The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
  • Front.winner
    REFEREE Camden Miller raises the hand of Morenci Jr. Dawgs wrestler Ryder Ryan as his opponent leaves the mat in disappointment. Morenci’s youth wrestling program served as host for a tournament Saturday morning to raise money for the club. Additional photos are on the back page.
  • Front.bank.2
    SHERWOOD STATE Bank opened its Fayette office at a grand opening Friday morning, drawing a large crowd to view the renovated building. Above, Burt Blue talks to teller Cindy Funk, while his wife, Jackie, looks around the new office. The Blues missed the opening and took a quick tour on Tuesday. Few traces remain of the former grocery store and theater, however, part of the original brick wall still shows in the hallway leading to the back of the building. The drive-through window should be ready for customers later in the month.
  • Front.carry.casket
    CARRYING—Riley Terry (blue jacket) and Mason Vaughn lead the way, carrying an empty casket outside to the hearse waiting at the curb. Morenci juniors and seniors visited Eagle Funeral Home last week to learn about the role of a funeral director and to understand the process of arranging for a funeral.
  • Front.lift
    MORENCI student Dalton McCowan puts everything into a dead lift attempt Saturday morning during the Wyseguy Push/Pull event. Lifters helped raise more than $1,600 for the family of the late Devin Wyse, a former Morenci power-lifter who graduated last year. Commemorative T-shirts are still available by contacting teacher Dan Hoffman.
  • Front.make.three
    FROM THE LEFT, Landon Wilkins, Ryan White and Logan Blaker try out their artistic skills Saturday afternoon at the Morenci PTO’s first Date to Create event. More than 50 people showed up to create decorated planks of wood to hang from rope. The event served as a fund-raiser for miscellaneous PTO projects. Additional photos are on the back of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.office
    NEW OFFICES—Fayette village administrator Steve Blue speaks with tax administrator Genna Biddix at the new front desk of the village office. Village council members voted to use budgeted renovation funds targeted for the old office and instead buy the vacant bank building on the corner of Main and Fayette streets. The old office was sold to Sherwood State Bank. When everything is put into place in the spacious new village office, an open house will be scheduled. Council member David Wheeler donated all of his time needed to make changes in the bank interior to fit the Village’s needs.

2006.07.19 Drink up...L.A. is just 151 Cokes a day away

Written by David Green.

By RICH FOLEY

Did you see where a weight-loss instructor in Missouri is suing Coca-Cola over their consumer loyalty program, claiming it encourages children to drink deadly amounts of the soft drink?

Coke’s plan offers prizes ranging from free bottles of the product and movie rentals all the way up to free vacations. It’s the vacation prize that’s raised the hackles of Julia Havey.

Havey’s lawsuit claims that to accumulate enough reward points to qualify for the Los Angeles trip, a person would have to drink 151 cans of Coke each day until the promotion ends in January. “You will die before you can consume all those products,” stated Havey’s lawyer at a news conference.

Sounds pretty scary, doesn’t it? It’s not something I’d care to try to do. I doubt that anyone could drink that much of any liquid in a day, be it pop, milk, water or anything else. Then to keep on drinking a similar amount every day for six months? Not too likely.

But then, do the math of what it would cost to try this even if you desired to do so. Figuring a vending machine price of 75 cents per can, you would spend about $20,000 on pop by next January. Of course, Havey and her lawyer conveniently fail to point out that not many children have the cash to afford that much Coke. Nor would many parents have the means or inclination to provide it. It would be a lot cheaper just to pay for the vacation outright.

Besides, to qualify for prizes, you have to enter a code found on the can on an Internet site to receive credit for the purchase. Anyone surviving their daily dose of 151 cans of fluid would then have to go online and enter 151 code numbers to get credit for their consumption. I would think anyone who just survived drinking nearly 15 gallons of Coke might be doing something other than getting on the computer.

A Coke spokesman stated that customers can play online games and win up to 50,000 points without even buying a company product. Frequent visitors to the website are more likely to win point prizes and qualify for the bigger rewards. Most of the prizes offered require 100 points or less, making them the most likely to be acquired by someone actually drinking a more normal quantity of pop.

Habitual readers of this space know of my disdain for Coke products in general, so it feels a bit strange to be sticking up for them, especially when I’ll never accumulate the 16,000 points necessary to get the sheet metal from Bobby Labonte’s NASCAR Dodge offered as part of the promotion. But, in fairness, a dumb lawsuit is a dumb lawsuit, no matter who’s being sued.

Havey denies Coke’s suggestion that her lawsuit is only an attempt to sell her weight-loss books. On her website, Havey, whom I’d never heard of prior to the suit and is not a doctor, by the way, claims if she wanted to sell more books, she wouldn’t attempt to hinder the consumption of products likely to cause weight gain. Sounds reasonable, doesn’t she?

Then she adds, “Don’t feel the need to buy my books, tapes, videos or advice to make positive changes in your life, it isn’t mandatory that you do.” At this point, I can almost imagine her thinking, “If only there was some way I could make it mandatory!”

And don’t think that I’m being too hard on her. Of the several demands that Havey makes of Coke in return for dropping her lawsuit, one is that a director of Coca-Cola have one of his children drink 151 cans of the product on television.

In announcing the suit, Havey said, “We’re parents, and this isn’t right for our children.” But it’s acceptable for a Coke director to let his child do it for Havey’s pleasure on television?

She’s right, of course, that drinking that much pop isn’t good for you, but if she’s any kind of a parent, her child or children should be taught that at home, rather than asking the courts to do her job for her. You’d think a weight-loss instructor would know that much. If not, I’m pretty certain I wouldn’t want to be relying on any of her books or videos for counsel, even if they came free with a purchase of Coke. At no cost, I still suspect her advice would be overpriced.

  - July 19, 2006
 

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