In a totally unscientific poll that even produced three identical responses from the same e-mailer, it appears the flying public will be absolutely no help to US Airways when it comes to choosing Pepsi or Coke.
The carrier, which merged with America West Airlines in September, has to decide which beverages it will serve on its flights. America West has Pepsi and Budweiser. US Airways offers Coca-Cola and its brand of beer is Miller.
An online Tribune poll revealed a virtual dead heat in the great Coke versus Pepsi debate.
Of the 346 votes cast, 50.87 percent took Coke and 49.13 percent went with Pepsi. Pepsi has demanded a recount.
Because it’s an issue mired in syrup, we asked readers to weigh in via e-mail. The newspaper was kind enough to give my computer address to the masses. Once again, the poll didn’t really tell anybody anything.
There were 37 responses tallied: 16 for Coke or Diet Coke, 15 for Pepsi or Diet Pepsi, three for both, two for Dr Pepper or Diet Dr Pepper and a single vote for Sam’s Club soda. The survey attracted attention far and wide.
Bill Blum Jr., a Rochester, N.Y. US Air employee wrote "Although I have served Coke for the past 18 years, I personally prefer Pepsi. I hope we adopt AWA’s brands!"
Scottsdale’s Matt Chew said it ought to be Coke. "I fly Am West a lot and this has been bugging me ever since they began. Certainly hope they change."
Timothy Lee of Casa Grande insists Coke products are the best.
"There is NO substitute for Diet Coke," he writes. "None. In fact, when offered a Diet Pepsi alternative, I always say, ‘No thanks, I’ll take water, please!’ "
Denise Carney said while she prefers Pepsi, she shouldn’t have to choose. "Why can’t you serve both kinds of soda and both kinds of beer? What’s the big deal????"
It was a big deal to Alita Arnold. She sent three notes in the span of 12 minutes to say the carrier ought to go with Pepsi and Bud. She was a bit hostile about the choice.
"Why go with what a loser airline’s used," she wrote in the first e-mail. "America West is a winner and we should keep what they use NOT what a loser/bankrupt airline used."
Brad Hatch’s e-mail said Pepsi, about 500 times. Ryan F. rejected both major parties. "I don’t care which cola is chosen by US Airways, but I do care which supplier is chosen," he said. "The one that can provide Dr Pepper."
Karla Dent said she and her daughter refuse when offered Pepsi. "We’d rather NOT DRINK anything as to drink a yucky Pepsi!," she screamed in her e-mail. We are COKE drinkers in this house! My best friend in Cincinnati is also a COKE drinker. I choose where I eat and drive through by where I can get a COKE with my meal. If I go to Taco Bell, I get iced tea . . . NEVER Pepsi!"
Barbara Mohney said serving both could please all of the people all of the time.
"One of the reasons I choose to fly American West was the fact they serve Pepsi and not Coke," she wrote. "Coke is everywhere. I am always surprised when I can get Pepsi at any eatery. It is my favorite cola. Maybe US Air could serve both? That would be a good compromise."