Coke or Cola?

The first drink I ever ordered in a for­eign bar was in Birken­head, UK in the ear­ly 90s.

Me: “I would like a bour­bon and Coke please.”

Pom­mie Bar­man: “A what?”

Me: “Bour­bon and Coke?”

Pom­mie Bar­man: “You mean a bour­bon and cola?”

Ooooh… Coke fark­ing Zero? Well, you must be sophisticated.

Me: “Ah sure, thanks.”

Being young, impres­sion­able and will­ing to learn from my mis­takes, the next time I went to the bar, I hap­pened to have a dif­fer­ent bar­man, and the con­ver­sa­tion went some­thing like this:

Me: “I would like a bour­bon and cola please.”

Pom­mie Bar­man II: “Cola? That’s hilar­i­ous. Is that an Aussie thing? Most peo­ple ask for a bour­bon and Coke. Ha ha ha ha. Do you mind if we use Coke? Ha ha ha. You Australians.”

It wasn’t worth explaining.

I just filed it under “anoth­er Sit-Com moment.”