Friday, June 13, 2008

"Well, I woke up this morning, and I got myself a beer"*

The technology that has gone into beer containers of late is quite impressive. Coors seems to be the leader in the industry. They first came out with the wide-mouth beer can in 1996. Contrary to what I thought, it was not designed to allow for faster beer chugging, but was created to give drinkers an experience that was closer to drinking beer out of a glass. Go figure. I didn't know people actually drank beer for the taste!

Earlier this year Coors introduced the venting beer can. You may have seen the commercial where a guy lets his girlfriend think that his buddy needs to emotionally vent when the guys really just want to pore over some vented beer cans (pun intended!). (I won't even digress into the absurdity of commercials like that...please, don't get me started). Like the wide-mouth can, this technology was designed to give the beer a smoother feel. Coors is also the company behind the temperature indicator on beer labels. Their signature Rocky Mountains turns from white to blue when the beer is cold enough to drink. So much for good-old common sense.

My favorite invention has to be the self-cooling beer can. This little beauty--created by a company called Tempra Technology--uses all kinds of scientific principles (vacuums, evaporation, gels, etc...) to give you the pleasure of a can that cools your beer to the perfect temperature in just three minutes. Finally, someone has found a way to save me all that time I spend waiting for my beer to cool. Maybe they'll even put a little voice recorder on the can to tell me when it's ready.

Don't worry; all you have to do is twist the base of the can. Supposedly, it's all environmentally friendly and won't contaminate the flavor of the beer (again with the whole flavor thing). I even read that you can throw the can on a fire and it won't explode! I know, what a disappointment.

Now, imagine if all this thought, creativity, and innovation were applied to something useful...say to reverse global warming or discover a new power source. Wow, we could solve all the world problems in no time! But really, who needs that...not when you have perfectly cold beer pouring out of a vented can in three minutes. Did I mention I was a wine drinker?

*The Doors