The Cap Distribution Blues (3/4/04)
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Do you think you must be blind, incompetent, or occupying a strange nether universe where reality bends like the willow just because you haven't been able to find a single potentially-free-song-bearing yellow Pepsi cap? Well, fear not, people; there's actually at least a 30% chance you're none of those things. While we haven't exactly performed an exhaustive search, we'd like to point out that the big 100 million song giveaway officially commenced over a month ago, game caps had shown up in some places a week before that, and yet we still haven't spotted a single yellow-capped Sierra Mist as we've poked our heads into various convenience stores here in the greater Boston area. In fact, we've only even seen a few iTunes Pepsi bottles-- but a thoroughly ridiculous number of Diet Pepsi ones. So you see, when it comes to cap distribution, something just ain't right.

Not convinced? Then take faithful viewer Frozen Tundra's advice and check out USA TODAY, which confirms that Pepsi has done one seriously lousy job of getting its product out on the market. It's been over a month since the company blew untold gazillions on its "hey, everybody look at some kids who steal" Superbowl commercial, and yet New York, arguably the iPod capital of the world, reportedly only just got its first shipment of yellow-capped beverages last week. Worse yet, those bottles still haven't shown up in Los Angeles, and Pepsi admits that they won't make it out there "until mid-March." Considering the limitations listed in the promotion's official rules, that puts certain geographically-challenged iTunes fans at a serious disadvantage; the promotion officially ends one second before midnight on March 30th, which means Los Angelinos are only going to have about two weeks in which to score as much Pepsi as possible. Hitting the 200-song limit is going to be a real challenge out there, unless they immediately start supplementing with Slurpees and Big Gulps.

Suddenly our Sierra Mistless existence seems like far less of an injustice. The only up side to this whole nightmare is that Apple is 100% blame-free, since the promotion is entirely a Pepsi thing-- Apple just provides the tunes. Still, we can't help but feel a certain sense of Déjà vu. Remember when Apple made a big media thing about the brand new Power Mac G4s coming in 400, 450, and 500 MHz flavors, and then was forced to drop those specs back to 350, 400, and 450 MHz versions? Remember why? It had a little something to do with chip availability issues and a certain semiconductor manufacturer.

So there you have it, folks: the yellow Pepsi caps are evidently being made (or not made, as the case may be) by Motorola. Say, do you suppose they classified the whole "tilt" debacle as an "erratum"?


 
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The above scene was taken from the 3/4/04 episode:

March 4, 2004: Why did Apple's stock price just shoot up to its highest level in almost two years? Meanwhile, Pepsi admits that while its iTunes giveaway started over a month ago, some markets won't get their first game pieces until mid-March, and Michael Dell gives up his CEOship to spend more time pondering his company's "big picture"...

Other scenes from that episode:

  • 4547: Explaining The Inexplicable (3/4/04)   Holy paper gain, Batman-- what the heck was going on with Apple's stock price today? Faithful viewer Dana Sutton pointed out that it clawed its way nearly a buck and a quarter higher-- over five percent-- to close at $25.16, which MacMinute notes is the stock's highest closing price since May of 2002...

  • 4549: So Long, Farewell, Get Lost (3/4/04)   "Michael Dell is out as CEO!" shouted Katie (AtAT's Resident Fact-Checker and Goddess of Minutiae) from the next room, at which point we knew immediately that Dell's resignation would be the single most-suggested plot point in AtAT's history...

Or view the entire episode as originally broadcast...

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