#PopTop May 6

Coach4aday is a daily blog that began in 2014. The posts are mostly shared ideas to help people grow and learn. You can follow the blog with one of the like buttons found on top left of Coach4aday website.

In 2020 some Coach4aday posts will feature lessons learned by completing, planning, and experiencing 30 day challenges. The challenges include physical, mental, spiritual, and emotional.

Pop Top

I recently saw a friend post that they were bummed because a scheduled Jimmy Buffet Concert had been rescheduled. Mr. Buffet will be performing concerts in North and South Carolina from June 6-13, 2020.

Jimmy Buffet’s signature song just may be Margaritaville a song he recorded in 1977.

One part of the lyrics to that song goes like this

I blew out my flip flop,
Stepped on a pop top;
Cut my heel, had to cruise on back home.

From 1965 to 1975 a POP TOP came off a can and more often than not found its way on the ground. Photo below is what a POP TOP looked like back then.

beer-cans (2)

As you get older you try to explain to younger people simple changes that have occurred in your life time. I encountered that last week talking about my first taste of beer. To get that taste I opened a canned beer that did not have a POP TOP.

One hot summer day in the mid 1960’s my dad just finished cutting the grass and was sitting on our back porch steps. He asked me to go open a can a beer and bring it to him. I grabbed my mom’s avocado green opener and popped open his flat top can of Schaeffer Beer.

avocado-green-can-opener (2)


The POP TOP on drink cans did not occur mainstream until the late 1960’s. That fact appears to be mind boggling to many of the craft beer millennials I call friends.

Even though canned foods date back to 1813, the first successful attempt to put beer in a can wasn’t accomplished until 1935 and was the offspring of a partnership between the American Can Company and the New Jersey-based Gottfried Krueger Brewing Company.

Less than two years before that, the American Can Company managed to overcome two challenges which, until then, had precluded them from canning beer—the company successfully produced cans strong enough to hold the pressurized carbonated beverage and “keglined” the inside of the cans with a special coating that prevented any metallic taste from flavoring the beer.

Krueger’s Finest Beer, Krueger’s Cream Ale and Krueger’s Special Beer (all at 3.2 percent ABV—the highest legal level for beer at the time) became the first beers canned and about 4,000 were imbibed by the lucky few in Richmond, Virginia.

Ever wonder how steel cans got the name “tin cans”?

Though today beer cans are made from aluminum, those early cans were constructed out of heavy gauged steel coated with a thin layer of tin to prevent rusting. This tinning of steel cans became so ubiquitous that even today aluminum cans are still sometimes called “tin cans.”

While opening a can of beer these days is as simple as flipping a tab, original flat top beer cans required a device called a “church key” or my mom’s prized avocado green can opener in order to access the brew inside. The first can beers had printed instructions on the can on how to open.

Using a can opener, an imbiber (inserted word to impress John Tanner) would puncture a triangular hole at the top of the beer from which he/she would drink, in addition to puncturing a smaller hole on the opposite side to let air into the can and facilitate the free flow of beer.

beer-cans (3)

Very few beer and soda cans had any type of POP TOPS until we got to the 1960’s. In 1975 the danger of the POP TOP tab you could throw down was replaced by the tab we see on today’s cans.

beer-cans (4)

I would tell you more about POP TOPS but

I am on my front porch swing
Smell those shrimp they’re beginnin’ to boil



One comment

  1. A splendid and felicitous election of expression! Formidable!

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