Monday, April 14, 2014

The New Wine Fairy Tales: The Magic Sommelier

Once there was a poor farmer whose only luck in life was that he had three lovely daughters. None of the three looked the least bit like him, which was probably for the best. One daughter had beautiful blonde hair like spun gold, one had raven tresses and almond shaped eyes, while the third daughter was fair-skinned, with hair the color of iron-rich soil. The poor farmer never gave a second thought to how little his daughters looked like him. The poor farmer’s wife had told him that each girl had been conceived under a magic spell from the evil wizard, Viagra. “Just another hard luck story,” the poor farmer’s wife said, “the emphasis on ‘luck’ and ‘hard.’” The poor farmer loved each of his daughters very much.

One day the poor farmer was plowing his field when his plow struck something hard and metallic under the soil.

“What the fuck was that?” said the poor farmer’s draft horse, an emaciated Clydesdale named Pferdie. The “P” was silent, like in sand.

The poor farmer bent down to look, and, there, just barely glinting in the morning sunlight, he could see something made of silver. Using his hands to uncover the buried object, the poor farmer finally revealed a silver tastevin, which he held up for his draft horse to see.

“Oh, Pferdie, it’s just a piece of crap. Shiny, but basically useless. Looks like a diaphragm for Lettie Teague.” What kind of poor fucking farmer reads WSJ? Pretty much every kind.

Before the poor farmer cast the tastevin aside, he couldn’t resist taking out his handkerchief and giving it a quick polish. The poor farmer rubbed and rubbed the tastevin. Before long, after only a handful of strokes, right there in the middle of his barren field, a Magic Sommelier appeared.

“Yikes,” the poor farmer exclaimed, “where did you come from?”

“You summoned me,” the Magic Sommelier said. “I’m a Magic Sommelier. You know how we sommeliers love strokes. We live for strokes. What can I do for you?”

The poor farmer and Pferdie were dumbfounded. What was a sommelier doing in their field? Sure, the poor farmer had walked behind Pferdie for many years plowing his field, so the Magic Sommelier wasn’t the first horse’s ass he’d seen. Yet it was still rather an odd start to the day.

“I’m not sure what you mean, Magic Sommelier. I don’t think there’s anything you can do for me.”

“I have the power, poor farmer, to grant you three wishes. But I warn you, you summoned a sommelier, you should be careful what you wish for.”

The poor farmer immediately thought about his three beautiful and beloved daughters. Maybe a wish for each would be the answer. But as much as he loved his girls, the poor farmer had no idea what to wish for them. Did they want money, or fame, or eternal youth? The poor farmer certainly didn’t want to make a mistake with his three wishes. What if he wished the wrong things for his daughters? What would his wife say? No matter, he didn’t have to worry about her, his wife had said she’d be gone all day under the spell of the evil Viagra, which, she often said, felt like riding Pferdie up a mountain wearing only G-strings for her boobs. Thongs For the Mammaries.

“Hey, poor farmer,” the Magic Sommelier said, “I’ve got other tables. You want the three wishes, or not?”

“Yes,” the poor farmer said, “I do. But I don’t know what to wish for. I have three beautiful daughters, and I want to give them each one wish. Oh, Magic Sommelier, why don’t you choose the wishes for me? That’s what you do, right?”

“Very wise of you, poor farmer. I will pick the perfect wish to go with each of your lovely daughters. But first, of course, I must taste them. Only then will I be able to find the perfect complement for them. It’s how we roll.”

The poor farmer led the Magic Sommelier to his humble cottage, where his three gorgeous daughters were waiting. They’d never seen a Magic Sommelier before.

“What’s that weird thing your neck is holding up,” asked the blonde daughter.

“That’s called a tastevin.”

“No, I know what a tastevin is,” said the blonde, “I meant your face.”

“OK, girls,” the poor farmer said, “you are each to be granted one wish by this Magic Sommelier, but first he must taste each of you. Yeah, I know, creepy, but that’s how he rolls.”

The Magic Sommelier took the gorgeous blonde’s hand and led her into the poor farmer’s bedroom. It didn’t take long, he might be magic, but he’s still a sommelier, before the blonde daughter emerged from the poor farmer’s bedroom, a look of utter dismay on her beautiful face. “What a jackass,” she said. “He asked me if I had a twin sister. He said the best way to taste is to taste double-blonde.”

Next, the poor farmer sent in his raven-haired daughter to be tasted by the Magic Sommelier. She was in the poor farmer’s bedroom for quite a bit longer than her blonde sister. The rest of her family was getting nervous about the time it was taking. But then the sexy raven-haired daughter emerged from the bedroom. She looked satisfied, but her face was covered in mysterious markings. “I think he’s kind of weird,” she said. “He went back for several tastes, and then decorated my face. I’d better get a damned good wish.”

Finally, the radiant redhead daughter entered the poor farmer’s bedroom. She was in there a long time. Funny noises were heard, and the poor farmer feared the presence of the evil Viagra. But he, and his daughters, waited patiently, not wanting to interrupt for fear of breaking the spell and losing the three wishes. When the voluptuous redhead daughter emerged from the poor farmer’s bedroom, she was one hot mess. “I got a lot more than tasted,” the redhead said. “He also probed me with his Magic Meat Thief. Though, really, I was disappointed. More of a Magic Meat Eye-Dropper.”

Before long the Magic Sommelier appeared. He brushed himself off, wiped his face, and started for the door of the cottage.

“Where are you going?” said the poor farmer’s family, all at once. “What about our wishes?”

The Magic Sommelier turned to them with a look of disgust on his face.

