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Taking a Chance-Risking it All!

Just the other day someone was describing to me their idea of fun and adventure.  Yeah--sky diving.

They told me, "You just have to try it." But here's the problem I see with sky diving. You may only get one chance to "try" it, and for me folks, that isn't odds I'd bet on. If I were on a sky diving plane and it came time for me to jump, I think I'd kill the pilot before I'd agree to take the tumble. Because I know that if the jump didn't kill me, and believe me, it would, I am certain that the anticipation alone would cause cardiac arrest.

The other thing that would stop me from jumping, that is if the mere thought of crashing to the ground from 10,000 feet was not enough, is my face. Yeah, I have seen pictures and, believe me, on the descent down, your face begins to look a lot like a Neapolitan Mastiff pup. That pup face lasts just until your chute doesn't open, and then your face takes on a "Crap on a stick" appearance. 

With that being said, it is not to say that I won't take some risk. I am more than happy to put a hundie in a slot machine and sit back and pull the lever. But I like having both my feet on the ground when I do it. Sometimes when I find myself wanting to "push" the envelope, I'll even drink while I gamble. And then the most damage I can do is to the balance on my ATM slips. Believe me, I won't get too many pulls in with those dismal figures.

But don't get the wrong idea here.  I understand the thrill of the chase, the adrenaline rush, the uncertainty of the outcome.  It is exactly how a new, untried bottle of wine feels to me.

So, when I am hell bent for some high adventure, I drive my car really fast to our local distiller.  Sometimes, I don't even put my seat belt on until I hit the highway, just to add to the excitement. (Don't try this at home.) Then I grab a cart, hoping I will get the one with a loose wheel, as that adds a certain element of danger. The ride home feels like what I can only imagine the climb on Universal's Dueling Dragons must feel like. Oh, the anticipation! My sweaty hands are clenched around the wheel, hanging on for dear life. And the skin on my face is pulled tight by the shit eating grin that is now permanently etched on my face. Grrrr... I can hardly wait!

As you can see, I know all about risk. It is just that my idea of putting it all on the line is buying a bottle of wine I have never tried before.

But with every risk is a potential down side. You could possibly be in for the best ride of your lifetime, or perhaps not. You just never know. And sometimes, the worst will happen.  The ride won’t be at all what you’d hoped for. I'd imagine it to be a lot like the feeling you get when your parachute fails to open. But here's the deal with that.  You get another chance. You just gotta get back out there and hope you have one more E-ticket left.  You wait for your next ride (bottle) to come along and hope the wait won't be too long!

So, for your next ride, let me help you out a bit.  Imagine me telling you just before you go up in the plane, "Don't worry, I'll catch you."  If that sounds a bit too risky for your taste, let me offer up to you a great wine to try instead!

Borsao Garnacha-Spain
Three Mountains

This is an interesting wine at first swallow, but like many wines in this price point, it leaves you hoping for a little more. However, at around 13 bucks a bottle, not a bad value. Very spicy and a bit "tight", with juicy red and dark berry flavors. Serve it at about 59-60 degrees, for best taste.
I personally feel the finish is a bit short - meaning, I like a wine that opens up more at the end. However, with a price tag at a reasonable $13, it offers as good a value as one can find these days.  Try it for yourself and let me know what you think!


Here Comes the Bride!

I am thinking about changing my name. Years ago when I married husband number one and as luck would have it thus far, husband one & only, I can remember giving serious thought to just keeping my maiden name, but instead decided to hyphenate my maiden name with my married name. Still, I felt like quite the liberated woman. I wasn't about to just "give up" on my roots, no sir- that was my identity we were talking about. I can remember signing my name with flourish, thinking I'd show "them" that I was a wise, independent woman. And then Publix got those nifty little slide machines and everyone stopped writing checks and it just stopped mattering to me. And then somewhere, somehow along the way, I stopped using my maiden name altogether and it became just the D between the Mary and the Mead. Then a couple of kids later I changed my name once again and became just plain and simple, quite ordinary, M period Mead. But having just finished up devouring the NYTimes, Sunday Style, now I am not sure. Now I am left wondering what it would have been like for me had I stuck to my original plan and never dropped the maiden name. Would it have been confusing for my kids- us sporting different last names? Would everyone assume I was divorced and on the prowl- God forbid? Not that there is anything wrong with that, but since I was not and am not, would I have caused the other PTA moms to wonder? Could I have assumed that "other" woman role? I wonder how many of the brides listed in today's Time's will still be writing their last names out in long hand in say 15- 20 years. I wonder how many of the marriages will be intact. The New York Times wedding bann announcements sound like something out of an Emily Post book.  Sort of makes me want to don some gloves and sip me some afternoon tea! “Alexandra Jones and Ethan Carter III, were married Saturday at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart. The bride, Ms. Jones is keeping her name. The bride’s father, a former general partner with Lehman Brother's is now retired, living off what we all most recently lost. The bride’s mother is a psychiatrist in family practice in West Islip NY. The bride and groom met one day in a local post office where an elderly woman was asking for directions to the nearest restroom. After explaining to the elderly woman, that the US Postal service does not allow the public to use their restrooms, the future husband and wife graciously escorted the elderly woman to a nearby Starbucks. Six months later, at that same Post Office, the groom, who graduated magna cum laude from Yale and received a PhD in mathematics from M.I.T., got down on one knee and proposed to Ms. Jones”. Really, Mr. Groom? You have yourself a Ph freaking D and that is the best you could think of? And let's put this question out to the editors of the NYTimes, these announcements take up three pages of the STYLE section, is this necessary? Come on, people. Why don't the regular people get to submit their announcements? Here is what I want to see, “The bride, of Holly Hill, Fl, waited until she regained her figure after the birth of the couple’s second child to plan the wedding, which took place on Saturday at the local Golden Corral. The bride, in light of several failed marriages has elected to keep her second husbands name, as most of her children also carry that name. In attendance were both the bride and groom's children from their previous three marriages, in which all but one ended in divorce. The groom was dressed in a white suit, which was in high contrast to the orange color that he'd been most recently been seen wearing, courtesy of The Tomoka Correctional Facility. The bride attended Mainland high school for two years, but eventually decided she could still have it all with a G.E.D. The groom attended middle school in Eustis and it is unknown at this writing if he graduated. The bride was formerly employed at Turrie T Small in the lunchroom, up until its recent closing for failure to score above an F rating, and is currently unemployed. The groom is a sanitation engineer with the city of Daytona Beach. After a brief honeymoon at the Ichetucknee Springs campground, the bride and groom plan to make their home in Holly Hill with their collective seven children.  Now that's what I'm talking about.


