Better Living through Water

One of the perks of working at my office is the fridge, which is typically stocked with a variety of non-alcoholic complimentary beverages. And while I’m not a big soda drinker, I do put back my fair share of bottled water. For the last couple of days, however, we’ve been bone dry in the water department. I thought I could hold out, but by lunch time today, I finally broke down and headed to CVS for a little H2O.

I was chatting on my cell phone with Marc as I approached the building and didn’t give much thought to the few people who ventured up to the automatic “IN” door and then turned back around. So there I am, blahbity blah on my phone while I stand in front of a door that is now very obviously not opening. I turned slightly to notice a CVS employee standing half-way in the “OUT” door and gave him a “what’s up?” look. He leaned in a little closer and almost apologetically whispered, “We’re temporarily closed for a few minutes…we just got robbed.” As I relayed the information to Marc, he pointed out how lucky I was to have not embarked on my water seeking mission five minutes earlier. Troy, on the other hand, was a little saddened by the fact that I wasn’t there in time to have possibly scored free candy.

I decided on CVS because they are generally inexpensive, and they take a debit card — very important considering I never carry cash. So now I was left high and dry (quite literally) in my quest for liquid replenishment. With no other real choice, I finally settled for Starbuck’s, knowing that their little wicker display basket is always stocked with Ethos Water. As I forked over my $1.80 for a single bottle of water, I rationalized the expense by reminding myself that this water, unlike other less socially-conscious water, actually helps people — children to be more specific. I felt good about it and even took a moment to read the darn label for more information. Did you know that water-related diseases are the leading cause of death among children worldwide? No. Ethos (TM) spring water comes from a protected natural source, straight from the earth to you. Hmm…I thought it tasted better than that other corporate water. Sodium Free. Always a plus. 5 cents from the sale of every bottle [goes to] humanitarian water projects. WHAT?!? Five whole cents? Whoopdie Doo. I read it again to be sure that I hadn’t missed a zero in there somewhere, hoping that maybe I misread 50. But no, just 5 cents.

Ethos 003

Don’t get me wrong, it’s better than nothing, but these guys are true marketing geniuses. I’m quite convinced that the other $1.75 is disbursed as follows: $0.35 for the positively cool looking bottle; $0.15 for the bottle’s proportionate share of rent for it’s prime location in the wicker basket; $0.05 for my barista; and $1.20 for Peter & Jonathan, the brainiacs who thought this all up in the first place and whose reproduced signatures grace the aforementioned bottle. Who knows? Maybe I’m just a cynic, but it seems like $0.05 on a nearly-two-dollar bottle of water is a little slim.

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5 responses to “Better Living through Water

  1. I’m one to pay for good design, but I try not to think about how much money I pay for branding. If I did, I’d be the one knocking over CVSs.

  2. CVSssssss
    Personal favorite is 18th and Illinois.

  3. Hey, that’s right next door to Marc’s office. You’ll have to stop by and say hello to him next time you’re hanging out there. Plus, it’s a favorite of mine when I realize at 11:00 at night that I’ve forgotten to refill my prescriptions.

  4. Friends do NOT let friends shop at CVS. It is an evil company!!! It goes into small towns and destroys historic buildings, putting in their place horrible cookie-cutter crap!!! I think of the historic Friends Church in Richmond, Indiana–gone, gone, gone for a cheap drugstore. And a beautiful old building at a prominent downtown intersection in Peru. And another in Crawfordsville. Walgreen’s is no better–it destroyed a magnificent bank in East Chicago that John Dillinger once robbed.

    Boycott chain drugstores!!! Buy your water at the grocery. Or better yet, filter it from the tap. Bottled water has done so much to destroy the environment. (All that petroleum and energy to make those bottles that most people throw away.)

    The air is getting thin up here on my soapbox. . . .

  5. I heard on the news that there was a carjacking in a CVS parking lot. And we call our local CVS the “sword wielding CVS” because of an incident last year. It seems like they attract danger, I would stay away from them if I were you.

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