“When you summon a Magic Sommelier,” he said, “there are three things you usually expect. Like your blonde daughter, you expect that I will push for a second when you’re not even done with the first. Like your raven-haired daughter, you expect huge mark-ups. And, third, like your redheaded daughter, you expect to get fucked.

“All of what you expected came true. Your three subliminal wishes have been granted.”

With that, the Magic Sommelier vanished. That’s how they roll.


Brian Baker said...


A classic guffaw to start my week...methinks you've been spending extra hours with Stephen Pastis, rat and pig...down at the pun farm.

Quizicat said...

Magic Meat Thief. I will have to remember that one.

Unknown said...

Sick and Twisted! Just the way I love the HoseMaster.

Ron Washam, HMW said...

I think all the puns, and puns are always stupid unless you thought of them yourself, are inspired by the old Fractured Fairy Tales from Rocky and Bullwinkle. They just seem to fit the style, whereas they don't fit the angry rant style. What I like is that all the animals in the New Wine Fairy Tales have foul mouths. That makes me laugh.

Just don't stick it in too many bungholes...Yeah, you could see that coming.

Really? Anonymous? OK, well, you have my anonymous thanks. Glad you liked it.

David Rossi said...

While there was no shortage of cringe-worthy moments in this story, my favorite line was the least racy- "The P was silent like in sand"

Well done Ron, well done.

ABottleADay said...

I Second Rossi's statement!

Dean Tudor said...

Ron, too great a story to stay on a blog -- print it out somewhere, so more can see...

Samantha Dugan said...

No internets for days means just one thing....had to come here and get my HoseMaster injection. Missing you love and so grateful to have this place to hear your talent on one side, your voice here in the comments on the other. xoxox I love you!

Ron Washam, HMW said...

The essence of satire is the cringe worthy moment, so thank you for the kind words. But I also love the throwaway jokes, the casual asides that might catch you by surprise. In comedy writing, those often appear in the rewrite, as that one did here. Thanks for catching it, you and ABottleADay.

I was on a tear with Wine Fairy Tales a few months ago. All five were written in a few weeks, and none since, though I plan to revisit. They might deserve a wider audience--it would be hard to have a smaller one.

My Gorgeous Samantha,
We miss you, too, but I know you're the Belle of the Ball in Champagne right now. I'll pop my cork in your honor.

I love you so!

Charlie Olken said...

Words to live by. Now everyone knows what will happen when they summon a sommelier.

I did beat one at her game the other night. I was looking at the list in Michael Mina when she walked up and asked if I needed help in understanding the list. I smiled as sweetly as she did and demurred, saying that I was still studying the list.

Her response was, "well, there will be a test when I come back". When she did come back to ask if I had chosen wine for dinner, I said that I was ready for the test. After some preliminaries like what was the most expensive wine on the list and did they have any Amarone on the list, she said, "OK, here is the payoff question. Who is the wine director for the restaurant?"

Obviously she did not know I am avid reader of HMW, and after a brief temptation to say "Par Bunyan", I simply said "Raj".

That got my wife and I a glass each of Puligny Montrachet. I thanked her for sparing me the Sandhi Chard and got on with dinner.

So, you see, some Somms are not all that bad--especially when they are young and good looking and can be conned by an old fox.

Ron Washam, HMW said...

Puff Daddy,
Your anecdote may have inspired an "Old Fox and the Sommelier" fairy tale in me. I wish you had mentioned Parr Bunyan just to see if she had any idea what the hell you were talking about. But discretion is the better part of valor.

I'm guessing the Puligny was under 14% alchohol--at least on the label.

Vin de Terre said...

"Thongs For the Mammaries". That's a stretch. Snap!

Bill Klapp said...

Almost perfect! I say "almost" because, well, I believe that the idiomatic expression is actually "the p is silent, like in SWIMMING", rather than in sand. With men our age, it can make quite a sound when it hits the sand over,say, a 5-minute effort!

Marcia Macomber said...

Oh, that picture from Petticoat Junction brings back memories... (It wasn't until years later it occurred to me that guys everywhere were wondering how the lassies managed to get out of the water tank naked w/o being seen. But I digress...)

I do like the recurring them in your fractured wine fairy tales with all the animals having potty mouths. Gives them a lot of personality!

The fun part is seeing a joke coming from a mile away but reveling in the lead up to it. We know the shiny object will become a tastevin. We know it's all heading south when the Magic Sommelier insists upon tasting the daughters. (Noticed he didn't ask for that privilege when he asked the farmer for HIS wish!)

Then there's the layering of jokes. First the tastevin in the field; then the zinger, “Looks like a diaphragm for Lettie Teague.” And you still have to pause for just a sec to let that sink in. Exactly why does a farmer read WSJ? And why does he know a tastevin AND Ms. Teague. And then you answer even that. Love it!

Ron Washam, HMW said...


Actually, I used to say, the P is silent, like in swimming Pool. I just switched it for the hell of it, and old jokes kind of belong in Fairy Tales. As for the 5-Minute pee--that's what wakes me up.

Marcia Love,
Well, absurdity is the essence of comedy, and surprise is the most important part to a joke. Even if you see it coming, it's the second line that contains the surprise.

The Wine Fairy Tales illustrate my writer's dilemma--I actually like them, but they get very little response, statwise or commentwise. And then the crap I toss out there goes all viral. It's why I rarely take a joke out of a piece, no matter how much I hate it--somebody, somewhere will love it. Little wonder comedy writers are all crazy and filled with self-loathing.

You I adore.

Bob Henry (Los Angeles wine industry professional) said...

What a hoot!:

"Online Wine-Certification Course with Optional Chef Jacket from VinNobles (Up to 87% Off Groupon Coupon)"

[Tastevin is likewise optional . . .]