Saturday, December 24, 2005

Christmas Eve

"Erin, come in here. There's something I want you to taste," my grandfather's wife said. "Our neighbor makes his own wine in his garage!"

"Ok," I called back in my best sing-songy fake voice. I gulped and headed into the kitchen. There it was in little jugs with homemade labels on the front - really cute. The thing is, I actually love stuff like this - in theory. But that doesn't mean that I want to be forced to drink the crap.

"My kids thought it was a lot better if you poured some Mountain Dew into it," she said. This will go down in the record books as one of the scariest things I've ever heard someone say referring to wine.

I poured myself a bit and swirled, out of habit, not necessity. Small sip. It was gross of course. Sweet and syrupy - kinda like an Oloroso Sherry, but obviously not as balanced. Everyone gathered around and started pouring themselves little tastes of it, then splashed Sprite into their glasses and declared that, well damn, that was pretty good!

My favorite uncle leaned into me and muttered, "So, are you going to review this wine?" into my ear. I smiled the sly smile that I keep reserved for only those who would actually appreciate it, raised my left eyebrow and said, "I don't think there's a category for Concord grapes." He grinned.

Family is great, and even better when there's at least one person in the bunch who gets you.

Merry Christmas, everyone.


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