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We get all kinds of unwanted crap in the mail. Yesterday, Amanda Hess got this package from Red Bull, advertising its latest product line — the Red Bull Energy Shot, these two-ounce poppers designed to give you a sugar-and-caffeine rush when, say, your boss calls for yet another hour-long, narcolepsy-inducing meeting.  All of which is fine; I don’t have to buy or drink this product.

But Hess showed me the hand-written note that came in her package.  It ended with this sentence: “Please share with Tim Carmen [sic], who is also a friend of Red Bull.”

Now, I didn’t take this note literally. I mean, I’ve never knowingly drank a Red Bull in my life. I considered this fraternal reference more like a facebook friendship, in which you horde all sorts of virtual “friends,” like a politician collects votes, in order to market to them, manipulate them, and generally convince them you’re one charming motherfucker.  As such, I thought I should get to know my new friend better.

So I drank a Red Bull Energy Shot. Or tried to drink one.

It smells like cough syrup, and it tastes like cough syrup cut with SweeTarts and mixed with Kool-Aid. I’m sorry, but I expect more from my friends.