Biz In

fullsizeoutput_1a77Waking early this morning with Jack and his friend that slept over, then taking a nap, having time with family, getting coffee for wife and I then later making buy-fly pact with wife for breakfast, me flying she buying.  Haircut, errand, now finally back home to quiet house tow rite.  Focused on work, MY work, what I have to tomorrow do in this brand management meeting.  Branding, much I don’t like the term it is a consistency and consideration, a determining reality in business.  Business and all the forms it can take, all the business types, yes, but as well what people decide will be their business, and why.  I lately have been overthinking my business but no longer with one easily expected singular word— DO.  No need for excess deliberation and forecasting in business, I’m learning.  Yes, you want to plan a little, but when it comes to “branding” I see the most healthy and essentially obvious option is to just act, start a conversation, start a small project then link with another.

Older I get, I’m annoyed with my excess measuring, diminished cut counts.  Now, I just cut, write, act.. here in the kitchen with a finally-quiet house, I exercise ME, my identity and “brand” if you wish to it tag.  The tireless writer, learning from everything, from my early rise then soon after nap when Jackie’s friend left.  I wrote that resting isn’t a sign of weakness but strength, as warriors know when to collect.  Writing down the ideas I’ll share in the meeting tomorrow, which aren’t many, but all revolve around conversation, information, informing your prospects and would-be buyers why they should buy and who you are, and what’s present in your story, your reality.  MY work, is this.  Thoughts.  Putting ideas into practice and seeing what lands, what produces.  Being eased from sleep by little voices, I learned to stop being so stressed, stop thinking so much about what need be done and just DO.  And, have fun.  Enjoy the act of actuating, the story of the build.

And if you’re in business, or a writer like me who’s also in business, or a thoughtful Human, PLEASE take moments like this not at all lightly.  Times where you can sit in a quiet room and collect yourself, think about what you;’re doing and precisely in what direction you want your story to sprint.  OF course I advise write it down, ALL OF IT, being a writer, yes, but if you don’t want to then concentrate on where you sit, where you walk— beach, park, woods, or around the city.  When I left the pillows and sheets this morning I knew today, eve of my meeting, that I would be different, that all has to be different, starting today.  With July half over, I don’t have time to measure the material.  Scissors are out, and I cut the shapes I’m made to create.  I start a conversation here, with myself and you— what are you doing?  What are you creating?  Where are you having your story go?  How are you managing the brand of YOU?

7/15/18

With a glass of ‘14

Merlot in tow, I measure everything. Seeing more of me, my future, forgetting about age for a minute which I know will make certain readers quite happy, but here.. now… right now with this wine, the grape that pulled me further into it all. Not much a writer, right now, after the taxing tasting room tale that was today, with my little vino sis Taylor. 21:25, should just clock out, shouldn’t I… watch some writer show and note in the Burgundy Journal, something. Something that will get me to the Road– fuck I’m tired of wishing. So stop. Do. Ceasing these types. Wine and ink, a page– now.

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img_1712Just finished a short story.  Who knows what I’ll do with it.  Probably post to blog, or print, I don’t know.  But today, is going to be that awesome day.  Without fixating and over-promising, I see the winemaker character.  My sister to start, the guys downstairs, and am more eager to write them.  Inventorying barrels and conducting blending trials, tastings of different lots, walking vineyards to measure and manage growth, anticipate yield… the loud music they play on the crush pad.  I do want to write wine, and I will, but I want to write them.  These people making the wine, hopefully one day soon having my own label like Ed, my character in this morning’s piece.  Invitation only…. Not to be snobby or “exclusive”, and I hate that fucking word, but just to have a hobby that more or less pays for itself.

Harvest coming closer with every day I’m here, that we’re all here.  The fruit out there will be part of this facility and crushed and everything about the structure changes.  I will change, the moods will change.  More to write and photograph… should get out to the vineyards quick, before the day starts.  Now 09:03.  Writing the winemaker, winemaking… cleaning all the equipment before August, arranging barrels, cleaning the bins, more loud sounds, topping all the barrels with wine already residing, sulfuring, then preparing for the first fruit landing.

