That’s not Merlot, or how I’m a shoo-in for mother of the year

3 May

Ding-dong, the witch is dead.  In case you’ve missed it, Usama/Osama bin Laden has left the building.  I have a grab bag of emotions: elation, relief, justice, sadness, worry…I’m sure I’m not alone with this.  It has been bizarre watching news reports of the people frenzy in the streets and ball parks of the U.S., juxtaposed with pictures of blood soaked rugs and reading the constant crawl about exploded skulls.

Is it even appropriate to celebrate something like this?  I don’t know.  But it also seems a little weird not to celebrate in some way.  So, we cracked open a nice Pinot Noir with dinner and decided to pour a little splash for the kids.  Don’t judge.  People in Europe make their kids have a night-cap so they’ll go to bed.  Think of it as organic Benadryl.  But this post isn’t about that…it’s about a great story in Hot Damn’s family lore.

When Hot Tub (that’s the boy child) was about four or five months old we were spending Thanksgiving at the beach.  At supper one night, four-year old Snakebite was going out of her skin to have a nip of the wine we had ordered with dinner.  She was being a real pain in the ass about it.  I finally gave her a tiny swig, knowing that she would be grossed out and just hush.  Instead, her eyes got as big as saucers, she licked her chops and exclaimed, “It’s sooo good!  What is it?”  So, we told her it was called Merlot. She prolly would have been happy to dust off the bottle, but we are responsible parents who aren’t into sharing our hooch.  Instead, we told her that if she really liked the good stuff that maybe she might be ready to start having full Communion at Church.  Since we are Episcopalian, you can just do it whenever you’re ready.  All week our brows were furrowed with concern as our budding party girl yammered on and on about getting some of that delicious wine at Church on Sunday.  Uh-oh.  What have we started?

On Sunday morning, Snakebite practically skipped up to the altar.  We were all kneeling, me with a baby asleep on my shoulder, when the Cathedral’s Dean was before us with the wine chalice.  Margaret was in the ready, set, go position to receive and he kinda gave me the quizzical eye and I gave the go-ahead nod.  She put her little mouth on the rim, took a long sip, an awkward gulp and then bellowed, “THAT’S NOT MERLOT!”  She was furious and felt duped.  I thought the Dean was going to fall over.

So back to our celebratory wine with dinner tonight.  Snakebite wanted no part of it because now she only likes Taylor’s Tawny Port…the Church wine.  This, people, is how you get your children to Church without complaint.  Please feel free to submit my name for the Mother of the Year award in honor of Mother’s Day this coming weekend.


6 Responses to “That’s not Merlot, or how I’m a shoo-in for mother of the year”

  1. jenn Weyand May 3, 2011 at 6:47 am #

    By the way, Napa’s Hall family vineyard is divine! And the wines are great too!

    • Jim Draper May 3, 2011 at 7:10 am #

      Charlotte Ann,
      That is one of the funniest things that I have ever read. Communion wine has always intrigued me and I have always considered Taylor’s Tawney Port, “the hair of the dog.”

      Alcohol is good for children. We were all raised on it.
      It only took a slight cough for mama to line us all up, put a peppermint ball in the bottom of a shot glass, fill it up with Jim Beam, and have us turn it down. It makes children get the sleep they need. There is an added benefit, when children sleep better, adults are happier and they say nice things to each other, keeping opinions to themselves.

      Tobacco is another remedy that is seldom used on children any more. I remember daddy smoking two packs of Kents a day. We would watch TV through drifts of smoke. I think that all that smoke preserved my skin, sort of like smoked salmon and I am approaching the golden years with
      taught supple flesh. Second-hand smoke also makes children not be so sticky and smelly.

      Keep up the good work, you ARE mother of the year. Pour them a taste, they will love you for it in their golden years.

      • Hot damn, Charlotte Ann! May 3, 2011 at 7:28 am #

        I am pretty certain that my immune system is tough as nails from the exposure my parents gave me to an ever present cloud of ciggie smoke. Even on road-trips, they would have a smoke-out with nary a crack in a window…they didn’t want to muss up Mom’s hair or waste all that good air conditioned air. And besides, my mother told me that it was “glamorous”. Oh, mother of the year! As a result, whenever I step into a smoking allowed bar, it’s like coming home. Especially if there is a brawl at the end of the evening.

    • Hot damn, Charlotte Ann! May 3, 2011 at 7:16 am #

      We are looking to be out there in September and have already discussed going. They sent me something last year about special things they do for Hall family members! Glad to get your thumbs up!

  2. Laurel May 3, 2011 at 7:26 am #

    I am HOWLING! I’m also uncertain what it says about my communitiy that we all know of a good vineyard that shares a name with one of our offspring.

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