“For something to be funny, the audience has to be in a position to sense the truth of it. It has to be primed. Satire can crystallize what’s already in the air, but it can’t really put it there.”--Garry Trudeau
Thursday, June 13, 2013
Lo Hai Qu on Winning a Wine Blog Award
I was astonished to have received the Poodle Award for “Best Writing on a Wine Blog.” Actually, I
was astonished that there is a category “Best Writing on a Wine Blog.” And how did I get nominated? I think I share the feelings of the recent winner of the National Law Enforcement Officers Association “Best Bloodstain at a Crime Scene” Award. That is, nothing below the neck. And my intern, the lovely and just plain nasty Lo Hai Qu, also won an award for her insightful post, “The Death of Wine Critics.” While I chose not to give an acceptance speech, Lo Hai Qu asked if I would allow her to express her gratitude for her “Blog Post of the Year” Poodle. With some trepidation, here she is.
Oh, Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha…! I won, I won! When do I get my check? Awards come with prizes, right? Like don’t I get some kind of Riedel thing? A decanter, or a bong? I love those new Riedel bongs. And they’re right, the Maui Wowie is a LOT better out of their special Riedel Maui Wowie bong. OK, I didn’t compare it blind to a regular bong, but I was fuckin’ blind when I was done! Do I get one engraved? No? Nothing? What do you mean? Nothing? I win the stinking award and I get Nothing? Nada? Zero? Oh, crap, I got totally Jay Millered.
So what exactly do I get for winning the Wine Blog Award? The admiration of my peers? And what’s that worth? They’re wine bloggers. Wine bloggers are to writing what karaoke is to singing. Just a bunch of unattractive people faking it. So I’m supposed to be happy that they think I’m good? The hell with that. I want some money. Prizes are supposed to be about money. I mean, imagine you win Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes and the guy shows up at your house with balloons and a pat on the back? Now remember that I didn’t even get any fucking balloons! They get all these karaoke rejects up to Canada, charge them a bunch of money to drink Tannat (a grape that’s the same backwards, just like the Godforsaken country it’s from), rake in all this cash on the backs of the wine blog phenomenon, make the centerpiece of the week an awards ceremony, and what do they give the winners? They slip ‘em the ol’ Dr. Conti. “Hey, you won an Award! I swear to God it’s real.” Like we’re a bunch of wine collecting rubes, like we don’t know our Kochs from our buttholes. Sad thing is, they might be right.
By the way, Rudy, if you’re reading this, call me. I think you’re kinda cute. I love an Indonesian in handcuffs.
Me and my friends laughed like crazy at the winners of the Wine Blog Awards (that fart water HoseMaster likes to call them the Poodles—which has caught on like open sores, so congrats on that). So Best Overall Wine Blog is Terroirist? Really. It’s just a bunch of links. I know, maybe next year Reader’s Digest will win the Nobel Prize for Literature! That makes the same sense. Oh, I hear the phone book is up for a Pulitzer. Great plot, but I thought it had too many characters.
And then The Journey of Jordan is the best winery blog. This is too funny. Me and my friends thought for sure that Ridge dude would win, but you can’t beat a video parody of “Gangnam Style” that proves once and for all that wineries only hire white people who dance like Curley Howard with a load in his pants with poetry explications. And isn’t there a rule that if you use the word “journey” in a wine blog you’re officially Out of Original Ideas? Everything these days is a stupid journey. I’ve got an idea. Instead of a journey to discover wine, why not take a journey to somewhere where no one can hear you?
Every year, me and my friends can’t wait until the Best New Wine Blog is announced. It’s the Wine Blog Awards equivalent of our favorite part of the Academy Awards broadcast—the Death Montage. So the one this year is a bunch of winemaker interviews. That’s it. A bunch of winemaker interviews, which, by definition, are autopsy reports, with the same questions for every interview. Awesome. So the winner of the Best New Wine Blog wrote all of sixteen questions. Wow, I haven’t been this riveted since the last time I took the written test at the DMV. If you like the insight and wisdom of the IRS Form 1040, this is the blog for you! But you know what, and this kinda sucks, it just might actually be the best new wine blog. I like to read it with Bette Midler singing “Wind Beneath My Wings” in the background while pretending all the winemakers interviewed are dead.
And what’s with that NothingsBiggerThanMyHead guy? He reviews more crap than than a septic tank repairman. He won again for Longest Reviews on a Wine Blog. Me and my friends have wine tastings and we read his reviews outloud and every time he uses a funny descriptor, the drunkest one has to act it out. It’s a great party game! So like last time I got “penetrating gunflint” and I sat funny for a week. My friend got “a squeeze of green apple” but she was so drunk she totally let one rip. Love this guy. I'd totally do him just to read the review. "Musk, cigarette butt and My Little Pony Lubricant and Depilatory." Act that out.
