Posts Tagged With: Cabernet Sauvignon

Open Flight

Mike thought there was something to his wine, his first couple releases, three bottles total, and he gave up and riled in victory, and here they corralled, his first visitors. 10:59, and 11. Open. 2.
“Hi, what are you pouring? Our B&B told us today was your first day, is that true?” the lady, sounding somewhere southern, said, looking around at the still shots on the wall then down at the tasting menu; SB, Merlot, Cab.
“Just those three on the menu there, and tastings are complementary, our first day..” Mike said, sipping his last little bit of espresso, from the machine he bought from the last crumb of budget.
“Oh.. that’s it? Just three?” she said.
“Yeah.. that’s all I got today, just those three. What kind of wines do you drink at home?”
“Well… I don’t really like Sauvignon Blanc.. do you have a Chardonnay?”
“No.. Just the SB and the two reds. Where are you from?”
“Oh well.. do you have a bathroom?”
Mike breathed, thought, then stopped his eyes in their bulbous roll. “Just past the painting of the cat, then right.”
She away walked, shaking her head.
“So what else do you have?” the man Mike assumed was her husband charged.
“Two reds, a Merlot and a Cabernet after the Blanc. You want to try them?”
“Sure. So today’s the first day, huh?”
“And how did you get hooked up with this winery?”
“I’m the winemaker and.. I guess owner. Yeah…..”
“Oh good for you. You know what, I will try some wine. How much is the tasting?”
“Nothing. Nothing… I’ll take care of it.”
“Oh well then let’s try some wine.. so Sauvignon Blanc, eh?”
“Yes,” Mike said, pouring, “this one I did in all oak, neutral oak, and just left it there to see what it’d do, what it’d soak up and here you have a white with a little more texture and pull but still quite clean……..”
The man sipped. Thought and looked at the glass, then at Mike. “Not that much in the jolt, eh?”
“I’m sorry?”
“It doesn’t jolt, ya know… ‘the jolt’. It doesn’t have a good JOLT.”
“But I’d drink it! It’s wine!”
Mike smiled and poured himself a little to sip with the man. Then she came back. “Why don’t we go somewhere where there’s Chardonnay, or wine we like there Harry?” she said.
The man put down his glass, empty, “Sorry buddy, you heard the boss. She still looks at me like her little brother, mama would have to laugh.” They strolled to the door, he looking back and raising his hand like he was saying goodbye to an old war buddy or something. Mike poured more of the SB.. he liked it.. soft but bright, light but luminous and with conviction you might get from a red, he thought. Then the Merlot… “How could anyone not like this?” he thought. What he enjoyed about its touch.. the blueberry and dark chocolate, it reminded him of dessert. Then the Cabernet, from Alexander Valley, some fruit he remembered getting dibs on at the last minute, the very last minute. He thought it could be bigger but maybe the wine didn’t want that, didn’t want to be seen that way. Maybe that’s not what the wine wanted to do. So he sipped it, respected it, more than the Merlot and SB for standing its ground and going against that Cab stereotype of hyper-aggression and offense; it was that dark musical syncopation; its own jargon and jolt of joy.. “Jolt,” Mike thought, “this has jolt.” He was tempted to close his room, run out to the plaza and look for the man, to show him what wine is when it has that jolt he wanted.. when it has true life.. when it’s truthful and not contrived.. what Mike wanted he understood now was always what the customer or sipper wanted. And here it was. But he was gone. So Mike poured for himself. Room empty. Glass kept full.


Categories: interim stratum (collected writings by mike madigan) | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Deciding to Attend

