If Mayor Bloomberg's proposed soda ban becomes law, carbonation-starved New Yorkers can always escape to London.
London Mayor Boris Johnson was a guest on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart Monday, where-- after some goading by Stewart-- he poked fun at Bloomberg's ban, saying, "What I will say is that refugees from the soda tyranny in New York will have sanctuary in London." He then added, "I don't want to sound jingoistic, but if you do wish to come and drink soda from a 16 ounce pot, come to London. Bring your huddled masses yearning to break free."
It was the second time Johnson made a jab at New York during his visit. In a WNYC radio interview Monday, he said New York's forthcoming bike share program will "civilize the place."
"There’s nothing more immediately redolent of a village than loads of people wobbling around on bicycles,” he said. Johnson was a big proponent of London's popular bike share program. Londoners, in fact, commonly call the public rides "Boris Bikes."
Meanwhile Tuesday morning, Bloomberg's soda ban is scheduled to be officially submitted to the city's board of health, the Associated Press reports. The ban would prohibit the sales of sodas over 16 ounces at city restaurants, theaters, sports venues, and street carts.
The proposal is a divisive one among New Yorkers. A recent NY1-Marist poll found 42 percent of New Yorkers praising the soda ban, with 53 percent saying it's a bad idea.
A small group of demonstrators gathered at City Hall Monday to support the mayor's proposal.
"This is a health issue,” demonstrator Kathy Dolgin of the group Energy Up told CBS. “It’s bankrupting our country, our city. We have got to now stand up for our mayor, stand up for our health department, go into the neighborhoods and share the information that sugar is like a drug for millions of people.”
The ban also got the New Yorker cover treatment this week. The pulp fiction-inspired cover by Owen Smith features two young lovers being caught drinking a large soda in an alleyway. "Making things criminal that you wouldn’t necessarily think of as a crime, to me it’s just ‘crime fiction,’ and that’s sort of a pulp idea," Smith told Gothamist.