Monday, June 25, 2012
Wine Blogging: An Obituary
“I am a blogger. But I am not a blogger. Blogging is well and truly alive. But blogging is dead.”--Jamie Goode, wineanorak.com
“She’s my sister. (slap) She’s my daughter.”—“Chinatown”
Seems like you’re screwed either way.
Wine Blogging (2004-2012)
I first met Wine Blogging in 2008. My mother had died the year before. Or was it my sister? Or was it my mother? Though she was well and truly alive. Until she died. She would have hated Wine Blogging, and it’s a blessing that she didn’t live to see us become involved. She loved the English language with a passion most people reserve for involuntary manslaughter. Wine Blogging had little regard for language, and even less for grammar and punctuation. Wine Blogging overflowed with ridiculously ornate descriptions of wine, so ornate they were bigger than your fucking head, so ornate they made the Sistine Chapel look like a crummy tasting room with especially powerful crackers. At the same time, Wine Blogging could be mindlessly dull, emptier than a Food and Wine feature, more meaningless than a Double Gold Medal from the Temecula Wine Competition and Bachelorette Party. For years, Wine Blogging held the English language in its soundproof basement, bound and gagged and subjected to every imaginable torture, including waterboarding and reading Vornography out loud. It’s still there, screaming hopelessly in vain to be rescued. But Wine Blogging won’t let language die. That would be too easy. Yet now Wine Blogging is dead. And Wine Blogging is well and truly alive. Alive enough to really fuck up language, anyway.
At first, I had a soft spot for Wine Blogging, sort of like a bruise on a fresh peach, or that spot on the back of a newborn’s skull you sort of want to see how far your finger will go in before something bad happens. I took to Wine Blogging. But, you know, when you start a new relationship, you inherit their friends as well. I was fine with Wine Blogging, but Wine Blogging’s friends were insufferable. God, the endless yammering. Together, just the two of us, Wine Blogging and I had a lot of laughs. And we didn’t laugh at all. But we laughed a lot. Primarily, at the expense of Wine Blogging’s other buddies. Those humorless and self-absorbed knob jobs. Get them all together in a room and they’d yap endlessly about the 100 Point Scale, like so many Sean Hannitys wishing that just talking about something without actually knowing what you’re talking about will just make it go away. Or they’d talk about natural wines in reverent tones usually reserved for their favorite episodes of “Star Trek,” or the day they met Alice Feiring on Match.com. But you start a conversation in a roomful of humans and nearly every one will eventually talk about his favorite subject at length and in great detail—himself. His wine journey—convinced he’s goddam Odysseus when he’s really Gilligan and wants to take you on a three-hour tour, a three-hour tour. His opinions about wines that were sent to him gratis by marketing people, thus reinforcing his sense of self-importance, and how surprisingly good they are compared to the crap he usually drinks—fascinating and useful talk. Makes you want to rush out and buy everything recommended from a sudden desire to drink yourself to death. Which may be the motive for wineries to send wines to those crap peddlers in the first place—to see their livers shut down. And yet to live forever. Live forever talking about themselves. Some in the third person, because the first two were so stupid.
Wine Blogging and I had a tempestuous relationship. We loved each other. And then we hated each other. Maybe it was just for the makeup sex, though, finally, I was told I wasn’t supposed to wear makeup. When we loved each other, there was nothing about Wine Blogging I didn’t like. Sure, Wine Blogging could be demanding, and there were always dozens of snide comments. Wine Blogging was always inseparable from snide comments. They went together like Wine Blog Awards and mediocrity, like, like Phillipe Melka and overpriced Cabs. And for a while I could stand all of that, because the rewards of embracing Wine Blogging seemed so great. And then they didn’t. And I hated Wine Blogging. But now Wine Blogging is dead. But I am well and truly alive. At least I was when I wrote this. Can you be sure I’m still alive now, when you’re reading it? And what if there are no readers, I used to ask Wine Blogging, how do you know you’re alive? Do you care? Not if you’re dead you don’t care. Ask Robert Parker.
When I got the Tweet that Wine Blogging was dead, I felt numb, like your tongue after judging Petite Sirahs, like your brain after listening to an M.S. speak, like your left arm after Marvin Shanken falls asleep cuddled up next to you after a dreamy night of playing “Hide the Havana.” Did this mean I was finally through with that bastard Wine Blogging? Or would it mean that I’d never be through with Wine Blogging? I feared both outcomes. A death so young can have ripple effects that last forever. Eight years old. Wine
Blogging was only eight years old, and now Wine Blogging was dead. And it was well and truly alive. But eight years is not a bad life span for a Poodle, a bitch. Or was it my sister? Or my mother?
Rest in Peace, Wine Blogging. I’m not surprised by your death, old friend. You were always in poor health, and had neither the skills nor the money to get healthy. You died a Goode death.
I’ll meet you where you went to die. In Portland. In August. But I won't be there.