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Let’s Revisit a Couple Things While I Enjoy a Red Blend

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Revisit a thing or two

Before I move to single subject posts, I want to revisit some of my past posts to tie up some loose ends.  My day job as a wedding photographer is picking up steam, so I need to start with these changes sooner rather than later so I can stay on top of both jobs.

The Reunion Post

Overwhelmed

Wow!  The response to my post regarding my teenage bullying and reunion experience was overwhelming.  There were comments left on the blog, I got phone calls, emails, and Facebook comments. Everyone was incredibly supportive and very kind.  Many former classmates were shocked or surprised and had no idea of the trauma I experienced and the pain I was in.  I told them and I will say it again… shame, insecurity and thanks Revisitembarrassment are great motivators to hide.  You can not see what I did not allow you to see.  And let’s not forget, it was a very different time back then.

Not the only one

But there was something else that happened.  I received several comments from others that shared a bit of their own pain. “As I read your story I felt like I was reading about myself.”  or “I, too, was bullied but for different reasons. It was so painful, but I too got through it.  Glad you did too!.”  Those are paraphrases but you get the drift.  My point is that there were many of us in that same place and we made it through. And that is a great thing.

The take-away from all of this is not profound or all that surprising.  It is merely that people (adults and children alike) can and will be very cruel. There are folks being bullied and tormented all around us and we may never know it.  You do not have to be their “best friend” but always be the “best” friend you can be.  Be the best sibling you can be.  Be the best parent you can be.  You never know what affect your heart and your kindness has on a person.  It could be enough to give them hope, feel better about themselves for a day or a week or even save someone’s life.

A little BIG Thing

Razor blades are super expensive. And so is the razor itself.  What a racket!  If you are buying the nationally recognized brands like Gillette or Schick at a retail store you are paying roughly $8.00 to $15.00 per razor and $3.00 to $5.00 per blade. So the first thing you need to do is STOP doing that!  There are at least two online companies that can save you lots o’ money.

 I use Harry’s.

And I love, love, love them.  Been using for over a year and their razors are perfect for me.  Now I do not shave every day, so I get an auto-shipment harry's just once a quarter but if I need more sooner, I can order more or if they pile up and I can pause.  Note:  You do not need to sign up for a plan but you will save a bit more cash that way.  Yes, Harry’s is designed for men’s shaving needs but just because it looks a tad masculine would not stop me if I was a woman looking for a cheaper, better blade.

Price

The most Harry's bladeyou will pay for a blade from Harry’s is $2.00.  And if you spend $10.00 your order ships for free!.  And if you want to get a trial which includes a razor, a blade and a sample of the shaving gel you can get that for FREE.  Just pay $3.00 shipping and handling.  There is just one caveat…. you do have to sign up for an auto ship plan.  BUT that does not start for two weeks so you can try the blade and if you like it…. great you are all set.  If you do not like it then cancel before the first shipment leaves the warehouse.

Revisit Dull

Now how do you make each blade stay sharper longer…. The same as you do with your knives by keeping them dry in between shaves.  Shall we revisit what to do – dry means:

  • NEVER store your razor in the shower or other damp location in your bathroom.
  • ALWAYS completely dry your blades with a dry towel.
  • NEVER store your razor in the medicine cabinet where it can rub against other objects and does not have free flow of air around the blade.
  • ALWAYS allow to the blade to air dry further after you dry it with a towel.

    keep it dry
    Keeping it dry

I store mine in the toothbrush holder that is part of my bathroom wall.  Keeps it upright and a free flow of air all around it.  By doing so my blade can last for months. Again I do not shave everyday, so for those that do you should be doubling the life of your blades by doing the above.

 

Buying Wine at your Grocery Store

Sometimes, in a pinch you need a bottle of wine and you have none at home or none at home that is what you need.  You have no time to order online nor go to your favorite wine store.  So when you stop for a carton of milk and a dozen eggs, you meander to the wine section to see what they have.  First and foremost, remember that everything in a grocery store pays for placement.  Don’t think that just because it’s on the eye level or top shelf, it’s the best.  Someone paid for that position.  Second, grocery stores are filled with a lot of “mass market” wine.  Typically, a mass market wine is made in super large volume with a goal to taste the same year after year after year.   Many mass market wines also have sugar added.  YUCK!.

Stick with what you know

This is not a time to be adventurous.  If you came in looking for a California Chardonnay, stick with that.  Stay in that state and that grape variety.  Washington State Chardonnay is VERY different than California grocery storeChardonnay.  California Pinot Noir is very different than Oregon Pinot Noir.  Stick with what you know.  Look for a wine you have had before is always the best place to start.

