"Apparently This Matters" is CNN Tech's skewed weekly look at trending social media topics
This week, Jarrett ponders the broad reach of 7-Eleven's free Slurpee day
The company was prepared to give away 555,000 gallons of the chilly treat
Also? The Big Gulp is big
Editor’s Note: Editor’s note: Each week in “Apparently This Matters,” CNN’s Jarrett Bellini applies his warped sensibilities to trending topics in social media.
On Wednesday, all over the Web, “Slurpee” was the big trend. The date was July 11. Seven. Eleven.
Or, put another way: 7-Eleven. Home of the Slurpee.
Just add some bad character development, and you’ve got the basic premise of a Nick Cage movie.
Of course, it’s no coincidence that this particular word was trending on this particular day. July 11 was the official 85th birthday of the 7-Eleven convenience store chain, and to celebrate they were giving out free 7.11-ounce Slurpees. This apparently caused the Twitterverse to have a collective aneurysm.
The general consensus: “Drink all the Slurpees!!!”
In fact, 7-Eleven was prepared to give away up to 10 million of these things across the United States and Canada.
So, I attempted a little math, which ultimately ended in tears and a mild rash, and determined that 10 million Slurpees equals 71.1 million ounces. Then I did some additional math, which resulted in more tears and a uniquely different rash, and found that 71.1 million ounces equals 555,468.75 gallons.
Then I got a completely unrelated rash and finally embraced the reality that I may need to see somebody.
The point is, you could almost fill an Olympic-size swimming pool with all the Slurpees they were planning to give away. Granted, Michael Phelps would then promptly drink the pool to reach his daily caloric intake. But you could.
And it would be cold. According to 7-Eleven, their famous “semi-frozen carbonated beverage” should be served at a “frosty” 28 degrees. Which makes this next fun fact rather amazing: The No. 1 market in the world for Slurpees is Winnipeg, Manitoba.
You know, where the average low temperature in January is minus 10 degrees. It makes absolutely no sense. Perhaps they just like saying, “Hey, let’s get a Slurp-eh?”
Or maybe Neil Young goes back after each tour and lathers himself in 60,000 ounces of Mountain Berry Blast. Which would be both fascinating and disgusting.
Whatever the reason, this was unbelievable information I just couldn’t process. My phone conversation with the nice 7-Eleven PR lady went something like this:
Me: “Winnipeg? Seriously? Winnipeg?”
Me: “Hmm. Winnipeg. So I’ve got this rash…”
She also told me that, surprisingly, in the United States, the No. 1 market is Detroit. But the No. 1 store for Slurpees is in Kennewick, Washington. I’m not sure what else to do with this information.
I guess … visit Kennewick. Have a Slurpee. Or don’t.
Of course, when it comes to straight-up soda, 7-Eleven also has the Big Gulp. These are great for when you absolutely, positively want to pee for 17 uninterrupted minutes.
And if you’re really thirsty there’s the Double Gulp. This is enough to completely drown a small community. So, watch yourself, Kennewick.
Without question, it’s a lot of soda. Seemingly more than any one person needs. But the science doesn’t lie; 50 ounces of caffeine is pretty much requisite for all mid-to long-range road trips. That, and beef jerky. It’s actually sort of amazing what personal health rules we’ll bend in the process of getting from Point A to Point B when it requires slightly more effort than your standard commute.
“Honey, looks like we’re still 20 miles from Asheville. So you fill up the tank – I’ll grab 36 Nutter Butters.”
And that’s why we have convenience stores. Because they’re awesome.
However, what’s not awesome is the fact that we don’t have 7-Eleven in Georgia. And now I really want a Slurpee.
So, I guess I’m off to Kennewick. You know … before the flood.