which made me chuckle. In my mind, water has no taste.
I have since heard stories that one of the ideas behind the name, design of the logo and the can itself is that people who are not drinking alcohol at social events, can walk around with a can that could pass for a beer. Another story I heard on the radio was that some parents have praised the company for making water “cool” and their kids are now drinking water as opposed to soft drinks and juices.
When I started writing about Liquid Death, my focus was on the way they marketed their product which motivates us to do something relatively good for our health. We all should probably drink more water. But, as I thought about it more, the appeal of it to me was about how they influenced the consumer to do something good. The actual marketing strategy itself is not very different from the way Camel cigarettes used Joe Camel to influence teenagers to smoke. I was at lunch recently when my guest commented that buyers need to beware, especially in present times. I think that buyers always have needed to beware, and we have many examples throughout history where consumers were duped. I believe maintaining awareness is considerably more difficult than in the past because the influence or manipulation starts long before we see the actual advertisement for a product.
If you have seen the movie, The Social Dilemma, you know what I’m talking about. Social media and social networking are designed to manipulate and influence what we watch, hear, join, and purchase. We can’t avoid it, but we can be more diligent about our research into what we truly want and not what companies want us to like and purchase. Of course, there is still a part of me that is glad that my son was influenced to drink more water.
Take care and stay safe.
And Finally: Matters of Life and Death by Henry MarshAs a retired brain surgeon, Henry Marsh thought he understood illness, but he was unprepared for the impact of his diagnosis of advanced cancer. And Finally explores what happens when someone who has spent a lifetime on the frontline of life and death finds himself contemplating what might be his own death sentence.
As he navigates the bewildering transition from doctor to patient, he is haunted by past failures and projects yet to be completed, and frustrated by the inconveniences of illness and old age. But he is also more entranced than ever by the mysteries of science and the brain, the beauty of the natural world and his love for his family. Elegiac, candid, luminous and poignant, And Finally is ultimately not so much a book about death, but a book about life and what matters in the end.