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How Possessive Are The Wine Lovers?

September 17, 2013 Leave a comment Go to comments

MWWC_logoIf you are following wine blogs, you might have noticed the theme “possession” showing up here are there. Yes, this is no accident – the common linking factor is the Monthly Wine Writing Challenge (MWWC for short), in its third incarnation.

The theme for the first challenge was “transportation” – it was relatively easy to tie up to the wine both directly and allegorically. The theme for the next challenge was “trouble”, which sent me home scrambling  – “trouble” is not the first thing which comes to mind when you are looking at a glass of wine. In the end of the day, many bloggers successfully found the connection and produced a lot of interesting posts. The current theme, “Possession”, is a whole different game. On one side, it has a direct connection to the wine – but it is too direct for the nice intricate piece. “I possess wine. Sometimes, wine possesses me. The end”. On another side, it is almost forcing you to go into pretty much the exorcism route, which can be played, but this is not necessarily pretty (need examples? Do a google search for “wine possession” – you will find some stuff which might make you afraid to visit your cellar when it is dark).

So as you can deduce from my rant, I don’t have a good play on the theme. What you will find below is rather a collection of random thoughts, centered on the wine appreciation, with the nod towards the “possessive” relationship of wine lovers with the subject of their love.

So how possessive the wine lovers are? We can find few different types of “possessiveness” among the wine lovers as such. First, there are wine collectors (of course, that is an obvious one). But even among wine collectors there is one extreme group which I would like to exclude from the actual category of the wine lovers. That is the group which rather collect the money than anything else. Wine is strictly an investment for them, and they never think about bottle of wine in terms of the actual content. For this group, the wine is only an object which will appreciate in value, and at some point it will be exchanged for cash and profit. This group also includes the worst possible type – the wine-possessive ego-maniacs. For this group the wine which they stock in their cellars is intended to be an ego-booster – “I spent on that bottle 10 times more than you did”, and “my bottle is bigger and more round than yours”. In the end of the day, I’m not even sure if this group even belongs to the true wine lovers category.

Then there are those who love wine, but don’t care to possess it at all. Folks in this group happily drink the wine at any occasion, they serve the wine at their parties, and they buy a bottle on the way home when they feel like it. But they really don’t “possess” wine, as they don’t keep much wine in the house, and most importantly, they don’t assign any special attributes to any bottles.

And then comes the rest. The group of wine lovers who possesses the wine and actually, is possessed by the wine at the same time (I’m including myself in this group, so I’m continuing here from the collective of “we”). We keep the wine. We make the wine special by associating special mementos with those bottles – “ahh, this is the year we got married”, “remember we had this wine in Tuscany”, “this is the year our son was born”, “remember that winery visit”. We do our best to keep those bottles cool, quiet and comfortable. And then we wait. While buying the wine with mementos, we are also investing, of course. We are investing into exciting anticipation of how special this wine will taste when we will finally open it. While we hold on to the bottle, we can re-live that future moment over and over. We are possessed with finding the right moment for that special bottle. But what is important, that right moment also includes the right people. How many times have you thought “ohh, if they (whomever “they” are) are coming over, I got this special bottle we have to open”. Yes, we are possessed with wine. But we don’t buy it just to enjoy by ourselves. We are also possessed to share. We  want to share the experience. We want to share the special moment. We don’t want to keep it to ourselves. Without special moment or a special company, that bottle never gets to be opened.

And that is what I want to leave you with. Possessed by wine. Possessed to share.

  1. September 17, 2013 at 9:58 am

    I am loving your final paragraph! Yes, wine is about a common experience for me as well. The communal aspect of sharing, of enjoying together, of surprising, impressing, gratifying friends is just so wonderful.

    I think you got a good take on this topic. I am still putting finishing touches on mine, should go live this week…I went for a whole different twist.

    • September 17, 2013 at 12:12 pm

      I agree–wine is a relationship-building experience.

      I don’t think it’s coincidental that wine has also been the symbol of a sacramental experience. There is often joy and unity in a shared bottle of wine; and not merely symbolically, but actually.