Price

Be willing to spend at least $15.00. Cheap is not always bad, but with wine it probably is.  Skip anything under $10.00.  Even if it has a pretty label or a clever name… move on.  The label and naming is a marketing tool just like any packaging.  Next look at the selling or sale price. A good bottle of wine does not need a clever descriptive name to sell itself.  And then there are the grocery store inflated prices “before a mark down”.  There is not a MSRP on wine.  There is a fairly standard mark up but it is never what the store shows as the “full” retail price before the sale price.

More to look for

Next, make sure that somewhere on the label is the vintage year.  A wine without the vintage year is wine that has juice from multiple year’s harvests… that is not necessarily a bad thing but with so much mass market wine on these shelves, I would steer clear.  Next, read the label on the back of the bottle and look for words that describe the wine.  However, the word “dry” is tricky.  Dry is relative to many wine drinkers so just because it says it’s a wine wine dry does not mean it will feel like the Mohave Desert in your mouth.

Flavor Descriptors

So look for taste descriptors.  If you like wines that are citrusy look for that word in the description.  I am not a fan of white wine that tastes like grapefruit… so I steer clear of any wine that uses that term in its description.  Because grapefruit is a common taste in many Sauvignon Blanc wines, I always avoid buying those as well.  Words/phrases like solid structure or perfect balance generally mean it falls in the middle and not to dry, sweet, fruity, acidic, etc.  It should sound like it tastes good.  Will you get it right every time?  Probably not.  But keep trying.  The more you try the more you learn and will make better choices in the future.

The Federalist Honest Red Blend 2014

 

The Federalist Revisitedgrocery receipt

This is a wine that I bought at my local Harris Teeter.  This is a great example of a wine I would buy at the grocery.  The tag on the shelf said the price of the wine was $23.99 but it was on sale for just $15.99.  I am calling bull on that. If it was an actual sale price wouldn’t that be reflected on the receipt like the raisins I bought at the same time.  As you can see it was not.  Approximately $16.00 is what it is sold for most everywhere especially wine stores.

Placement

This wine was on the second shelf from the top but surrounded by nothing but mass market wines from Ménage à Trois and Apothic.  Both of these wineries used to make a balanced, decent red wine that was very popular.  That popularity caused them to be purchased by large wine conglomerates who made them into mass market wines.  I can’t drink either one anymore.  But in the middle of that mess was The Federalist.

Descriptors

The Federalist Honest Red Blend 2014 is easy to drink. It is a deep,deep red in color.  I would describe it as jammy (lots of fruit but not sweet).  Bing cherry and other dark red fruits are present with a hint of chocolate in the finish.  For me this is a cocktail wine not a dinner wine.  I enjoy this wine but Gary is not a fan of jammy wines so he is a pass on this one.  Fortunately, I did not buy it for him.

Lastly… I know it seems strange that Abe Lincoln would be on a bottle named The Federalist.  It seems to me that the winemakers needed just one more president and honest Abe… won the coin flip.

 

Moving Forward

After careful consideration, I have decided to start posting more frequently towards the end of next week.  This will be

revisit
Send me an email not snail mail.

the last weekly post.  Now regarding the post email notifications, to make this easier on us all I need to make an assumption that you will not mind getting an email from me each morning when I post… up to 5 days a week.  Again, shorter posts, single themed.  For those that only want one email from me each week, I need to hear from you.  I ask that you send me an email from the email address you used to subscribe and just put WEEKLY in the subject and send it to me.  I will move to to the Weekly email list.  My email is rick@strongcoffeetoredwine.com.  Please do it now so you do not forget.  If I do not get an email from you, I will assume that you are ok with an email in the morning when I post up to five days a week (monday-

friday).  Please do not unsubscribe because of this….  please allow me to move you to a weekly email list.  Thanks

I have also themed each day to help me stay focused.  We will have:

The Monday Munch:  Food, Recipes, Cooking Tips… think of me as your gay Martha Stewart even though I have never been to prison nor am I currently hanging out with Snoop Dogg.

If it’s Tuesday, CHARLESTON:  My adopted hometown has become all the rage with its history, incredible food scene, and a top location as a tourist hot spot.  So I will review restaurants, events, finds and things we do and love.

Wine on Wednesday:  This day is wine all day all the time with reviews, compare and contrast, shopping tips, etc.  All in time to get to the store for before the weekend.

Thoughtful Thursday:  This is a day of Ponderings, Thoughts, Lists and things that are on my mind.

Free4All Friday:  This will be a catch all day that can be whatever excites me and/or something that needs more attention from earlier in the week.  This will also include household hacks and tips and of course,  little BIG Things.

 

See you all next week.

 

Cheers,

rick

 

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