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August 28, 2014updated 02 Nov 2022 12:15pm

Never pimp your wine

By Thierry Dessauve

One of the most inane things a grown up man can possibly say – even more so than “We are going to invade Iraq because it possesses weapons of mass destruction” – comes down to this.

“I cannot afford to drink the wine because it is now so very expensive.”

This kind of utterance is understandable if we do not own the wine in the first place and have to go out and buy it. However, when the person sounding off has already procured the wine long ago, why wouldn’t he be able to afford to drink it?

If anyone were able to broach the bottles, wouldn’t it be our man of the incongruous pronouncement? What could possibly prevent him from realizing the grape dream?

What the poor thing is actually saying is that the wines, having risen so much in monetary value, have made him give in to the temptation of selling out instead of drinking up. This is a slippery road of no return. I’ve observed many otherwise sensible men giving in to this type of financial “blackmail.”

Our man has simply become consumed by the carrot of dangling dollar, or swirling sterling, placed in front of his greedy eyes. He is no longer able to see things clearly because his line of vision has become blocked by money.

If he continues down this ignominious path, he will end up completely corrupted like Robert Mugabe (who got his start this way many vintages ago).

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I accept there may be exceptions where instead of drinking the wine, the owner might want to realize a sizeable windfall instead.

These would include:

– Contributing to your favorite charity
– Sending the children to an over-priced school
– Making a down payment for the Maserati Alfieri concept car
(deliverable in 2016)
– Providing for a crippling divorce settlement
– Investing in a new love interest

The above scenarios aside, “I cannot afford to drink the wine because it is now so very expensive” is just a huge cop out. It is a betrayal of love (assuming the person loved wine in the first place).

So, don’t get sucked in by anyone indulgent enough to speak that near idiotic refrain. It’s hogwash that smells worse than doggy pooh.

Instead of heaping sentimental condolences such as, “I fully understand your predicament,” or worse still, “I would do exactly the same thing in your position,” confront the man’s obsession for money with an ultimatum for wine (I leave you to find more elegant words than my anger will permit).

If a person truly, sincerely loves wine, there is no better way to show it than to uncork the bottle, pour out several generous glasses, and spread the cheer around.

When you are the owner of a great wine, behave like one. Throw caution and the cork to the wind.

Never, ever pimp your wine.

See more of Ch’ng Poh Tiong’s work at,,,,

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