      • talkavino
        September 17, 2013 at 6:40 pm

        Sacramental use might be a whole interesting aspect of discussion. I would think that in the sacramental use wine was a sign of exclusivity – only a privileged few had an opportunity to drink the wine?

    • talkavino
      September 17, 2013 at 6:35 pm

      Yes, sharing is a very important aspect of wine… Looking forward reading your post!

  2. September 17, 2013 at 2:02 pm

    “But we don’t buy it just to enjoy by ourselves. We are also possessed to share. We want to share the experience.” Exactly! I won’t open a bottle unless there is someone else with whom to share it. Excellent post.

    • talkavino
      September 17, 2013 at 6:37 pm

      Thank you very much!

  3. September 17, 2013 at 5:29 pm

    Drinking wine is just not as much fun without someone to share it with. WIth my busy schedule I possess way too many good bottles I haven’t gotten to open because I just wont enjoy them alone.

    • talkavino
      September 17, 2013 at 6:38 pm

      Looks like we see it an eye to eye : )

  4. September 17, 2013 at 7:07 pm

    Great interpretation! And I agree, Anatoli . . . the best wines are the wines we share with family and friends. Your post made me think about one of my favorite wine quotes: “A bottle of wine begs to be shared; I have never met a miserly wine lover.” ~Clifford Fadiman

    • talkavino
      September 17, 2013 at 7:13 pm

      Thanks, Kirsten! Your favorite quote is just spot on – you can count me in as well : )

  5. September 17, 2013 at 7:41 pm

    I agree the last line is a great summation. I think all that have read this, are possessed by the same feeling.

    • talkavino
      September 19, 2013 at 12:01 am

      Thank you!

  6. September 17, 2013 at 8:29 pm

    Absolutely, wine is meant to be shared with Friends that makes that memory even more special – AND you have just given me the idea for my post on Possession! Thanks!!! 😉

    • talkavino
      September 19, 2013 at 12:02 am

      Glad you like it! And I didn’t *give* you the idea – I *shared* it with you : )

  7. September 18, 2013 at 1:00 am

    ‘that right moment also includes the right people’ I’ll drink to that.

    • talkavino
      September 19, 2013 at 12:03 am


  8. September 18, 2013 at 7:21 am

    Your post got me thinking of the many times I’ve brought up that ‘special’ wine to share with good friends. The bottle that brought with it memories. It reminds me of how much we are excited to ‘invest’ in our friendships. Not monetarily but in importance and symbolism.

    • talkavino
      September 19, 2013 at 12:04 am

      That is what wine can do. The Magic of wine. Hopefully someone will come up with “magic” as the theme for the challenge.

  9. September 20, 2013 at 12:04 pm

    What a beautiful, inspired post, Anatoli! I definitely include myself in the last category too!
    Cheers and best of luck with your submission! 🙂

    • talkavino
      September 20, 2013 at 1:35 pm

      Thank you Stefano! Yes, I’m perfectly aware that you belong to the last category : )

  10. September 20, 2013 at 8:39 pm

    Beautifully written Anatoli, I would also fall into the last category, I have to admit I have a couple of bottles that I have not shared (not yet at least) I have had them for years and can’t bring myself to open them, Maybe this holiday season.

    • talkavino
      September 21, 2013 at 6:23 am

      Thank you for your kind words, Suzanne! Finding the right moment for those special wines is always difficult, I know that feeling…

  11. September 26, 2013 at 11:31 am

    NIce turn on the theme–yes, we are all possessed by the wine (as well as the reverse)> Nice job….

    • talkavino
      September 26, 2013 at 11:36 am

      Thanks Jeff. I’m sure feel possessed spending so much time with this blog and paying so much attention to the wine in general…

  12. October 1, 2013 at 11:29 am

    You captured my feelings on “special occasions” and wine so well… Sometimes I create the special moment just to open the bottle. The world can use more special moments… Thanks Talk-A-Vino!

    • talkavino
      October 1, 2013 at 11:35 am

      ahh, welcome and thank you very much for your kind words! sometimes it is very difficult to part with your “possessions”, but having the right company or the right occasion definitely helps.

  13. December 20, 2013 at 2:17 pm

    Reblogged this on mwwcblog.

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