“Pensa-Cola, the Thoughtful Choice!”

NOTE: This is a RE-POST from about 4 years ago on Xanga. There are 800+ like it here, in the spiffy clickable archives.; I just picked one at random. Enjoy?

I need help. I’m usually so helplessly smart, but this one’s got me in a quandry: To ‘go for it’, or not?
On the one hand, if I bag the whole venture now, I’m only out a couple calls from Florida. Collect? Why does she call collect?
Somehow she got my email, and sent me an interesting proposal, at first sight

Dear {Your Name Here} Greetings. Hi, my name is Janey and I am burning deep inside with desire to help you become richer that your deepest dreams. My business idea, which must be eyes-only until we speak, is,  you will quickly realize, a stairwell to heaven. Please call me at 850-529-1416 ASAP. You won’t be sorry./ Janey.

Ok, guys, I’m not stupid. I checked out the area-code: Pensacola, and yup, there’s a bunch of Janey’s living in that neck of the woods, so…um…so far so good.
No one answered the first three times I dialed. Hmm.. playin’ hard to get, huh?
Then bingo. “Sir, we have a collect call from {‘Janey’} in Florida. Will you accept the charges?”
“Sure”, I said. Hey I was already holding the receiver to my ear, why not? She got right to the point, after being convinced by my sweet-sounding “Um.. hello.. Janey?” that I was of high moral character, dripping with business acumen, and worthy of life-long trust. Yup, all that. They know this stuff, go figure how.
“So anyway, “Pensa-Cola®“, get it?” she bubbled. “And we can put a picture on the can of that French lady, you know, ‘Rennie Desk-Arties’, they burned her at the stake, cause she said “I still believe it moves”  Then: We’re going for the ‘pensive’ market. ‘Pensive but not expensive’
I was glad she added that. First part I actually grasped.
“Aren’t we like, mixing up a couple characters, Janey? I mean, Joan of Arc, Galileo..”
she ‘corrected me. “Give me a rock and a cold refreshing Pensa-Cola® and I’ll move in with you.. and your mom.”
“He didn’t say that, I mean, ‘she‘ didn’t.”
I didn’t know where to start.”Plus, a public execution for a logo? What’s next, Caryl Chessman “It’s in the bubbles.”?
“Ok then, we’ll just use the “I drink, therefore I exist” girl.”

“Um..’guy’. he’s a Rene, sweetheart. it’s French.”
I was beginning to relax and enjoy the ride. Hell, we’d recoup the toll charges after we sold the first sixpack.
Janey kept going…”But on the back it’s gotta say:…otherwise there’d just be a dumb puddle around my feet on the floor. I liked the ironic tone she used.
“Hah.” I laughed. “Yeah, he could be sitting on a rock, looking real thoughtful, musing, you know.”
She sounded like she agreed, adding “Sure, we’ll do the shoot with the sun rising over the Bay, back behind my house.”
I made a note to check Google maps, but later, when the dizziness went away.
“So, what’s in it. You know, the flavor?” I thought we oughta nail that down, like here in the first staff meeting. On the phone.
“Oh, thoughtful stuff. Like sugars, esters, ethyls, …diazepam..”
..” I sensed where she was going. “Like, ‘It’s the real thing’ only real laid-back.
“Yeah, we keep that part proprietary.” she said, conspiratorialy. Cute, this ‘Janey’
“This may just be the start of a beautiful..” I started to say.
“Yes, a beautiful line of spin-offs, you know, like.. hey.. “Mensa-Cola®
“You mean with Einstein on the can?”
At least I pronounced his name right.
“Sure, an’ he’s saying “Don’t play dice with your choice of soft-drinks.”
“Hmm.. they might not get it?”
I didn’t want to take too many risks with her capital, or was it mine? Later for that.
“Well,” she whispered, “we’ll put some special ingredients in that one too. It’ll make ’em smart.”

“Oh, you know..”
“You mean, amphetemine?” For the first time I caught myself wondering whether the taps and clicks on the line might be.. Oh well, it’s not like we’re selling the stuff yet.
“No, save that for “Tensa-Cola®: ‘When you need to be.. oh.. forceful'”
“And Sensa-Cola®,”
I offered, ‘When ya needa like, think seriously about where your life’s headed’?”
“That’s a keeper… er.. what did you say your name was?”
Janey wanted to ‘close the deal’.
“Solberg. One ‘L’ I have a Xanga site you can read.. you know.. get a better…”
“I know that.” Why do you think I picked you?”

I had to think about that question a while. While she waited. Patiently. Sure, I’ve had lots of hair-brained jobs, all gruesomely documented, some even with circles and arrows to prove just where the hair and the brain parted.
Could it be that she’d pegged me as a, god-forbid, as a sucker?
I told her quickly how much I appreciated her trust, and promised to call back tomorrow, to cement the deal. She made the usual cooing sounds, and we hung up, a good half-hour of trans-atlantic underwater cable time spent. ‘It’ll be deductible’, I reassured my better judgement.

So anyway, what does anybody think? Should I jump in head-first, or slip my toe gingerly into the water, or fix myself a good stiff drink? Or any combination of the above?

Q: Um.. she reads your Xanga, duh?
A: Good point. I forgot that one. Oh well.’Transparency’. Everything out in the open. That’s big these days, right?
Q: You need help, Johnny
A: Yeah, you’re right. We didn’t talk about bottles vs cans.


12 thoughts on ““Pensa-Cola, the Thoughtful Choice!”

  1. MelFamy

    I live near the town from which Pensa-Cola draws its name, And I can think of two Janeys without trying hard. Three.
    I say cash in the IRA and the 401k. Get another mortgage on the house, and dive in. You can’t go wrong with a Janey.

  2. jsolberg

    @MelFamy – ya ‘all’ah, See, I got no bizness-sense, Mel.  Duh, market-analysis. That’s why the guys with the name-brand shirts get their MBA’s. I better stick to the junior-league after all.


    You might not have talked about bottles vs cans but you did mention Einstein on the can. Very creative, as usual. “Coice” makes me think of a new way to say, Please pass the Soyce. For added salt. Then there was the MSN article on “choice”; the author budget-cuts pay by 15%. It’s not clear to me whether it was her pay or her employees’ pay, but there’s something ironic in all of this.


    Anonymous? Invisible, maybe (shall we discuss soul-mate at a later date? Imaginary?) I have a theory why you missed the ‘H’. Maybe H is purple like the background, which probably looks like one huge ‘H’, therefore, it’s been there the whole time (in disguise).
    Maybe that’s like what a soul-mate is. …hmmm, My maiden name starts with an ‘H’. Are you connecting dots?
    Have a great day!


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