This “no soda?” thing I have imposed on myself is probably going to be a fairly short lived experiment.  Yesterday was HELLA rough.  Details to come.  

Your responses to my little experiment were surprising.  Points made on this site, FB and in person ranged from fairly salient, to bat-FRICKIN-crazy.  Seriously, I get the feeling that the diet soda discussion is only one step away from someone strapping on a bomb, lighting the fuse and stepping into a crowded market place hollering “Coka Cola Akbar!” Or maybe (depending on their side of this debate) they’d holler “Death to Coka Cola!”  

My mouth has been like the Sahara.  My head pounds.  Low grade stuff, but enough that I can count heartbeats by the pain surges.  Sucks.  My leg goes like a jackhammer every time I sit down.  Someone pointed out that the reason I yelled at that kid who broke the rain gutter on the outside of our building on Tuesday probably had more to do with my Tab-less existence than his profound idiocy.  But I doubt this.

The Jones’n is the worst part.  I’m constantly Jones’n.  Sitting here at the computer, it occurs to me that I keep reaching to the shelf on the left of this screen (where I keep my DC while writing).  There is something about the writing process that calls for Diet Coke.  This is a harder process without it.  Today I walked over to the fridge under the Jack Lalane photo about three dozen times.  It is where I keep my Tab.  It was CREEPING Cole out that I kept buzzing the tower like that.  Sorry bro.   

Tried some herbal tea today.  Meh...

The only reason I’m still in this is pride.  There is a little curiosity there, but mostly stupid, stupid pride.  Oh well, in for a penny - in for a pound, right?  I have created some rules and procedures for this experience, as it appears I am on a journey now (likely a very short one).  


1. To do this right, it seems to me that I should eliminate all the bad players.  Soda has a bunch of stuff in it that fanatic nutritionists claim is bad for me.  There seems to be no point in eliminating aspartame without also eliminating carbonation (although I’m sure there is nothing wrong with either).  So, both are gone.  As are artificial colors (in my drinks), artificial flavors, ALL types of artificial sweeteners (maybe not Stevia).  NOT the stimulant.  Nope, never that!

2. I’m looking for something to sip on (preferably with caffeine).  It is what I do with the 2 diet sodas I drink per day.  To those of you who are suggesting I simply go without ANYTHING or switch to water - it is not an option.  I feel like sipping on something all day.  It adds to my quality of life.  I simply want it.  NO, I don’t need it, but there are a ton of things I do/have in life that I don’t absolutely need.  I’m not trying to be a monk.  Just hoping some pain in my leg will go away, plus a couple of other things.     

3. I’m not doing this objectively. But I’m going to do it right (for as long as it lasts).  At the end of this process (TBD), I would like to be able to say that giving up diet soda had no redeeming value.  It didn’t cure my knee, stomach or headaches.  It just made me miss it.  At which time I will pop the top on a delicious, delicious diet soda and commence to sip to my heart's content.  I will make up for all the lost time without it while holding my tongue and keeping the middle parts of my hand down when engaged in the “Diet Soda?” discussion from henceforth.  

4. I will bring and bear all of my training to this process.  There would be few people on earth who pay as much attention to their body as I do.  With my unique training and daily routines, I sit perched to shed some light on this subject where others may not be able.  Objectivity will be a chore, so Rules/Procedures #5 is up to you.

5.  Gonna need your help.  Your perspective is going to be valuable to this effort.  

6.  I will post updates whenever there is new info.  

It has been 4 days and I have noticed NOTHING different.  As I said before, the only thing that keeps me from caving is pride.  For now, the only thing I can think of that is worse than going through another day of relative misery at the hands of being Tab-less is the thought of failing in front of you.  Shallow as that sounds, it'll drive me.  At least a little ways.  And while I'm on this journey (probably over by this time tomorrow), perhaps I can learn a few things about myself, about these cravings, about this discussion and maybe (as cheesy as it sounds) about life.  

Questions I hope to answer or at least address in a thoughtful way:

1.  Is this mainly psychological or physiological?  Which parts are which?  Why?
2.  Can this be classified as an "addiction?"  How do I treat it, whether it is or not?
3.  Which parts of the anti-DS side have credence?  Which parts are pure bogus?  Why?
4.  Which parts of the pro-DS side have credence?  Which parts are pure bogus?  Why?
5.  How will quitting DS affect me?
6.  Is it possible to quit at all?
7.  SHOULD I quit drinking DS?

What questions am I missing?  Please post to comments.