Thursday 3 October 2019

That which makes me pour

An odd thing happened this week. I poured myself a second – or was it a third? – glass of wine. I looked at it. And then I poured it back into the bottle.

Was this abstemiousness? Parsimony? Senescence? (Or have I just suffered a bad case of orotundity?)

Why did I pour it in the first place? Well, it’s that automatic hand again, the one which always moves to take another handful of nuts, another crisp from the packet and another glass from the bottle.

I could, perhaps should, have drunk it, of course. When you pour a glass of wine, you feel you’ve made some kind of commitment to it. I’ve started, so I’ll finish. It’s a bit like beginning a cycle on the washing machine; God knows what’s going to happen if you just terminate before completing the process. 

But when it was sitting there, I just looked at it, and thought… no. And I carried bottle and glass into the kitchen and carefully, over the sink, poured the wine from the glass back into the bottle.

What else might I have done? Some people could have just thrown it away, I suppose. But that’s such a waste, of wine and of money. There’s a couple of quids’ worth of wine in that glass. I’m not made of money. And, despite the osmosis which must have taken place over the years, I’m not made of wine.

Is it a sign of age not to finish a glass that you’ve poured? I’ve put in quite a bit of practice at this drinking malarkey over the years, and thought I had it cracked. But then, I’ve also started making involuntary noises when I put on my shoes. Is a failure to anticipate consumption a similar indication of the encroaching years?

Of course some people might positively flaunt it as impressive self-control. Look at the way I can pour out a glass of booze, look at it, then pour it back again. I don’t need to drink another glass. Dependent, me? Clearly not. Even if I am already thinking about tomorrow night.

Because by pouring it back into the bottle, I would have enough for the following evening. I hate that thing of drinking 2/3rds of a bottle. Because when you hold the bottle up to the light next day, you see there’s only 1/3rd of a bottle left, and what can anyone realistically do with that?

So there could be an element of forward planning involved here. There must be a Biblical parable about keeping stuff back for the next occasion. Something about loaves, or talents, or indeed bottles of Campo Viejo.

That must be it, then. Now it sounds rational. Nothing to worry about. Move along.


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