Attend what? This session. I told myself that I wouldn’t write anymore today, to just relax this evening, but the ’09 Cab I opened told me to write, and to dive again into Baldwin’s essays. And how he views the world, America, himself. In the Paris Review chat with the interviewer he said he needed isolation to come to terms with who and what he was. And now with this second glass I think about who, truly, I am. And what, the ‘what’. WHAT, am I?! Nearing 36, and I have no idea I know, and I know the ideas will provide some sense but I need more, more sense and vision of what Mike Madigan is. I love Baldwin’s confidence in the face of oppression, in the white man’s world. In all the pieces I read I not only sense and read but taste a sense of fearlessness… That’s what I want in my ‘what’. But as well, in the PR interview, Mr. Baldwin asserts that first-person narrative is ‘terrifying’. And he also says the reader has no reason to trust first-person. I don’t agree.. if anything, the reader doesn’t need to preoccupy with “trusting” the narrator but rather consider their experience, or the tale. Being open. I mean, if it’s fiction, it’s fiction, it’s contrived by the denotative delivery. But what I thought was encouraging, just a couple words later: “…why should you need this I? How is this person real by dint of that bar blaring across the page?” It’s not a matter of needing the ‘I’, but rather considering the ‘I’ for what its ingredients are, conducting a character analysis as you move through the manuscript, and not to determine if that narrator is trustworthy or reliable or even worthy of readership, but just to process the professing prose. To completely write-off the first-person, the ‘I’, is unjust, unfair and too sweeping.
Maybe this is the Cab talking, this bold and vampiric ’09, that dares me to take on Baldwin, to readdress Joyce and his swirly swampy and granulated paragraph streamings… I don’t know, but I’m in a Literary tumble this evening, and the wine and its lecture and story and ‘I‘ only push me further, and I can’t stop, I couldn’t even if I wanted to. This is more than a blog post but a realization of what I’m to do, and that only ‘I’, this writer, can build the career he wants. Everything’s a piece in the novel, everything, and with us about to move to Autumn Walk I need take this prose with more precision and dogma, practice.. tomorrow, the meeting with the winemaker in RRV, finally, asking him questions and responding to his wines– yes I will try to stump or moreso challenge him and find what his views are while at the same time putting mySelf in the student’s seat, learning from his winemaking philosophies and his facundity. We’ll see. I’m not going there to one-up him or show a writer-versus-winemaker form, but to learn. Remember, I want to make wine too!
Last sips of the Cab, and I’m full from dinner, the tacos this ‘Cinco de’. Can’t understand how quickly the semester has past me flown, raced, like it doesn’t care how sensitive I am to Time and its duty. I need another sip… All I can say is “DARK”. Not the most expressive fruit fold on this wine, nor olfactory leaps, but there’s incredible texture and the most anomalous clasp to the tactile reception.. wooing and musical, yes, but I feel there’s more to be told, in a few more years. I don’t want to say “after aging” like some do, but there’s more to be said from this bottle.. don’t rush! And that’s what the wine’s telling me, with the novel and with the semester and my career as a writer: DON’T. FUCKING. RUSH!!! Okay, okay, I say. I’m understanding now, I get it. I’ll slow down, but not in this session, and not with today. I sent writings to 2 locations, 2 publishers, and I’ve posted to the blog a couple times as well– today’s a victory, I’m writing like a dominant penman, very much I feel. And yes I could be prepping for the next classes, but I’m very much of the thought I deserve this time in the nook, yes? The wine, again, telling me to decrease my Literary BPM. BEATS…

With nothing more to mold in this sitting, at this nook table, in my punctuality, I retire, resign for day, night and look forward to morrow, my morrow, the interview with the winemaker, yes, but more, more and more for the novel– remember, I’m a writer, not a bumbling blogger or “wine writer”– I’m thinking about my ‘I’, my story, and MY book. Not the expected– ‘oh, you’re in the wine industry, you have to write about that, and watch what you say…’ No, I’m without lid, and what’s the wine world going to do if I freely speak, and quills are summoned?


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Oeno-Caesura Narrative (inventory)