Should seriously consider taking part of today, off.  Go tasting somewhere I either haven’t or somewhere I haven’t visited in some time.  I need more newness… so go get it, I tell myself, nearly yelling at self in this cubicle.  Wine, making it, watching wine take shape and being in the lab to monitor each of its advances, unexpected changes and declines.  Wine will always mystify me but more than that educate me on me and why I’m here, why I deal with so much of this industry nonsense, departments feuding with each other and so many rumors and people talking about others when they should be taking inward considerations.  Wine doesn’t care.  The vines don’t care.  They do their respective doings.  The vines produce their clusters that reflect weather and vintage conditions, year after year.  And the wine lives, changes and shows new signs and sings notes new that we’ve never before heard as she furthers into time’s appellation.

Co-worker telling me she’ll be in a little later, so I have time to self in TR and can taste through wines and note in my Burgundy Journal what’s to me said… I’m looking for new language in wine, today, for sakes of one day making my own wine again but just getting to know her, wine, better.  More intimacy with what I sip and what I do every day I’m alive, now.  Last night sipping that blend and she saying more to me than in past visits, past interactions and conversations with that particular bottle.  09:16… just want to write wine all day.  And that’s what I’ll do.  What will they do, fire me?  I’m the last one left.. my wine diary assumes a more aggressive missive and meaning, intention and electrical edifice.

Much later in the day, tempted to just be lazy and watch some writer show,

img_5853a show that a writer like me would like and always watches, sipping the red blend I took home from Roth, a bottle today opened, I’m here.  Present.  Thinking about what this blend says to me but then not, just drinking and thinking, meditating in the room I’m in, the Now of it all, quiet house with babies upstairs asleep, me still a bit hungry but the words and wine suffice.  More than so do.  Tired, and getting more so, needing to just relax and thinking I may give in to this pull to that writer show.  Coffee for morning made, asked wife to wake me when she does for her ‘mommy bootcamp’ or whatever it is that has me more than emulous, in what she does— how she just gets up when her alarm goes off and drives to that studio when it’s still dark.  Okay, seriously, more than seriously, more than merely “seriously”…. I’m doing it tomorrow, waking at 04:00 or whenever she does, and writing, like I do now, to music, to these beats, see my tasting room, corner, or “nook” as I earlier in the week wrote.  The blend now assumes and percusses more a maple-sent send of a note.  2015, a vintage that had so many wondering where’s the yield, where’s the fruit, but what was pulled was prophetic and describing more a moment and character, conviction than those vintages that the wine “critics” and “experts” besieged you genuflect. 

Exhaustion from a day in the tasting room catches the writer but he refuses to slow in fact he entertains getting another glass of the ’15 blend when this sentence is done.  OR, maybe the paragraph.  19 days left in this project hat tis July ’18, and what a project, what a time to write wine, start my own label, invitation-only, asking family and friends only to come over and assure I comfort my hobby.  And that’s all it is, all it should be… me consulting winemakers and somehow convincing Katie make the Cabs, Chards… two of each.  Will start with one barrel of Cab, of course, then build or do whatever from there.  Not looking to ask for any permissions or any invitation, promotion, or any such bar.

Closing the night, this writer.  The blend now telling me to stop writing, to relax and enjoy the night and prepare for earlier writing as that’s where answers are, wine responses and solution, no dilution and only profitable profusion.  My sight is in this sitting clear, a fitting fearing nothing…. The components of what I sip each autonomously actuate and dictate a juxtaposed take of my current slate.  More to forward, more to the next line, and glass if I choose so.  The wine now, just looking at me, with her darker than gothic add of an etch.  Poe, in head, his poetic lectures, what I’m to do with characters that me unnerve or, and, insult.

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This morning, telling self the day I want to have is the one I WILL have. 

Photo on 7-12-18 at 9.04 AMCompletely a wine thing to say… defiance and independence, freedom in expression and practice.  The same group of older humans at the table across from me, the long rectangular.  One of the looks particularly worn today, tired and nearly ready for death it seems.  Morning teaching me to live more freely, wildly… what are we afraid of?  Just write freely, let wine’s memories and stories echo and play in your inner thought plates, plains and rains.  With the journal Mom bought me in Beaune a couple weeks ago to my right, and a former student messaging me from England, showing me certain times of night and how they’re perfect for writing, this morning I’m particular intentioned, into what I’m doing right here in this seat, for my wined life.  I’m not meant to be contained and compressed in that goddamn tasting room.  But I’ve said that before, I know I know.

