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The stars and stripes of my hometown:
mango, raspberry and pina colada

The go-to colors in the United States are, of course, red, white and blue. Old Glory. Our flag. The Stars and Stripes.

In my hometown, the colors are mango orange, raspberry baby blue, and Pina Colada off-white.

Look at those three see-through glass cylinders staring at you as you saunter into my hometown convenience store. Everything in this world boils down to threes.

Don’t believe me? Consider The Three Musketeers, the Three Little Pigs, Three Blind Mice, three-point NBA shooters such as Stef Curry and Kevin Durant, “Three Men and A Baby,” Tolkien’s Trilogy, “Three Eggs and Ham,” and three things you invariably order at McDonalds — a burger, large fries and a milk shake.

Strut alongside me into this stupendous hang-out run by my guy Mo, or maybe it’s Moe. Fix your eyes on the three Steve’s Frozen Chillers machines. They look like three Greek column cylindrical pillars. Notice the liquid eye candy automatically stirring sort of like a witch’s brew. In a store jammed with brilliantly and artificially colored foods such as Cheetos (orange) and Strawberry Pop Tarts (pink), these are the brightest colors.

In the left Greek column stands erect the orange mango frozen, sugar-filled chiller. Taste it. It’s better than orange juice and even an orange Creamsicle bar. Yes, I said it.

You start thinking to yourself that Mo — or is it Moe? — probably squeezed fresh mangos five minutes before you arrived and dropped them into the mango madness machine.

Freshness. Coolness. A sugar addict’s daily kick-me-up.

Summer-time and the sublime. Words that also rhyme every time.

Standing in the center, less than six inches to the right of the mango madness and less than six inches to the left of the Pina Colada Hakuna Matata (Source: “Lion King”), is the raspberry baby blue bombshell. Bring on this bodacious beverage.

You think to yourself, “Why is this called raspberry?” Raspberries are black and maroon. They aren’t blue. Blueberries are blue, but that’s a digression we don’t need to embrace. Not here. Not now.

The blue raspberry chiller looks as if it might not be tasty, certainly not the way the killer orange mango chiller delights your taste buds. Turns out that your boy, Blue Raspberry, tastes almost as good. While it doesn’t taste like a raspberry — neither black nor maroon — the cool liquid is surprisingly fruity. Must be the sugar.

Sharing the sugar is the best description ever to describe how players pass the ball around to teammates to get an open shot in basketball.

The third cylinders soaks and oozes Pina Colada chiller. Steve concocted it. These are Steve’s Frozen Chillers. The first thought you have as you grab your cup and pour the nectar into your clear plastic cup is that song about Pina Coladas that everybody sang in unison circa 25 years ago during Jimmy Buffet’s heyday. Or was that song about margaritas?

Coconut. Cool coconut. Take this chill pill.

The first thought that enters your mind is the fact that the Mounds candy bar is the best tasting and yet nobody everybody talks about that. Snickers gets all the hype, but the blend of dark chocolate and coconut in the Mounds remains unbeatable in Phylum Candy.

Sometime when you have a minute we can talk about all the phylums I had to memorize in a college Organismic Biology class my senior year. Phylum Chordata (vertebrates/fish) and Phylum Cephaloda (squid) and Phylum Crustacea (scorpions). To graduate I had to pass that class about a phantasmagoria of phylums. It was almost a fantastic F.

Jimmy Buffet sang about Pina Coladas. Others, especially country artists, sing about beer and wine. Chances are you won’t run into Jimbo at my hometown convenience store because he lives in Key West or someplace south of my town. Nevertheless, the taste of Pina Colada Steve’s Frozen Chillers ranks up there with Fanta Grape Soda and Orange Hi-C from McDonalds.

I told Mo the other day that I didn’t think he had it in him to break out a set of chilly slushies better than the ones he sold a few years ago. For a few years he left me hanging and wondering.

Turns out, my Man Mo found his mojo.

— Sammy Sportface

Sammy Sportface is possibly America’s best blogger. He is only mildly interested in the truth. To read his new book, Wipe That Smile Off Sammy Sportface, go to Amazon.com.

Reflections of Erma