Sometimes I break, pause from the sips, to collect Self and know precisely what it is aboutIMG_5916 wine that captures the writer and why so often I write about it. In this most recent hiatus, if you will, I think of the varietal that brought me into consistency of sips and bottle-chasing. Merlot. The varietal that’s only popular to deplore from a less-than-quality movie and what now has me kerfuffle’d is how I’m returning to this grape type, after years of flying around from Zin to Syrah, to Malbecs and Pinots.. and now back, back to Merlot, the first bottle magnetizing my character in ’02, when I lived in an apartment in San Ramon and I called my mother to ask what I should serve for guests soon arriving. And she recommended a Blackstone Merlot, think the vintage was ’00 (yeah, it’d have to be, right?). Anyway, here I am, pensive and reflective and scribbling in my Composition Book a lecture to myself to extend this break, don’t sip for a couple days, build the anticipation for the next Merlot cork removed. Pride? Duckhorn? Trefethen? St. Francis? Kaz? What? What should I next meet? What kind of character do I want to greet me? And why do people hate Merlot? Oh yeah I forgot, letting some flimsy-brained film think for you is much easier and painless opposed to actually going to a store buying a bottle and thinking for yourself. Okay.. I’m corrected.
And, in this break from sipping, a curt and coherence cleanse if you might, I wonder what I’ll learn next about wine, its world and the many business models and sizes of wineries, and why winemakers go that way with a varietal interpretation while so many choose another path and practice, or some derivation thereof. The lessons compile, and for the English Professor parcel of Mike Madigan, I can only see more and more to absorb. And I’m overwhelmed, unannoucedly. Maybe I need a glass of wine before dinner– NO, wait, wait.. anticipate, deliberate. And so collecting my senses I hear the dialogue of a tasting room, tourists new to Sonoma/Napa, asking questions and discovering.. discovery.. expansion of knowledge and perspective and.. I should pause like this more often, and do just what I’m doing, listen. To myself and others, and wine’s story will enrich everything about me as a mere sipper.

And the other province about Mike Madigan’s character? One just in love with the translation of grape to bottled content. Professing so much love and curious exponential myriads that loudly envelope senses all. Notably olfactory, gustatory. Spellbinding swirls with the darkly tinted chroma. And just like that.. the glass tilting halt ends. Sipping an ’09 Cabernet from– Doesn’t matter. I’m peace’d, safe in my composing. Logical structuring re-structured in some useful cubism code, one I’m writing not yet. The ’09 tells me to wait, don’t write for a minute, “Just enjoy me,” it orders. I let the strings be pulled. No moving of pen, no typing, just a sip, another.. another.


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Stay Sagacious

IMG_4436Knew right where I was going from the Petaluma Campus, I wanted something to sip of a Bordeaux bend and bravado and I had a certain centering in mind.  So I stopped at Bwise Vineyards, the little embracing tasting room right by Café Citti.  Started with the ’12 Pinot, insisted kindly by my longtime compadre Josh from around the AVA, Sonoma Valley.  Upon aromatic contact I was nudged by rich subtlety, almost to the point of befuddlement, but with a couple more swirls I was wooed by its inherent exposition; the story, the charm and the radiant roar of this Occidental Pinot, as Josh disclosed; 18 months 50% new French.  I this is what I know Bwise to show, tell, share.. so, no surprise for the ravishing start.  Then to the Wisdom, the bottle I nearly always take home when I visit the Bwise Room.  What is there to say but “loud engagement” in this bottle; provocative, voice, persuasion and sensory magic, beginning to finish.IMG_4439  Only reason I didn’t buy a bottle today, I had to get another notebook, as the current Comp Book heaps, and I have over 13 weeks left in the semester…  Then to the ’10 Trios blend, 59% Cab Sauv, 20 Syrah, 12 Cab Franc, and surplus split about PV & ME (Petite Verdot, Merlot).  And I could list and summarize everything else I tilted into my character but it was all uniquely resplendent and quite voluminous.  And approachable!  This is what anyone would deem a “luxury” or “boutique” winery, or “label”, and its approachability and universal feel and character, and song, make it inviting.  That’s why I stopped, right there, on the corner of 12 & Shaw, to have my connection, my appeasement, of Bordeaux interpretation–  “So why the pleasure with Pinot?” you might probe.  IMG_4438Well, curtly, they do it right.  In that ’12, there was assertiveness without the barbaric bravado you might meet from someone producing a Pinot but yet wanting to avoid its intended and inherent softness, ease, and artful acts.  I came to Bwise today to experience a wine producer with care, with respect for the varietals and that connects with sippers on a postmodern level, beyond simple definition and a dumbing-down of descriptor enumeration (and that’s how well-woven these wines are, and will present themselves to your sense and “palate”).
IMG_4440At the end of the visit, my good friends Josh and Sunshine poured me a flight of Bwise behemoths; the ’10 Monte Rosso, the ’10 Brion, the ’09 Napa Valley Cabernet, then as a show of welcome the ’03 Napa Valley Cab, to illustrate how the project will hold in cellar.  I was charmed, and not to much shock this was my leaner, or favorite, for the day, and to a writer/professor it blares character, all of these pours and the label inclusively.  I’m home now, in the nook as I always type in eve at day’s close, and think of what I should have tried again, again, and maybe taken a bottle of.  Next time, as I’m committed to again visit, and, again, if you know me you know I will.  I’m a Cab-chaser, and a Pinot-peruser, so maybe tomorrow or next week or sooner than soon.  We writers need be wise with our words and what better room than this little cove at 12 & Shaw.. do I have that right?  Who cares.  I know where it is, I know where IMG_4441I’m going…  Looking at my pictures, and can’t wait to they take me on that mountain/cave tour.. I find mySelf obsessed, consumed in thoughts of IMG_4442that entity and that bar and everything that Josh and Sunshine poured me.  Readying for bed thinking about these wines, and what I should have bought and that doesn’t happen too often; these wines, all of them, have voice and coercive qualities.  I’ll be there, at that bar, with Sunshine and Josh, or whomever’s behind that sleek counter, I don’t care, long as the Bwise wines are there… which of course they’d be.  I left rapt, devout, and thinking of my next visit, which could very well be next week, or sooner.

