This has nothing to do with waitressing and a whole lot to do with wine writers. Specifically, self-serving, self-obsessed, self-congratulatory wine writers named Alice Feiring.
It's funny, this love/hate thing I have with Alice. We see totally eye-to-eye in our almost psychotic hatred and fear of the New World, in our edict that small and rustic is never small and rustic enough, and in our overwhelming preference to drink something really weird and not necessarily tasty, over something that is ordinary but goes down easily.
In other words, if I were going to share a bottle of the spiky, peppered-bramble juice that is Pineau d'Aunis, it would be with her.
But between her outrageously self-important book, How I Saved the World From Parkerization (she didn't), and this month's article in Saveur (specifically where she implicates herself in Il Buco's decision to place teeny Sagrantino producer Ruggeri on its wine list), I am very, very scared for Alice.
This woman is going to float off into the stratosphere with that enormous head of hers!
She's the egomaniacal Hindenburg, perhaps having passed even Donald Trump and half the Real Housewives of the OC on her ascent to sociopathy. Someone needs to load her down with more weight, say a reality check.
I propose that Alice shadow me on a Saturday night at my restaurant, enduring plaintive moans about there being no California on the list, or smart-ass retorts to my speech about our localvore menu such as "Well, then where's the Texas wine?" (Oh, please Jesus, let that just be a smart-ass retort and not an actual request.) I bet after a night of explaining that Cahors is where Malbec originated, not Argentina, and that it won't be anything like the tarry, oaky fruitbomb they know from the grocery store Mendozas, Alice will tear her own hair out and throw her hands up. There's a long long way to go, sister. You didn't save the world from anyone yet. You're a little less FDR and a little more Obama-first-90-days. Sure you want the job?
I appreciate that she keeps trying. And if there's a clown on our side vying for a drop in the dunk tank, so much the better. After all, we can't always hate on Robert Parker alone. That's shooting fish in a barrel.
So, thanks, Alice, for offering yourself up to some entertaining obloquy with your unparalleled claims to being the übergeek that will deliver us all from the tyranny of Wine Speculator and the populace's love of mass-produced, boring, hyper-regulated juice. You're kind of like the Bill Maher of wine. I appreciate you both, but you kind of embarrass the team sometimes.
Love the wine in yourself; not yourself in the wine.