It was accepted "knowledge" that the mysterious, lost civilization of the Maya had predicted the end of the world. Or maybe just of humankind and life as we know it. WAS. It was a "known" fact - that is, until some clever archeologist or anthropologist or teenaged spelunker happened to come across more Mayan calendar stone tablets that contradicted the previous belief system, and actually continued on with time and life. Wonderful.
My mother told me years ago, in a conversation about the "end-times-signs" in the book of Revelations, that most generations of humankind have thought (or worried, or hoped..) that the world would end with them. That they were SO important that certainly nothing would remain upon their departure from this realm. An interesting perspective, I was still more the type to read Fingerprints of the Gods, and sit around a coffeeshop table discussing things like Quatzequatel and the immenent end of the Mayan calendar. As the months become years, which in turn become decades, and the date approaches, it's interesting how little people are actually talking about it any more.
What is this new discovery of "more calendar"? Evidentally it is like a future civilization finding a paper calendar from, say, 1999. They would notice that the last day, presumably ever for this culture, was December 31st, 1999. "Oooooooh $hi+", they might say, there are NO DAYS after the 31st of December on the American calandar! But we know, as surivors of the infamous "computer crash that almost happened" and the other unspeakable events of that sureal era, that life, liberty, and the pursuit of technology did not end on that day at all. There was another calandar available at a thing we used to have called Book Stores, and it detailed an era being ushered in called the 2000s. So the Mayans simply ran out of room on a piece of stone to continue mapping the future, and had to find another, similar, suitable rock on which to keep going.
Great! So the world isn't ending? Or is it? Let's still freak out a little, right? It's more fun to have something to worry about, and a reason to drink a little more, so in that spirit, how about a quick Vino Bucket List from the resident Somm, just in case we only have a few more days of existance? Horray! The following are some wine experiences, in no particular order, that anyone who enjoys wine should try before to aliens decend upon earth from Nibiru / Planet X as we are aligned with a black hole and are dragged, kicking and screaming, into the fourth dimention, where all wine will taste like vintage Bordeaux and it won't stain your teeth...
In no particular order:
Port. Depending on your level of experience, try a vintage port, or an older port (30 or 40 year). Otherwise, just try port. It's a fortified wine, originally from Portugal, fortified with liquor so that it wouldn't spoil about shipping it overseas (back in the day). It's thicker, woodier, and sweeter than most wine you may be familiar with, but it is worth trying. It may just become your new favorite.
South American Pinotage. This wine is not usually very good, but in my experience, one out of a hundred is awesome, and all of them are unlike anything else you've ever tried. Usually reasonably priced, this is a cheap new wine experience.
Australian Shiraz blended with a small percentage of Viogner, the aromatic, white grape varietal. They do this style occasionally in France as well, but the Australian examples are typically better and much more affordable.
Try expensive California Cabernet side by side with cheap California Cabernet. See if you like the pricier one better. Stay within comfortable price points for yourself. If $40 is a lot to you, do a $40 bottle next to an $8 bottle. If 2012 has been a little better to you, this experience is enhanced by pinning a $20 bottle against a $100 bottle. A couple suggestions spanning both price categories: Rodney Strong Cabernet again Silver Oak Napa; Sterling Cabernet against Chimney Rock; Beringer Cabernet against Beringer Knight's Valley Cab.
Alsacian wine. Try a wine from this famed region between France and Germany that has changed hands beterrn the two several times throughout history. They produce great red wines also, but their whites are the most special. Gewurtztraminer and Pinot Blanc are my two favorites from this region, but there are some beautiful Rieslings as well. Late harvest dessert wines from this region are also a treat.
Prosecco and sorbet. A reader kindly "informed" me that this is "simply a twist on a bellini", but specifically Prosecco (not champagne, or moscato, or domestic sparkling, or cava) and sorbet (especially mango, or raspberry) is incredible. Let it melt half way and then enjoy.
Icewine, from Niagara, Canada. These grapes are not picked, and are left on the vines for months longer than they rightfully should be. They dry out, concentrating the sugar, and they freeze, changing the chemical composition slightly as well. When they press them for juice, the result is dessert in a glass. A must try.
Other "must try" wine experiences to me include aged Rioja Riserva, Chinese red table wine, and Manoschewitz.
So, is the world ending in 3 days? There is no longer "concrete" evidence to support that it will, but sane, progressive thought would indicate that none of us will ever truly know when the world, or our species, will cease to be, because at that same time we will all cease to exist. At least pysically. One thing that I do know to be true, however, is that we are living in a holographic universe, of which this earth and everything herein is a part. I do know that a hologram is structurally sound, and that when one most minute part of it si changed, that it changes the whole thing. I also know of a facet of quantum science called the Observer Effect, which has proven that matter of all types only holds patterns and acts predictablly when it is being "observed". There is further scientific evidence that supports the existance of fourth, fifth (and upward) dimentions. I also have been taught that we currently only use roughly a tenth of our brain.
The point of all this is that there is more than meets the eye, and that there are certainly powers at play. The universal consciousness exists within you, observing life that has entered your soul and spirit's orbit, and you are here for a reason and purpose. This world will end when it is supposed to in the scheme of everything, and will likely open doors to a much brighter, positive, prosperous, happy world and future for you and yours. What you believe in your heart and mind will materialize into truth and being.
Please enjoy everything on the wine bucket list over the course of the next three days, however, just in case.
Cheers! Cory "the wine guy" Warfield
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