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And tonight we ordered in from Monti’s..

me getting the flank and Alice getting that chicken, can’t remember how it’s prepared. And with the Queen’s order, I open a bottle of the ’10 Sophia’s Hillside Cuvée, Lancaster of course. Decided to keep that wine club as it’s the only one I have and I need to treat myself somewhere, and why not with wine. Right now I type with a glass so full of the CS/CF blend I’m intimidated, one side of me saying, “I have to drink all that?” But I have to remain in Beat mode tonight and think about the day and how nothing happened except the wonderful tour with the SRJC students, with the “professor” gifting me two bottles of Washington reds, one a Bordeaux and the other a ’12 Cab. And I think.. wine, wine.. what do I do with it, how many pictures of vineyards and full wine glasses can I take? It’s all repetition after too long, more redundancy that reiteration, right? The phone, with all those wine pictures, and for what? Would rather read Nate’s article again, the one I’m to post to the blog, about space issues and travel and exploration.. love his short curt venom paragraphs, with the antagonistically edged wit and humor. First sip of this glass, and I think of my time at Lancaster, when I’d cal it ‘AV Winery’, back in ’12, how they came to my rescue after the box executed me, set me up for a pretty failure by giving me that goddamn no-call list– or “non-buyer list” from P—-J—. Those bastards, but they let me go, they freed me, and I remember that walk to my car, feeling that promise that I haven’t felt since graduating grad school. Looking through these pictures in my ‘photolog’, I realize how against me time is but I write through the ripples of this Cab blend and I think abou tomorrow and today, what’s to be is the moment to present me, apparently. And I have to let the box go, what they did– was doing well there for a while but in recent weeks with all I’ve been feeling towards the winery and the industry I’ve been recalling what happened there, in those final days, how I have a Master’s degree– I’ve done all that I should have with college and jobs and being an eventual adult.. ughgk….. I have to let it go, I have to just write and release everything, focus on my students and this new semester and how the morning feels, before the 1A, it’s so off and odd, so early. I’m not used to that.
The tumbler Alice bought me; coffee, not so much an addiction but a mandatory verdict and determiner with my Art, my journal entries, and I’ll need it after this wine, but more that that it comforts, and my son associates me with it, “You have coffee, Dada?” Makes me laugh, makes me self-conscious (Asking myself ‘Am I addicted to caffeine, to these mandatory cups, or cups I think are mandatory?’), and meditative. I’m conflicted tonight, with this blend, with myself, and I sip again, feeling tired, feeling yesterday’s run, and feeling lifted with this new year. And with these classes, with my students– I hate calling them that, cuz if they’re my students then that makes me the allknowing almighty professor, and I’m not that, I’m not smart enough to be THAT.
Want to write a piece about the manager, the one who can’t let it go, even for a minute; always with frown on his face, so serious and so concentrated– Will write a sketch or stream of sketches about him– why can’t he let it go? The work? Why? For what? And while he’s walking out to the parking lot, to this car, he has to confront one of the employees, offer an idea, something that will change, as there needs to be change, and that’s his legacy, what he does at his life’s end, order order, command and delegate. Sick and sad, what I can say, profound pestilence, and I think he knows but he doesn’t know how to be any other way, he has to play that role– sick SICK! Management… I don’t care if it’s a “bump”, it’s sick, it’s minimal, and in the wine industry it’s no enlivening pay ascension at all, believe me. But he doesn’t care, he’ll always get his bonuses, we’re expected to just follow, run, jump, arrange and work. SICK! But what if you question? OH, you can’t!
Tomorrow I’ll write everything he says, everything.. for the book and for my edification and stipulations.. my students, they won’t have a coward for an English Instructor, or Professor, or whatever they call us– goddamn I’m so venomous tonight. And I love it! I’m lionhearted in these verdicts, these paragraphs that make me ME, or I think, and at my age I just have to type, no more thinking or meditating, just write & release. MY wine glass empty, and good, I need sleep, and I can’t wait for the coffee, honestly.
I’m ready for bed. And I’m ready for a vacation. I know, “Aren’t we all?” Yes, but like me, I don’t know. The winery, fulltime, then adjuncting… I mean, how many more days of this reality can I hold? I know, calm down, relax, just even yourself, focus inward, on the center, right? “Have some fun.” I’m trying, believe me. Would love to go to bed right now but I can’t.. I have the writer’s mind, that I always have to be writing, and I’m not in the TR so I’m not distracted by gossip or talk or any wandering tourist that wants to know everything about wine like there’s so much to be known. “Oh, I’m actually a sommelier…” “Oh, I’m a certified wine educator…” “And?” I want to ask. But I can’t. I have to be hospitable, I have to play, act, make sure that fawning boil-brained dewberry quakes contently. I shouldn’t care and I don’t, but I’m playing the game, playing him– look, I’m writing my thoughts sovereignly, posting them here, on this “blog”, and what?

