The Agony of Energetic Defeat

The Everything 99¢ Store is a repository for failure. It’s the final destination for market place losers. For the detritus in the battles for consumer’s hearts. For trends that didn’t have the buoyancy to keep a hundred Titanics afloat. For every capitalist Red Bull success, there must be a hefty weight of unpopular runner-ups. These are real products and they represent real dreams of wealth. People invested in these things. Men bankrupted themselves. Women leveraged their homes against these sure things. The money dance goes on to unpredictable drumbeats. It’s the free jazz seizure of capitalist scenes. You sign Nirvana and Pearl Jam, but you might want to forgo putting the money up for Bush. Ratt and Cinderella might hit it on MTV, but put the breaks on the deal with Dangerous Toys and Ugly Kid Joe. Consumerist scenes go relatively unnoticed. They sprout up and die away. They may not be as vital and enduring as scenes in the arts, but they are remarkable in their own way. We are in the midst of the great Energy Drink burnout, and the Everything 99¢ Store is a museum (or mass grave) of tax write-off and misfit beverages. For too many in the land of corporate overreach, market saturation is a concept that simply doesn’t exist. So raise your glass of Red Bull and take a farewell sip to the pink for ladies only “Exclusive” where diamonds are not forever, “Red Rain Hydroplane” which makes me think only of vehicular manslaughter, the Energy Fuel that ran out of gas… “Rip It Power”, “it’s the SUN,” little darling and it ain’t all right, “AZ” who tried to get by on minimalism, the very confusing flavored drink of white tea and lemonade inexplicably and somewhat hyperbolically called “SLAP…” one short word that was too much for one line of type and lastly “Cintron” liquid energy, crackling with actual electricity and contrary to the evocation of citrus in its name is pineapple flavored, passionately. Too bad that passion wasn’t returned by consumer confidence.

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