Monday, October 5, 2009
Coffee boss coffee boss coffee boss coffee boss coffee boss coffee boss get off my back
The vending machine, noble distributor of cold drinks, vigilant watchman of the Japanese street corner, great steel monolith of refreshment, eater of yen, destroyer of worlds.
There are vending machines almost literally on every street in Japan, and though I'm yet to see one of the used-panty machines of urban legend (perhaps I'm not hanging out in the right areas of Sendai?), I have gotten to know the drinks kind pretty well. I'm particularly taken by the Suntory Coffee Boss.
Look at the strong jawline, the stern brow, the world-weary creases of his face, the jaunty angle of his pipe. Like a wonderful splice of Ernest Hemingway and Cary Grant, the Coffee Boss exudes a classic manliness from his shiny, cobalt, caffeinated pores. Truly, he is the boss of them all.
One quite interesting thing is that companies like Suntory and Asahi makes all sorts of drinks, not just the alcoholic kind. Suntory, for example, does whisky, beer, RTDs, soft drinks, juice, coffee, tea, water and other stuff too. Although thinking about it, Coca Cola probably does the same thing, just under different names, so maybe it's not that interesting. Maybe it's interesting that the corporations don't feel they have to hide their expansiveness here?
Anyway, the Coffee Boss seems to be promoting the "Rainbow Mountain Blend" (or, in Japanese, "reinboo maunten burendo") right now, with none other than Mr Tommy Lee Jones as spokesman!
He has a certain ruggedness which I now associate with the masculine flavour of a smooth Coffee Boss coffee. Actually, Beyonce is plastered on a brand of water at the moment too. I like that celebrities will endorse any old thing over here because they figure that no one will ever see them selling out as hard as they do -- eh, Mr Beckham?
Anyway, I've tried a few flavours of the Boss and they're all remarkably similar so far: cold, sweet, milky and uh... coffeeish. Pretty good though. I could be an iced coffee convert.
This particular golden-canned variation, the "zeitaku dorippo", or "Luxury Drip", is even embossed with the logo.