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Hope Jack sleeps thoroughly tonight. Going to have one more pour of the Res Cab, then spill the rest out. One guy today, asking me with this interrogative tone, “So why do some menus just say ‘Cabernet’ and the others, like yours, say ‘Cabernet Sauvignon’?” A legitimate question, yes, but his vocal color was quite off-putting, like I was an uneducated servant, just there to pour for him.

Should pour the Cab. Want to be upstairs, in bed, by 10:30, latest– maybe I should skip the wine. No, not when it’s this good… Oh dear sweet Craft that tastes amazing. The summer.. have to order my books. And I need to bring papers to grade tomorrow. No lunch with my new closest of cohorts, Dwight. I’ll be in my car, in the overflow lot, evaluating submissions, maybe a little writing. I’ll always be writing, so readers should just foreknow I’ll have ink into lines.

Not sure how I made through day. Had to have been the blending trial, all the thoughts surrounding novel, the one cave tour I did, that lunch with Dwight [where I didn’t have a beer, but rather a Coke to help keep me bright]… Not sure what to do now, but finish the glass I poured. The Cab, still holding its ground against oxygen invasion. Need to get into some of the Lancaster Cab & Cab blends I have upstairs. 10:08– Going to enjoy my night, stop writing. There’s always a time the writer can stop, should be understood why he stops, and the time for THIS writer’s now. MY Life, in a blend of dilemmas, where wine provokes.. it’s an interesting throw of goes, really. Part of me wants to laugh, the other to drink more.

So I swallow the Cab’s remainder, glass, like there’s an attached clock. EAP, chooses to watch, push my pen to Ligeia’s spot. -4/24/14

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Home from errand, syllabus work.  Bought parking permit for semester, went to storage unit as well, for XA’s pink slip.  So much clutter in those file boxes of mine.  Resolved not opening another file on this laptop, or outside [paper manila folder, or whatever’s similar], or buying another journal, Comp Book, or spiral notebook INDEFINITELY.  It’s time to consolidate at this point in my  life.  And I hate to say it like that, as it only underscores I’m older, getting older, aging.  Time, enjoy your victory, devil.

