The other day, I had a conversation with a friend about the merits of investing in a can crusher. The purchase has become increasingly necessary as, one glimpse inside our recycling bin will show you, we are clearly not using our space to its utmost.

That’s because we are addicted to La Croix.

If you, too, are familiar with this obsession, let me be the first to commiserate with you. For us, it started about two summers ago when we were introduced to this brand of sparkling water. I remember looking at its can critically that first time — a friend had brought a case over — and coming away impressed that it looked like it would be marvelously at home at the beach. Or on a boat. Possibly one with a sail.

So I cracked one open. And oh my foes, and oh my friends, what a beautiful sound it was. In terms of satisfaction, the crack of an aluminum can ranks right up there with:

  • a hole in one.
  • taking your hair out of a ponytail after it’s been up all day.
  • taking off nylons/business socks and scratching your calves.
  • using a Coinstar machine, which merits its own column entirely.

Anyways, since I don’t drink pop because I can’t tolerate caffeine (also its own column), I hadn’t experienced the sound of that crack in years.

It, of course, prepped me to me pleased, but it couldn’t possibly have prepared me for the intensity of the fizz that inhabits a can of La Croix. Even if you are the most depressed person in the world, I still feel comfortable in saying your response will be a wholehearted, “Holy macaroni, batman!” The bubbles immediately collect along every surface in your mouth — tongue, teeth, roof, gums — and then, in true comic book style, POP! all at once.

One of Gabrielle’s friends, Reanne, says that drinking a can is “like your leg’s asleep and someone yelled the name of a fruit in the room next door.”

She couldn’t be more accurate.

The pins and needles of a sleeping leg definitely apply to what happens to your mouth here.

As for the fruit next door, that pertains to the very faint flavor of La Croixs in general. If you’re expecting sweet, you’ll need to move on. In fact, if you’re even expecting taste sensation, you’ll be disappointed. The flavor of a La Croix is as subtle as camouflage. You can recognize the lime or orange or pamplemousse, but only if you feel like it.

Apart from its fizziness and flavor, another of its distinctions is the many ways La Croix is pronounced. In fact, you can hardly drink a can La Croix without hearing a debate about what to call it. I had a grocery store bagger get so frustrated a week ago that he called it “LaWhateverIt’sCalledStupidFancyWater.” In French, it’s pronounced, “la craw.” But I think it’s generally accepted in the U.S. as “Lacroy,” which makes it sound kind of naval, I think. Bringing us back to the ocean. On a boat. With a sail.

However, the other essential part, the French part, of a La Croix is its temperamentality. You open one up and you have full passion, the bonfire of bonfires, the quickest of wits, the happiest of happys. But make it wait too long, and this sparkplug quickly changes its mood. Within 30 minutes, you have a deflated, flat can of nothing in front of you. It’s so insipid, in fact, you can hardly remember what it was made of less than an hour before.

So the can of La Croix requires your commitment. Drink it fast and it will reward you with the ultimate thirst quencher. But ignore it, even for just a few minutes, and, like a brooding, angsty boyfriend, all you’re setting yourself up for is a bad party.

So, give it a try, dear reader. Be forewarned that you might become addicted. And be on the hunt for a can crusher.

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