While waiting tables this past week, a guest’s order presented me with an interesting, ontological question: is lemonade juice? The conversation went as follows:

Guest: What all juices you got?

Me: Orange, grapefruit, cranberry, pineapple, and tomato juice.

Guest: Don’t you got lemonade?

Me: Well yes, we do have pink lemonade.

Guest: Den why didn’t you say dat when I axed what all juices you got?

Maybe I’m wrong, but if something comes out of a soda fountain, I don’t consider it “juice”.  It may be a drink, but it’s not juice. By Webster’s definition, juice is “the extractable fluid contents of cells or tissues.”  Mmm, tasty.  Now it’s true that lemonade is made from liquid that naturally occurs within a lemon. But pure lemon juice is only made drinkable by adding sugar and water. So the question becomes, does the addition of foreign materials to a fruit’s “extracted fluid” automatically disqualify it as juice? Or, in the parlance of my guests, if you add shit to it, is it still “juice” or is it just “drink”?

What do you think?