The Tooth That Launched a Thousand Reviews

I gave up all dairy for the month of September. At the time I did it, it was to lose weight. Within a week, a weird chest pain that I had been having for about 6 months went away. Maybe I had a clogged artery that unclogged, maybe I was having heartburn, maybe acid reflux, maybe there was a giant bubble of gas that was released. I don’t know, but it worked. And I lost 3 lbs.

I spent most of September annoyed, not just because I couldn’t have real milk, but because no where had coconut milk, but everywhere has almond milk for some reason. I remembered someone sending me this anti-Almond Milk article. I realize it is a relic from 2014. When I got it, it was completely irrelevant to me. I didn’t get it. Now I completely love it, mostly because of the title, Lay Off Almond Milk You Ignorant Hipsters.

http://www.motherjones.com/tom-philpott/2014/07/lay-off-almond-milk-ignorant-hipsters

This week I found out that my daughter has a cavity. I was miffed because we brush like crazy, use flouride rinses, she doesn’t drink juice, and the dentist puts some sort of anti-cavity sealant on her teeth every time we go. But sure enough, I can visibly see a cavity on a tooth and x-rays prove it. Her first cavity. I’ve failed as a parent.

I asked the assistant when I was leaving how a healthy six year-old can already have a cavity.

Her immediate response, “Does she drink a lot of milk?”

Me, “All day long.”

Assistant, “Milk is really bad for teeth. It has a lot of sugars in it. If you drink it in the morning or mid day and don’t brush again until night, it just sits on teeth all day long creating cavities. You should really only drink milk when you can brush immediately after.”

Oh shit. So all those days she drank milk with lunch. And the mornings I rushed her out the door after eating her cereal. Dammit.

So, now, in addition to me switching to Coconut Milk consumption, my entire family is going with me. My son already prefers coconut milk over dairy milk. (I have no idea why.) He is three and calls it co-co-kah-kah-nut milk. He also orders his pizza without cheese. The first couple of times he did this we stopped him, “Are you SURE you don’t want cheese on your PIZZA?” And as it turns out, he does not want cheese on his pizza. He wants bread with sauce but no cheese. And my daughter is going to coconut milk so all her teeth don’t rot out. And my husband will be forced to go with the flow because I’m not buying milk for the 1 day a week he has cereal.

Every coffee shop, cafe and restaurant I go has almond milk, but not coconut milk. I have no idea why other than genius marketing. Almond milk doesn’t taste good at all. Almonds were not meant to be milked. Almonds were not meant to be in liquid form.

So I repeatedly ask, “Do you have coconut milk?” And they say no, and I ask why not, and they say not enough people ask for it. So I ask repeatedly at the same restaurants, in hopes that it feels like a lot of people ask for it. I’m sure they just think, “Here comes the lady who orders an almond milk latte after asking if we have coconut milk.”

At one place I asked what milks they have and they said, “We have whole milk, 1%, 2%, non-fat, soy milk, and almond milk.” I asked why they don’t have coconut milk and his response was, “We can’t really carry another milk product.”

Really? One carton of coconut milk that will last for 4 months. There’s no room in your industrial fridge for that?

So I’ve started writing passive aggressive reviews, “Great place, but they don’t have coconut milk.”

And this is where I have to hand it to Starbucks. Although they are the coffee mega-store. They are the Wal-Mart of coffee, they do seem to have their finger on the pulse of what consumers want. They have made space in the fridge for coconut milk because it’s what consumers have asked for.

So when local coffee shops complain about business going to Starbucks. Well, you had your chance.

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