Sipping Cab Franc, from Lodi. Can’t remember the vintage and it really doesn’t matter. Wife and babies are back home, with me, that’s what matters. Liking the wine more, after letting it wake for the past hour or so. Not turning on TV, not listening to music, just the sounds of washer, dryer upstairs. Watching my son draw this evening, just sitting down and finishing a piece then hanging it on the fridge with magnets like his own little show, his wee yet grandiose gallery. Later then he took me through a little sketch book he’d finished, filled while in El Dorado Hills. My 5 year old son brings more to fruition that his father, I thought. I didn’t dwell on it much then, but now that I sit here night before going into work for a full day, first since fire, I do think about it and I see there is no time to waste with even things I dee as minor. Just finish them. Finish everything. Release everything. Even if it’s shit, release it. The wine on the counter, talking to me and telling me to stay on this couch and not go to her, raise glass and tilt. No, keep with musings of wine and finish the goddamn book already, take more pictures, buy more wine and build your cellar, study study study wine with words already in inner shelves, salvos.
Tonight is something for me, for my wine writing— make it more wild. There is no ’S.O.P.’ when it comes to journalism and in-the-moment prose, wine page storms that need escape from the author’s inked alter. Returning to one word, wine, what it tells me to do, what it thinks I should write, the relationship I have with her— not an ‘it’, sorry. Looking around my house now, and so thankful, humbled, and perplexed that I, we, still have a house, I feel only a surge of urgency…. Cabernet Franc, somewhat of an odd varietal and winemaking medium, if you ask me, and how appropriate with me a wine writer being in strange scenes in the past, what, nine days? Ten. Been ten days. Write anything that causes a ripple in your thought pond. Sip the Cab Franc, or whatever. Never mind where it’s from. It doesn’t matter. Family, that’s what’s luminous, rewarding. You work for them. I work WITH wine, not for it nor its industry. WITH.
One guest I met a couple weeks ago asked me what I like to drink. I said to her, “It depends.” She nearly rolled her eyes and said ‘Well of course ‘it depends’, but what do YOU like to drink?”
“Well you can’t like everything.”
She didn’t know what to say and just kept with her sips and trying little bits of what was not he slate under her nose. The conversation didn’t go much past that, but now I think about my answer, and yes, I not only ‘like’ everything out there, types of wine, but I NEED everything. The more wines tried, the more books finished. And maybe one day, I’ll have MY own gallery.