Just when you thought the outrage had calmed, Four Loko is implicated in a pair of teenage deaths in California. Aaron Saenz, 15, and Chelsea Taylor, 16, were found dead in a Huntington Beach apartment, an empty can of the highly caffeinated, very alcoholic Four Loko close by. Police are saying the pair died from “drug- and alcohol-related causes,” though results of the autopsies have not been released. Parents groups and screenwriters must already be furiously working.
Via the Los Angeles Times, the story gets all the more cinematic and awful when it comes to the discovery of the bodies:
Apartment managers called police Friday after spotting the teens through an apartment window, but they did not know if the two were dead or alive, Reinhart said, according to the Hungtington Beach Independent.
Now, more than likely, one Four Loko did not simultaneously kill two teenagers, and yet, because it fits with a larger narrative, the Loko will be mentioned endlessly with regards to the tragedy. The MTV Skins link is inevitable too, since deaths of the young, with drugs and alcohol connected, are media catnip. To many minds, however abhorrent it may seem, there’s an allure and the option to romanticize these regrettable situations. Think about it:
There is thy gold, worse poison to men’s souls,
Doing more murders in this loathsome world,
Than these poor compounds that thou mayst not sell.
I sell thee poison; thou hast sold me none.
Farewell: buy food, and get thyself in flesh.
Come, cordial and not poison, go with me
To Juliet’s grave; for there must I use thee.