• Disclaimer: there is only a little bit about wine in this one

    I was driving on the freeway today, as I do every day. Heh, that reminded of Pinky & the Brain… “What are we going to do tonight Brain? Same thing we do every night… try to take over the world!!!”

    So, I was parked on the freeway in rush hour traffic, and I listened to comedy. Ah sweet comedy. I told a friend that I like to imagine giant glowing gummy bears wreaking havoc in the traffic. I could see them all multi-colored stomping and throwing cars everywhere, people saying eeeee gummy bears!

    It makes the traffic more enjoyable.

     

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    I was leaving work. The task today was teaching 50 people about Spanish wine. I’ve talked about aged Rioja wines a couple of times in past posts, but never about the whole country. I’m not sure I want to talk about it now.

    I kind of just want to ramble on about nonsense in an attempt to be humorous.

    The wine rules of Spain are similar to Italy in a bunch of ways. The aging laws are strictly enforced like in Italy. If the wine gets a particular classification it has to meet the aging requirements for said wine. One of the biggest differences is that Spanish wine producers typically age their wine until it’s ready to drink, often well over a decade.

    …but let’s not talk about that. Let’s talk about the time I flew to Beech Grove, Indiana to find the secret to the perfect macaroni and cheese *true story*. I didn’t know I was going to find this holy grail of mac and cheese, but I did. It all started when I was graduating high school. My father wanted me to stay with my uncle in Indiana to get a little business sense.

    Set the way back machine to a time before cell phones. I finished up public high school a semester early and I was encouraged to go to the Hoosier state for my final semester before college. My uncle was a man with ‘many irons in the fire’ as he liked to say. He had two full time airplane mechanics/pilots at the time with an average of ten jets at any time (bought them, fixed them up, and sold them for profit). He had two newspapers, a radio station, and a chemical plant among other things.

    I went ahead and flew to Indiana. I got off the plane and it was -12 (when I left it was 100 degrees with full humidity).

    My uncle always took me to his business meetings which were often at restaurants. One place we frequented was a breakfast buffet that cost $11. He always paid for everything. I felt bad so I would make three plates of food, and eat them all.

    The city of Beech Grove had three stop lights, and they all were hanging on wires in the middle of the streets. Salsa was in squirt bottles at Mexican restaurants, and my nephew didn’t know what an avocado was.

    Past times included basketball, the mall, eating, and bumper cars.

    I went to my uncle’s son’s house on a few occasions. It was in New Palestine a little off the beaten path. His wife often made mac and cheese, but she made it differently… Kraft + milk + cheddar. The first couple of times I was like what is this runny stuff, but then I found it to be the most amazing macaroni and cheese ever.

    So here I am soooo many years later, and I still crave it.

    Spanish wine is kind of like that.

    Bold, subtle, bracing, different, affordable, aged, weird, obscure, unknown, familiar, challenging, rare, and addictive in its own way.

    I went hunting albatross once. I used scuba gear, and spider monkeys. I would stand on the side of the boat in full scuba gear firing the monkeys out of a spider monkey surface to air cannon (you can pick them up at any surplus store). Each monkey held a net that it would spread out just as it approached the incoming albatross. When the monkey would grab one it dive-bombed to the ocean, bird in tow. I would jump off the boat, grab hold of an awaiting dolphin and we dived. The dolphin carried me under water at breakneck speeds, and with a leap out of water I would catch the falling monkey, albatross and all. I would then perform a squid mind transfer on the albatross. Upon complete mind transfer the squidbatross, dolphin, spider monkey and I would all play chess.

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    Editor: That is perhaps the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard.

    Author: More ridiculous than the wooly mammoth story?

    Editor: Okay, the second most ridiculous.

    Author: More ridiculous than the time a kracken attacked the LA marathon

    Editor: I will end you.

    Author: Wow, I didn’t see that one coming.