Red Pop and Hans Kirk’s The Fishermen

I’ve lost something called Red Pop. I remember being fabulously excited, back in high school, because there was a product that was pop, and that was red, and so they had just called it Red Pop, and they sold it at Hy-Vee. I didn’t really bother buying any for myself, of course, since I’m not a big fan of the “red” flavor – I prefer clear, purple or brown pops. But, it came up in conversation (the pop-vs.-soda debate again) and when I went to look for a bottle, it was gone. Vanished, and not even a memorial web page. I’m beginning to think I completely made it up. But I *swear* an acquaintance of mine had scanned in the logo… Mike Campbell, are you out there? Bueller?

Anyway. It strikes me that the pop-vs-soda thing is really my token effort at resisting California idiom. I make a point of using “pop” more often than I ever did when I lived in Iowa, but the rest of my midwestern twang is softening just a little, I think. My friends here have commented on my excessive use of the word “dude” and I’ve even caught myself calling something “rad” without thinking about it… yikes! My project for tomorrow, while I’m cleaning ovens, is to pay particular attention to the quality of my vowels, and see if I notice anything interesting about them. Round about 3 in the afternoon, I’ll start wishing I had some formal linguistic/phonological training, and piss the hell out of all my coworkers somehow whining about how Caltech doesn’t offer any interesting hum classes. Or else I’ll be gritting my teeth wishing P. would shut up. I went to high school with P. He’s one of those congenial, congenitally annoying people, who speak loudly and often, and are nice enough that you feel guilty for disliking them. But most of the time he’ll be vacuuming things, and that vacuum cleaner is blessedly loud.

And I read straight through a good book today – The Fishermen by Hans Kirk. It follows a group of super-pious fishermen who move to the other side of Jutland, where the fishing is better but the people aren’t nearly so puritanical, and the subsequent culture clash. It was an actual, compelling, and subtle portrayal of fundamentalists, which is rare in most of what I read. Plus, he used a rather interesting stylistic device, by doing away with quotation marks. Dialogue was just stuck into the flow of the text, supposedly to “facilitate transitions between characters’ thoughts and speech and to increase the distance between author and reader by creating a type of objectivity in which the narrator disappears behind the characters and their collective group,” according to the translator’s introduction. I’m still trying to figure out what the last part of that actually means, but the trick did seem to put the characters’ speech on the same level as their actions, somehow reminding me of an old man wagging his finger and saying “do as I say, not as I do.” Which of course was a constant thread throughout the book. I’m glad I don’t have to write a paper on it, though.

Trackbacks & Pings

  1. Red Pop Redux at Green Gabbro on 30 Jun 2006 at 8:40 pm

    […] Got a very urgent-sounding query in my email box today asking after Wildwood Red Pop, presumably stemming from my old desperate search for fellow Red Pop afficionados. So after a quick look through the querier’s web site, which offers purportedly humorous videos I was too lazy to download, I stumbled onto Red Pop the wacky Japanese design site, which offers such useful icons as “girly item,” “love life” and “simple.” Now my head hurts. […]


  1. betsy wrote:

    faygo red pop. i used to live in michigan, where faygo is all over the place, but now i live in minnesota, where faygo is only available at hot topic.
    no, really.
    also, it’s available over the internet.
    redpop is still fabulous if you are in an eleven year old sort of mood, otherwise it is too sweet. but rock’n’rye is still good.

  2. true wrote:
    gl….u wouldn’t happen 2 know where i can git some red jelly named rex’s red jelly???
    my addy is prayerworks93706 [@]

  3. charles wrote:

    Does anyone know where I can get some rex jelly? or the recipe for it.

  4. Melonman wrote:

    Red Pop was a soda that was made by Wildwood. It was called Wildwood Red Pop here in Minnesota. It was a strawberry/cherry soda that was the next best thing to goulash at a Lutheran church supper! Ja, sure, you betcha!

  5. jim wrote:

    please let me know if any REX JELLY was found and where i can get some of it or even a picture. thanks much! jim

  6. gloria wrote:

    yes we have found a recipe for as close as you can get for rex jelly in good old

  7. gloria wrote:

    havent tried it yet but going to soon will post afterwards and let you know,best jelly ever made

  8. Belle wrote:

    i was woondering where i could get the recipe for REX JELLY.

  9. gloria wrote:

    yes i have a recipe for rex jelly,
    2 pkgs. of raspberry kool aid
    4 cups water
    1 pkg of sure jell or any pectin
    5 cups sugar
    1 tsp. lemon juice[optional]
    mix kool aid,water,and sure jell.bring to boil,add sugar bring back to boil and boilat least 1 full minute.skim off foam,pour into hjalf pint jars and seal wipe tops off before you seal

  10. Rochelle wrote:

    Rex Jelly!! Can this be made with any and all kool aids flavorings?

  11. Rochelle wrote:

    Both of these are still sold on the west coast in most grocery stores.

  12. Rochelle wrote:

    Does anyone have a copy of the PET Milk recipe for Princess pie which was popular in the 50’s? It was made with evaporated milk frozen and whipped with fruit cocktail in it — graham cracker crust or pre baked.

  13. gMac wrote:

    Not sure if this is what you folks are looking for, but I ran across this while surfing and then I ran across you.

  14. joni wrote:

    my kids wouldn’t believe me that there ever was such a thing as good as red pop. I couldnt even find anybody around here to verify it for me.

  15. gregory scott wrote:

    I live in los angeles now but went i reture to my home town of flint,michigan (i have been gone for oven 14 years) i drink a faygo red pop and it was so good that i drink four more of then so my question is ware are they sold out here in los angeles,calif.

    we will have a l.a. detriot get together in the month of july for peoples who are from michigan flint,detriot,etc

  16. JOHN wrote:

    I have been on a mission to find all of the wildwood sodas. I am fortunate though to find a store that carries wildwood red pop here in Indiana

  17. true wrote:

    I FOUND IT !!!! real rex jelly
    mama j’s cabin wooo hooo …gl e1
    happy shopping

  18. chad wrote:

    What store in Indiana can I get wildwood red pop?

  19. Lucas wrote:

    I lived in Iowa Falls, and we used to by Hy-Vee’s Red Pop by the THREE LITER BOTTLE. Since most of my circle of friends didn’t bother with consuming alcoholic beverages, we stuck with the Red Pop, and have mourned the loss of the fanstic liquid for several years now.

  20. Keonyn wrote:

    Growing up here in Minnesota, I know all about Wildwood Red Pop. When I was younger my friends and I were addicted to the stuff. My parents used to always buy the cheaper off brands of soda, which was usually a bad thing. But when Red Pop came around, that was all we drank until it disappeared from the shelves.

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