Beautiful outside.  Hoping to fit in a run, at some point.  Jack and Alice, in their respective nap modes upstairs.  And me, the writer, ever-obsessed, down here, typing my Life away to a stoic screen.  Going to start typing poems for the 3[+]4 Project, tonight.  Need something to sell, as money starts to tighten.  Would love a nap right now, myself..  Perhaps I should close my eyes for a bit.. see what shape the writer takes when he wakes.


10:16pm.  Feeling a mess, as a writer today.  Managed to finish both syllabi, yes, and fit in close to 5 miles running [or somewhere over four].  But I still feel off, like I’m cyclical, and have been for years.  Think the start of such thought was the storage unit visit.. seeing all those files, all those wasted, essentially writing efforts.  Nothing more new.  Going to build on old.  Have legal sheets at left, just in case I feel verse urge.  But I’ve posted two poems already.  Letting Self enjoy a freewrite.

Tomorrow, driving to Napa to get new car detailed.  Only bringing Comp Book with, the Black&White.  Need quite, in this uncomfortably stuffy downstairs.  News just claims temp of 95 for Antioch, tomorrow.  Wondering what’s set for our corner of wine’s world.  Speaking of.. sipping a ’10 Cab tonight.  About to pour night’s cap, thinking of what I’m writing for.  See this video’s still pic on laptop’s desktop.  So much material gathered, why am I not earning from it, in my office.. ON ROAD?

Too hard on Self, maybe.  Listening to this instrumental, just after pouring a laughably kind glass of 10CS, I think some verse is needed for night.  Just as Plath did with entries in ‘Johnny Panic’, I plan to blend all these moments together.  And I don’t care if they “make sense.” I’ll be able to say I did it.  I’m doing it.

Couple worlds I want to explore, just for my own curiosity’s self-mockery: Astronomy, Aviation, Sea Navigation.  ‘Specially the latter.  Recently, have become obsessed with boating, sailing from one point to next, logging it all, like a sea captain.  OR, fly all over the country, or world, like Dad, noting everything I see.  Seeing the same thing, day in-out.. not the most healthy or useful way to churn marketable material– forget it being “marketable” … MEANINGFUL material.


As air conditioner tries to calm me, in

my fiery spiral, I only rattle more–

practically tactical.

Want 2B radical.

Beat slowing.  4

measures per breath,

hope that’s enough, time

taunting. It doesn’t care, not tonight

anyway. Lectures, only days away, laugh at

my own notes, isn’t that what we do for preparedness?


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Street Strolling, ode-ing

IMG_1363Tonight, not much blogging.  All for book, or books.  Tired from day, and a bit from last night’s session.  My temperament, much more subtle, settled than last night.  Sipping water, sparkling, right now.  On night’s agenda: syllabi, studying [for classes and projects concerning Self.. wine, Lit theory, wine making, Art, French, French history], writing in books, from little note pages.  Putting together Frankenstein pages, chapters.  Then, I’m distracted.  Dinner thoughts.  What should I have?  Lasagna?  Should I go out?  No, I’ll save that for tomorrow night, my last alone.

Find Self overthinking.  AGAIN.  Just let night progress, keep goals simple.  So, 36 printed pages.  That will make a ms [manuscript].  Indiana Jones, Last Crusade, on again.  Won’t lie, I’m watching.  But not for that long.  Only letting Self work down here till 8pm.  Then, up2office.  In the mood for a Little Sumpin’.  I’ll sip slow, as I need something to sale.. profitable pages.  Autonomy, 2013’s only goal.

IMG_1360Paris…  Want to write on the Seine.  Record everyone passing.  Would love to have a picnic with my character, one of those benches.  Just bread, cheese, something red.  Something else to research tonight, if I remember: French wine regions, French Oak barrels.  Want this diary I’m keeping to be as findings-full as Jones, Sr.  Envy how all these characters don’t rely on tech as we do.  No cell phones, no ipads, nothing electronic, connected to physical.