Arresting Wine

Once the imprint from the cuffs wore off, and the horrid smell of that "holding cell" had dissipated, I had time to reflect on just what exactly happened to me at that concert Sunday night and all I can say is, "Blame it on the wine". The last thing I remember, right before all the commotion was Sweet Baby James singing, "How sweet it is to be loved by you".

And then I thought, "Release the hounds". Yeah, it's never a real good idea to wear your emotions on your sleeve or to let loose while under the influence!

Oh well, what is done, is done. I certainly can't "unring that bell" and frankly, I don't think I'd want to either! Besides, James was almost gracious about the whole thing and I think secretly if security hadn't intervened, well... let's just say, things may have been different.

But I thought I'd share with you the wine that almost had me wearing one of those orange jump suits with the words, "CORRECTIONS" on the back. It is my latest obsession, (Other than Mr. Taylor) a fine wine called Adobe Road 2005 Syrah. This stuff can be had for under $25 bucks (Wine Barn) and believe me, in that price range, it packs a punch (as witnessed on Sunday evening). Wine Spectator gives this wine 92 points- which is a range I am most happy to be found drinking in! This wine has got a lot of personality. It's rich with spices and deep luscious plum and blueberries. It is well balanced, but be careful, as it can certainly knock you off your balance when consumed in certain quantities. And based on my personal experiences, I’d have to describe this wine as a "Man Magnet". I mean, after all, I made out with James Taylor and that has never happened to me while drinking Jack and diet. I think that if you get the opportunity to try this wine out you may soon find yourself belting out, “Well I'm a steamroller baby. I wanna roll all over you. Yes I'm a steamroller for your love, babe ...  And only then ,will what happened to me make any sense!

Getting to second base with a Super Star!

Some things just don't end up turning out like you thought they would. Case in point, who'd ever of thought I'd meet James Taylor, let alone have a well, relationship with him? I know, right? Who'da thunk? Well, about part way through the concert, I sort of had a feeling; James was staring right at me, each and every time the rotating stage came my way, our eyes would lock. At first, I was like, Whoa, what is this? Is he staring at the people behind me? But it quickly became apparent to not only me, but most of the over 10,000 concert goers, that it was only me he had eyes for. Once the concert was over, he walked right up to me and put his arms out, as if to embrace me. The whole time, I am thinking to myself, "Is this real life" ? Then that little woman, what's her name...Ah, Carole something, anyhow, she flies past James sort of knocking him a bit and causing him to just get his one hand out to me. Of course, I immediately recognized how upset he was, missing the opportunity to really get to know me. But all the disappointment quickly drifted away once our skin made contact and our hands became joined, and I think we both knew...there was no going back. At the end of the "shake”, I immediately placed my just "shaken" hand up to my now heaving breast. And just like that- we sort of made out. Me and James Taylor. Wow. What a totally unexpected event. But then, suddenly, I heard a voice in my ear pulling me out of my dazed state, "Release the hand or we will use force". It sounded like it was coming from a bull horn. But still, my coming to was slow, as all I could hear at first was James whispering to me something about fire and rain.  Then I became aware of the bright lights coming towards me, but it took me a minute or two to fully recognize that the lights were actually the SWAT teams tactical lights.  Once fully conscious, I realized that I'd neglected to release Mr. Taylor's hand and by now, everyone was staring at us. Our make-out session had ended as quickly as it began. Ah, I did manage to get my phone number into the security guards hand; so hopefully, he'll call, ah, that is James, of course.