Published: 2013 in Nature
Genre: science fiction short story
Length: 2 pages
Setting: present day Earth
Interest: It was included in the 2014 annual Campbellian Anthology.
Summary: It’s a very quick story of a guy talking to an alien about how Cherry Coke saved his life. He’s telling his life story as an alcoholic, and we get several interruptions by the alien to the effect of “was this when Cherry Coke saved your life?”
Final thoughts: A fun, quick story. For all its brevity, there’s several pieces of unexpectedness in the story. There’s even room for a twist at the end. I’m not going to spoil it – you can read the story in five minutes, so follow the link and read it yourself. Nothing too in-depth, but you can easily orient yourself in the setting and the story.
Title comes from: It’s the underlying theme to the story the narrator is telling the alien.
Reading challenges fulfilled: none since this was a short story