I've always ordered beverages one simple way: "A Coke, please."
Lately, though, this hasn't seemed to work. Waitresses now often respond, "I'm sorry, we don't have Coke. We have Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, Dr. Pepper, Mr. Pibb."
Tired of listening to the long list of soft drinks, I thought I'd make life easier. So one day I simply asked the snack bar clerk at a movie theater for a "dark, carbonated beverage."
The young man behind the counter chuckled and asked, "Sir, would you like a cylindrical plastic sucking device with that?"