IN FOCUS: Passion Pop

Back before you hid your lack of alcoholic discernability behind a bottle of $14 rosé, you had Passion Pop – a sparkling alcoholic grape drink that for better or worse would go on to define your youthful misadventure.

You never forget your first time. You had lied to your parents and told them that you were going to Hoyts with your friends. $20 richer, you begged your older sibling to do you a solid and buy you some booze.

After the older sibling tax, all you were left with was 2 bottles of original Passion Pop. Lord have mercy on your soul because your stomach lining surely won’t. 

The party was pumping. Darude – Sandstorm blared through a small CD player as you got to work on your first lukewarm bottle of Pop. After one bottle of the carbonated peasantry, you were sloppier than an undercooked omelette.

At this point, you tried your first ciggy and proceeded to cough your ring up like Sonic the Hedgehog in an emphysema ward. Good times.

Unfortunately, your parents were called and your great ruse was discovered when you sprayed the backseat of their car with your stomach lining.

While they told you this was the first time you had “really” let them down, they were probably lying to you. Your unimpressive report cards and general lack of any talent shanked them a lot deeper. I digress.

Years passed but maturity dwindled and by the age of 18 you were still hooked on the stuff. As each weekend rolled around you would find yourself purchasing more bottles of the Pop.

It probably wasn’t your first choice, but that manager at Dotti wasn’t giving you shifts, and frankly, you were broke. So $5 a bottle was worth a hangover that felt like Mr Ed had gone clop-happy on your head. 

Whether you got to Harbourside or not after a couple of bottles of Passion Pop was a complete lottery. Some nights you would, and other nights you would find yourself vomiting on the chode of some Drazic-looking wannabe that you liked because he could do a pretty gnar kickflip.

That bitter reflux of misspent youth haunts you. Some say that every time you find yourself hooking up with another loser you can feel it tingle the back of your throat.

That’s Passion Pop’s gift to you. A kind of spidey sense for shambolic piss-heads, where if your life trajectory veers off track again, you are alerted.

So bottoms up. You are definitely going to need that sense.

Documenting the Human Zoo is thirsty work, so if you enjoyed what you read how about buying Belle a beer, ay?