No tasting in the lab yesterday with brother Chris, as I’d hoped, so I just strolled around the crush pad and thought about my life in the industry, where I want to go, where I’ve been, the trek and seafaring of it all.  From the first tasting room day to today working for a bigger corporation, with multiple properties, just wanting to sell wine but still confronted with unnecessary befuddle and kerfuffle, in a rumor puddle that I as I age have no more fortitude for.  Tired of my equanimity being cut like a piece of paper in some workshop in my son’s kindergarten class.  No such thing will materialize today, as I write from one end of the winery to the next, from one part of the schedule to day’s close.  I’ll taste through each wine and write differently.  Wine is not a symbol of pattern and the expected, but the random, the whim, the alchemical sight and sense of what’s around you.

Didn’t taste anything that exciting last night, just the remainder of the St. Francis Sonoma County Chardonnay, and the ’14 Claret.  Can’t remember the vintage on the CH, I think ’15 or ’16, but I sipped only about a glass, all that was left in the Burgundy glass.  I thought about Chardonnay and how my sister’s style of Chardonnay is much what not only persuaded me to enjoy Chards a little more and be more open to their characters and directions expressively, but built her career.  Catch myself staring out the window of this Windsor Starbucks and thinking about wine and what I’m doing… if I didn’t write about it what would I do in its business, ‘the industry’?  You’re not going to make that much unless you’re some executive, upper management, or a winemaker.  But even with that, would I be appeased?  My only choice is to write… about the wines I taste and what I see in the tasting room from employee interaction to what visitors say, to my seemingly aimless and senseless walks through Cabernet blocks.

Wine sings in and from everything I do this morning.  With so many I know traveling, getting outside their boxes.  Wine lassos me to mobility, to not being stuck anywhere, to not having to hear about what this person says about this one, and what management wants and what the sales goal is, what has to be done to inventory and… all of it.  I’m in wine for the stories, for the words, for the recital of everything…  Was sad last night when the Claret was done.  Didn’t know how to feel, and didn’t want to open anything else in hopes I could get to bed earlier which I did and wake earlier which I of course didn’t.  On a mission, notably with this month and all noted in the Burgundy Journal, for preeminent happiness.  Noted a bit ago that I will have precisely the type of day I wish.  It’s no one’s choice but mine, this morning teaches me, in concert with my 4-shot mocha.  Ready to see more in wine, today.  Exercise my defiance, my interpretation of each wine in 500+ word songs.  The ’16 Pinot Gris, even, deserving of a track… the stainless Chardonnay and my single-vineyard AV Cab.  Everything.  Everything in a vino skip, today and forever.  I know what wine is from being consciously aware of what she’s not.  I know what my first sip’s to be, in terms of the poetic whip of it.  The words, ready and eager to be on page.. not feeling the block or thought sludge of previous mornings.  My writing has to perpetuate in a promising breath and breadth limitlessness.  ‘Do it like this… Do it like that…’ You’ll hear management say.  My response, what if I don’t in my pages?  Then what?  What if I write from the wines and not about them… or better, TO the wine herself?  What if I stop calling wine ‘it’ and recognize her for what she is… Mythic, incorporeal, music… atmospheric, mystery, more question marks than declaratives?  What would these other wine “writers” and “critics” have to say? Not sure I’m concerned, not this morning… go this morning to what I want, what I see overseas, in Paris and the Czech Republic, South Africa, Australia, everywhere.

Wine molds my consciousness and ethical composition, from kindness and invitation, free state of thought and immediate and meditative presence.  Shared my thought again yesterday that nothing punctuates the brevity of life like wine, to 4 Texans that came to property for a tour and tasting, which included the wine-cheese thing we do (which needs massive improvement in term of the experience itself).  See self getting older, closer to 40.. now I really act.  Wine’s ordering me to do just that. Don’t accept the tasting room as any finality, don’t accept any finality in fact, in fact.  That’s not what wine is.  Wine is the last day working with your favorite industry person, sipping what you choose, and writing how the moment realizes itself, you, her, everything around you.  As, it’s not forever.  None of this is.

7/12/18