The Truth Behind Fruit Loops & Coca Cola

The Truth Behind the Urban Legend

Syndicon East '96

Yes, I am THAT catsimmie. The above picture is proof of the Urban Legend, now here's the story. I also know the photo looks like crap. I'm trying to find it again through all my stuff to rescan it, but just deal.

Syndicon East '96 took place in May 9 - 12, 1996 in Baltimore, Maryland. Em and I drove up from Smithfield, North Carolina and stayed at the Motel 6 several miles away.

Well on Saturday morning, they had several acutions for charity. One of the prizes was breakfast with Jim Byrnes. A LOT of people wanted this. Bids were going crazy. Finally a group of about 15 or 20 of us, pooled our money together and won. I think the amount was around $1500. Well that pretty much blew my entire budget, but I felt it was worth it!

So the next morning when it's time to have breakfast, I was nervous. For those who don't know, I was anorexic & bulimic at the time. I had had the fortunate experience of passing out the day before. Why fortunate? Well it just happened to be in the same room Peter was in, and I got to see his medical training first hand. Ok it was basic First Aid but still.

Back to the point. So all of us are waiting for Jim to arrive. He had been out with the rest of the cast the night before at the bar. We figured it would probably turn in to lunch instead of breakfast. We all waited for the guest of honor before ordering food. Most everyone was going to have the buffet anyway. So Jim finally arrives.

The waitress came by and took everyone's order. Of course I was the last to oder. I barely had any money left, plus I so did not want to eat a lot because I didn't want to have to spend most of our last day puking it up.. So I just asked for a bowl of cereal and another coke. Jim looked confused.

"Is that all you're eating? You don't want anything else? This meal's on me." And I guess he had heard about the day before and said "We wouldn't want you passing out again on the last day no would we?"

OK I was floored right there. We were suppose to be treating him! I smiled. "No, I'll just have a thing of Fruit Loops and Coca Cola please."

Jim smiled and shook his head. "If that's what she wants, then Fruit Loops and Coke it is. And bring me some too."

OK at this point, I was trying to figure out how to get under the table and stay there! It was even worse when he came back from the buffet and said "So do you put the coke on the cereal instead of milk?"

OK that was not my intention. I like my cereal dry. Laughing I said "Hadn't thought about it really. Why should I try it?"

Everyone laughed. Jim got an evil look in his eyes. He was just daring me to do it. "Why not, I've had worse. Go for it."

OK, Jim Byrnes has just dared you to do something. How can you refuse. So I did it. The look on his face when I took that first bite was priceless. What happened next shocked everyone. He did the same thing! But after his first bite he said "Next time, I think I'll go with the milk."

Breakfast went smoothly after that. It was rushed because other things were due to start happening and Jim was already running late. At the end, everyone wanted to get a quick group picture. Jim agreed and as we were all leaving he said "Hey what about a picture with the Fruit Loops?"

So not only did we take the above pic, he took the box, asked for a marker and autographed it!

Later that afternoon was the Q & A. Someone went to the Mic and asked Jim something like "So what's you're most memorable con moment of any of the ones you've been too?" Peter sitting next to him on stage said "Yeah Jim, wouldn't that have been breakfast this morning?"

I wanted to die. Jim started laughing and said "Oh it's definitely Fruit Loops and Coca Cola. I'll never forget that." He then went on to tell the story, while the cast got a huge laugh. Later, Em and I went on stage to have our pic taken with Elizabeth & Stan, and Stan said "You're not going to make me eat anything odd are you?" Elizabeth said "Being from the south, I know what Coke means to a Southerner, but you take it too far."

Victoria Concernt 1999

Three years later, I was living in the San Francisco Bay Area and my friend Louise and I went to Vancouver to do the "Highlander Tour" thing. Louise was the webmaster for the website which I helped her design. When Jim heard we were going to be in the area, he invited us to his show at a pub in Victoria.

We got up there and enjoyed a wonderful first set. During the band's break, Louise & I went outside so I could smoke. Guess who comes out? He gives me a hug and says "I couldn't believe when I saw you at the table. Did you bring your Fruit Loops and Coca Cola with you?" One of his band members asked "Fruit Loops is here? Where?"

If that was embarrassing enough, when the band resumed the second set, Jim wanted to introduce his "special guests" and went on to retell the story.

After the show, Jim invited Louise & I out for a late dinner and drinks. Louise agreed because she wanted to discuss some updates for the site. He had just appeared on the Raven and was getting ready to start working on Endgame. We had a blast and loved hearing his stories. Then he told us about the set joke!

Not too long before the show ended, practical jokes were a common occurrence. One day they were filming a scene where the table was set for breakfast. Being near to the end, apparently Adrian decided to have a little fun, and convinced the set decorators to make sure each place had a bowl of Fruit Loops with Coke in them. Everyone had a huge laugh and apparently (and thank god for me), this was left out of the blooper reals.

It's now 10 years after the fact and I still get harassed over this incident. Yes, I still have the autographed box, no I will never sell it, and I have no idea why this will forever live on as the weirdest thing in Highlander Convention history. So there's the truth to the Urban Legend. I even use to have the audio from the Q & A session, but no longer can find it. If I ever do, I'll post it here. Until then, may Fruit Loops & Coca Cola live on longer than the Immortals!