OK, so I’m pretty buzzed right now. So I’m just gonna say that the stupidest winner was HoseMaster of Wine™ for Best Writing on a Wine Blog. Same tired old shit he’s been saying for five years, and he wins? You know what it is, you know why he won, don’t you? Everybody hates wine blogs now. It’s just a fucking backlash. Me and my Millennial friends hate them, that’s for sure. All these old people blathering on about wine. Blah blah blah blah, I was at this tasting with World’s Most Famous Winemaker, blah blah blah blah, I kissed his winemaking ass, blah blah blah, I had a vertical of his winemaker throb juice, blah blah blah, join me on my journey to discover wine, blah blah blah, I just love the wines of Peru and the Perumaniacs are the loveliest people, blah blah blah… So me and my friends voted for the HoseMaster, not because he’s the Best Writer, crap, he couldn’t write for Bazooka Joe comics, but because we hate wine blogs and Wine Blog Awards. Like if you hated baseball you’d vote Barry Bonds into the Hall of Fame. Same thing. Or if you hate truth you voted for Michelle Bachmann. Another same thing. So that’s why he won, the dick. Everybody knows it. Except him, he thinks he’s so funny.
I’m just hoping next year at the Wine Blog Awards he’s part of the Death Montage. Hell, he won, I guess he already was.
After 19 years as a Sommelier in Los Angeles, twice named Sommelier of the Year by the Southern California Restaurant Writers' Association, I moved to Sonoma County to explore the other aspects of the wine business. I've spent, OK wasted, 35 years learning about and teaching about and swallowing wine. I am also a judge at the Sonoma Harvest Fair, San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition and the San Francisco International Wine Competition--so I can spit like a rabid llama. I know more about wine than David Sedaris and I'm funnier than James Laube. Stay tuned for an informed but jaded view of everything wine and everything else.
What the Critics Are Saying About HoseMaster of Wine
"If you want a great hoot and howl moment or two...go read the HoseMaster's year-end reflections...that guy is without a doubt the funniest SOB in the blog-world...and thank him for having the brains and balls to target his laser of laughter on anybody...HoseMaster for President...HoseMaster for Blogger of the Year...although he would be the first to say the bar is so damn low for that award, he should win it every year..." --Robert Parker
"...With sometimes crude analogies and occasional droppings of f-bombs, Washam cleverly uses satire to expose the underbelly of the wine business. It's often hilarious stuff as long as you're not the one being lampooned. Washam takes no prisoners in skewering all that is silly, stupid, frustrating and pretentious about wine, and his favorite targets are other bloggers and writers. No one is immune."
--Linda Murphy in "Vineyard and Winery Management"
"No one is immune from California sommelier and wine judge Ron Washam's skewering. He polishes that skewer with boundless enthusiasm and acuity." --JancisRobinson.com
"As serious as the world of wine is, it does allow time for humor. Each Monday and Thursday, Ron Washam customarily posts a commentary on his needling wine blog HoseMaster of Wine. Washam, a former sommelier and comedy writer – he might say they are closely related – is the most opinionated, humorous and ribald observer in the wine world. His body of work is irreverent and remorseless. It’s almost always satire and parody, though he occasionally drifts into straight commentary, sometimes even with tasting notes. This past year, one of his posts was named the best of the year in the Wine Blog Awards. His success has spawned several imitations, which in their awkwardness show just how difficult satire is."
--Mike Dunne, Sacramento Bee
Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/2014/01/21/6089630/dunne-on-wine-wine-blogs-and-bloggers.html#storylink=cpy
"Please let this guy write the scripts for Saturday Night Live which has gotten so lame...his newest "wisdom" is worth an Emmy....I wonder if he is the genius behind all those Hitler/Parker,etc. clips? No one else is remotely as funny or as talented.And the wine world sure needs someone to poke fun at all the nonsense and phoney/baloney unsufferable crap out there."
"Washam uses his own blog, HoseMaster of Wine, to skewer the industry in general and wine blogs in particular. If your mouse scoots to your browser's close box while reading a wine blog, Washam may be the blogger for you."
--San Francisco Chronicle
"Ron Washam, former sommelier, is easily the most bitingly funny blogger/wine writer that we have ever come across. He is an equal opportunity crusader who pillories big wineries and amateur bloggers alike, as well as everything and everyone in between...One needs a sense of humor and a tolerance for earthiness to enjoy reading The Hosemaster. We must have both because this guy deserves a wider audience, in our humble opinion." --Connoisseurs' Guide to California Wine
"In my opinion, and that of many others, his blog is one of the best. And in terms of satirical or parodic wine blogs, it has no peer. Ron’s alert eye catches every pretense and skewers it with laugh out loud mercilessness."
"This site should carry a warning label. It's sort of a Dave Barry/George Carlin approach to wine. The Hosemaster (real name Ron Washam) skewers fellow bloggers and industry savants with glee, while offering hilarious wine guides such as his Honest Guide to Grapes..."
--Paul Gregutt, Seattle Times
"Washam is a skilled wine judge (I have judged with him) who is willing to judge wine double blind, in public. To my knowledge, Parker does not do this and never has. So Ron's credentials are in place, and so is his sense of the absurd."
--Dan Berger, VintageExperiences
"...I consider Ron a very talented writer and I’ve long been an admirer of his scathing wit..."
"And if any free sites think they can conquer the world, there’s always the Hosemaster to take ‘em down a notch."
--Tyler Colman "Dr. Vino"
"Those of you who know Ron either love or hate him, because he throws jabs like a punch drunk boxer, and we’re all in the firing line. He’ll throw them if he hates you, and he’ll throw them if he loves you. He’s a satirist of exceptional quality."
--Jo Diaz "Juicy Tales by Jo Diaz"
"I must say you are an idiot. I've never liked you. I have no idea why people find you funny."
--Reign of Terroir
Robert (Joseph) was/is funny unlike HoseMaster who wasn't/isn't.