7:18pm.  Winemaking, one of my study objectives tonight.  Thinking this year–this VINTAGE–I’ll do only 1 wine, but 1 barrel of it.  Have it be my last trial wine.. my trial masterpiece.

8:14pm.  Downstairs, still, as I just finished dinner.  Opened my only ’07 Cabernet, Alexander Valley.  My notes, in pocket.  Today, slow as it was, did provide quite a bit of thought.  Reminding me of the peace in wine’s industry.  I should never get upset, defensive.  That indicates weakness, exposure, vulnerability, INSECURITY on my behalf.  That’s inartistic.. TRUE Art de- and connotes strength, VIGOR.  Can’t and shouldn’t blame “the industry” for being what it is, what it can’t help but be.  Due upstairs now at 9pm.  Can’t wait to try this ’07.  Paris, this wine, only can be in fantasy.  Need to respond to past student, wanting me to read some of her Creative pieces.  Think it may be short pieces.  Going to write her really quick.  But it won’t be a letter.  Rather a note on by way of some stupid social medium.  Well, I could write it here, first, on this little monster [laptop].  I’ll do that, I’m thinking.  Letting the ’07 breath, wake.  What I need do with Self.  No innuendo, just candor here, towards Self, his works.


8:29pm.  Headed upstairs.  With a Cab-crowded glass.  Going to just print.  Whatever I can find.  Need something to sell.  Going to have to edit, just facing unavoidable task.  Writers edit.  Their own work.  Self-published writers do, obviously.  What I want 2do.  Just rambling.  Getting bored with sitting.  So I off log.  Want to taste that ’07, but should I give it a little more time?  When did I open it?  Should have logged that.

Looking at a couple pictures from today, the last few shifts.  Winemaking, this vintage especially, on mind.  Want my wines to not only represent “terroir,” but also speak for me.  I want them to tell story, convey consciousness.  Wonder what I’m going to be thinking tasting my ’13 wine, for 1st time, when it’s finally in barrel.  Now, needing glass.


Telling stories to perspectives other.

Figuring it all, in times protracted.

Gifting characters renewed suitedness.

(1/6/13, Sunday)

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a writing wino’s time, slow

1/2/13.  With this solitude, I can write in morning.  Time 8:43a.  So not for long.  First work day of this new year, and I’m set to write, capture, record, film EVERYTHING.  Still have grading to do.  Pretty sure it’s due in 2 days.  If I DO have tomorrow off, I’ll wake early, just get it out of the way.  Need to get grading book from office depot, or hut, or max or whatever.

Old friend from college, in from out of town.  Can’t be out late tonight.  Have to  stand strict with Self as I was last night leaving early from Ed’s.

Out door.  Mocha, then winery.  4 shots, this A.M.  I blame his Syrah.  ’08, my favorite vintage for the chief Rhône…


IMG_13079:13pm.  After a slow day, I’m done with dinner.  Sipping an ’09 AV Cab.  Still needs to breathe a bit.  I DO have tomorrow off.  Have to wake early, finish grading.  Then, WRITE.  4myLIFE.  Have to get these projects done, salable.  Looking at the stills I shot today, the notes I took.  Love the phrase “instead-of-dinner wine,” from the guy on my last mountain top tour.  Heater going, here in condo castle.  Surprisingly cold outside.  Tonight, all newJournal writing.  Told Self I’d post 5 times to blog tonight, but that’s ridiculously unwise.  First, if it were all written posts, not photog’, video.. it’d be wasting, Art I could have Self-published, sold.  And if visual, filmed, it’d just be repetitive, in my opinion.  It wouldn’t be WRITING.  Opinions, all I have anymore.  This wine, reminding me of work I have to do on my barrels.  MKCS, especially.  Katie and I are supposed to get together at some point this week to talk about our project.  Eager to hear what she thinks should be done, if anything.  My last tasting, thought it sat a bit light.  But, all more reason to soon revisit.


Watching a movie, one I ordered.  Going a bit too long.  Kind of bored.  Would rather again watch one of my writing movies that I’ve seen dozens, if not over a hundred times.  Not much else to report.  Nothing at all, really.  Does this mean I actually get to break from writing, from being a writer?  Just enjoy my night, drink cinematic Alexander Valley 2009 Cabernet?  Maybe I can take a break from these pages, like Mom says.  Just for a night.  Need another sip.  Think the “movie” is nearly done.  At this point, it’s neither funny nor directed, even directionless.  I just don’t know what it’s doing.

