The Chilly Mistress Has Something To Teach Us
This last weekend at a gathering of friends, the issue of "Love" came bubbling to the surface. There was a cynic among us who assured his friends that love can not be measured, can not be observed and one cannot prove they feel love. What bothered him most was the cavalier way the term was thrown around, despite its transient and unresolved nature.
The conversation got me thinking about how people so often profess their "love of wine" and the differences between "loving wine" and "loving Ms. Right".
The difference should be obvious to anyone and if it is not then that person needs a crash course in the concept of "Consciousness". It is understanding the difference between loving wine and loving someone that should drive home the fact that Wine is a Chilly Mistress.
I happen to disagree in part with my friend. I think one's professed love for another person can be measured. I think we can measure it in the way the object of our loving feelings reacts to our confession of love and the acts we take on behalf of that love. The measurement of their reaction cannot be precise, it cannot be measured with a rule, but it can be evaluated in the same way we take the measure of man upon assessing his capabilities, his compassion and his morals.
Wine, on the other hand, never reacts to our love. It's cold in that way. Chilly. Wine neither spurns us or gives itself to us. It does not deflect our advances, embrace us, make long term plans to be with us, nor throws itself at us in wild fits of passion. It does nothing. For those of us who say they "Love Wine", this cold, sterile reaction by the object of our affection makes it a very chilly mistress.
Now, this all might seem like I'm just putting a shiny bow on the all too obvious. And surely that's true. But this coy little observation also serves to remind us wine lovers that if we really are looking for some sort of vital and profound meaning to life, we are not likely to find it anywhere near our love of wine, but rather in the presence of another person who can react, in some way, to our confessions of love.
However, I wonder if our love for the Chilly Mistress serves as a trainer for a future, more real, more permanent, and personified sort of love. I wonder if our "love of wine" trains us to look at something with greater care and greater interest. I wonder if the care and interest that we focus on the Chilly Mistress carries over to the way we look at a person for whom we profess to hold love. If it does, then my cynical friend perhaps should not be so concerned with what he sees as the cavalier way in which the term "Love" is thrown around—or at least the way it is applied to our appreciation for wine.