Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Death Watch: Robert Cade

Dr. Robert Cade invented Gatorade. And, yes, I think that may rhyme. While there has always been debate as to whether Gatorade is more effective than water at rehydrating participants in strenuous activity, there is no doubt drinking Gatorade is better than drinking nothing at all.

Gatorade is also used to bathe victorious NFL coaches, and acts as an excellent morning-after hangover mollifier. On the flipside, while it never really caught on, you could do a lot worse than a Lemon Ice Gatorade and vodka.

But the key to Gatorade's multi-billion dollar ubiquity is not so much that it nourishes the sweaty and the drunk. It is because you don't need to be either to enjoy the taste of flavored sugar water.

Robert Cade admits he never dreamed the drink he invented in 1965 to help University of Florida football players overcome Florida's swampy heat would ever be purchased by regular consumers.

Do the dead dream? Nobody knows. But we do know Dr. Robert Cade died today at the age of 80. And that his maddeningly simple innovation lives on.

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