IMG_1316Feeling bored, strangely.  How do I change the evening’s blandness, inject–no, inoculate randomness?  Have no idea.  I’ll go upstairs, get newJournal–  No.  Don’t think that’s the answer either.  Feel I’m trying to force something, some moving project, some piece that’ll send me, Author.  Nothing to say, I feel.  But with venturing Bordeaux to sip.  A jumping political patch of its own, honestly.  This wine has a position, a personality.  A philosophy.  It’s cognitive, conscious.  Creative.  More pictures tempting me.  Some taken last night.  A couple.  But even still…  They have me feeling Artistic.  Artsy, much I hate that word.  Want another sip.

Finally, one of my movies.  Now I do feel reactionary.  —  You know what, I’m stopping.  To do some actual WRITING.  Oh, and that happens on paper.

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Wine Retaliation, ’13

None here.  Only peace.  Wined love.  In wine’s world, attractive set stage.. set, stage.  Punching in, 11:22am.  Much earlier than I thought.  Alice & Jack, airborne.  The whole drive back, missing them.  And, thinking about writing, what I’m going to write, how I’d write it, what I’d want readers to walk away with.  Then I realized, I’m overthinking.  Poison, to us penners.  So, I’ll just type.  Have a list of goals for day, and I’ll do my best.  Typed day’s targets into phone, with last night’s writing movie still on mind.  May watch it again today.  Just realized, I’m writing in kitchen, during day, in complete silence.  With blueberry scone in oven, my 3-shot mocha not even touched.  Never with those realities, before.  One item on day’s chart: take inventory of wine.  I’ll be honest, I kind of lost track of what I have upstairs.  And down here.

Don’t think my morning manuscript mocha’s ever tasted this incredible.  Weather outside, perfect for a so-far perfect opening to this new year.  I heard someone say, “The way you begin the new year’s how the rest follows.” To state, bluntly, I think that thought stream’s garbage.  But, if it were true, with any value grains, I’m almost childishly anxious for scenes my way sailing.  Need some music.  This quiet’s disquieting my focus.

With music, I can only realize what I have before Self, as a writer.  A whole day.  Mine.  And again, more than I thought since I’m back home far ahead of where I estimated.  Part of me thought of tasting today, but I don’t think anywhere’s open.  And that’s fine.  I want to lock Self in studio, as I said in a video I shot earlier, crossing the Golden Gate.  Should go for a drive with newJournal, cameras, see what I produce.  That is, when certain targets have been hit.  Methodical, strategic, pragmatic, cunning..

IMG_1287Just put newJournal upstairs.  Wish I hadn’t.  Just had a rhyme, random lines fly by.  Have the little pages, right, on top of Plath’s book.  Just scribbled what I could remember.  Hate when I forget thoughts, especially poetry, song.  But, if I didn’t summon it, it mustn’t have been worth recollection.  Right?  Assurance.. please?  The smoldering scone, spiritual.  Not as buttery as I thought.  The olfactory offerings promise something richly buttered.  But no.  Consistent, rustic, humble.  Balanced.  Takes me back to Paris, where Alice & I would go each morning for our mochas, pastries [before we discovered a Starbucks down the street, right at third corner, I think].  But even when we found that SBUX legions had already invaded France, we preferred our morning sweets from the the lovely high octave French woman.. “Bonjour!!!” she’d always say.  And, “merci vous cous,” as we walked away, barely able to hold selves back from devouring our extraterrestrial gluttony grenade.

Think I want another.  And how is this mocha nearly evaporated?  Selfish writer!  Should I make some coffee, here in castle?  These Wine Bar Beats, their chilled persuasive flutters, making me sleepy.  Can’t take nap, have to stay in seat, as I urge the students.  Speaking of which, need to hop to grading, at some point.  Think they’re due 1/4/13.  Can’t overthink.  Let day progress as it, and you, unanimously wish.  (11:59am)

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