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Making a Soda Geyser

It’s the anticipation. This one.

And the unknown.

And the forty-six questions that trip out of their mouths when you show up with a jug of Diet Coke from Wal-Mart and wave a pack of Mentos in the air from the gas station.

“What’s gonna happen?” they want to know. “Are we going to explode something? What’s a Mento? If it explodes, do we run? Which way do we run? Can I touch a Mento? Can I put my finger…Can I taste…Who’s gonna…”

It’ll take your breath away.

As will the child hefting the pop you just set down and giving it a good shake.

Well. We’re not going to explode anything. But we are going watch the carbon dioxide in the Coke bottle make a jail break.

And to do that, we need just three things. Diet Coke. Mentos…

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And a little paper tube to hold our Mentos.

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Which can be made with a child’s previous art work and held together with a piece of tape.

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Here we are loading our tube with the Mentos…

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And keeping the bottom pinched, so none escape early.

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The reason we even bother with the tube is so that all the Mentos can be dropped into the Coke at the same time.

Here we’re just folding the sides in on the bottom is so that none of the candies slip in by themselves before we get a chance to turn the tube upright.

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When ready, dump.

And scatter.

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And pretend briefly that you’re at Yellowstone and not in your own back yard.

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You are in your own back yard.

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And nothing tells you that more than the near-empty coke bottle…

And the sticky kids sprinting to the middle of the yard with forty-six more questions.

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