# of divers

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Introducing Wineoceros Wednesdays

Following a weekend locked up in my domestic fortress on scholastic lockdown, I managed to survive the completion of my level 2 Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET) examination.

 Because I'm somewhat of a masochist when it come to academic discipline (and assuming all went nice and pretty with the testing), I'm now set to advance to level 3, which will bring me that much closer to becoming a professional 'Wineoceros'.
Although, I'm still contemplating as to when I can legitimately add the title 'Wineoceros' to my CV, business cards, etc.

Which brings me to Wineoceros Wednesdays*. I do hope you'll take interest in this upcoming segment. It's for you (assuming you're a consumer of wine), and for me (being an outright wine souse, and very much needing to study).
I have learning pangs hankering to select specified wine terminology and translating the unexplainable into the explainable. I'm longing to create exotic wine and cheese pairings using my cheese expertise, and finally, I've grandiose visions of pounding the pavement to make a pitstop at every wine bar within my immediate periphery for a miniature review.
In doing so, I intend to: 
taste a lot,
read a lot,
write a lot,
scrutinize wine labels to no end,
watch wine related movies,
travel to local wine regions,
make more wine with my human hands,
and of course, I shall continue to taste wine.

From the sloughiest of canned grape juice, to the finest in the French Bordeauxsphere, aka the Wine Capital of the World, all in the good name of higher education.

Yes, traveling the world over, one ISO standard wine tasting glass at a time.
Come along now, there's a lot to be said, and much to brush up on.

It will be just like a good ol' country safari,
a wine country safari.
*feel free to simply call it Wine Wednesdays for brevity's sake

Friday, March 22, 2013

Dragon Tales

...and now for your lighthearted amusement,
I invite you to have a rest.

Feel a smitch of the wanderlust,
and let's play pretend.

 Escape to the place in your head where things are far more interesting.

Where the great ancient animals and flying beasts reside.

That floaty spot somewhere between fantasy and reality

in the sheltered company of a friend who knows your innermost secrets through the dustiest corners of your addled soul.

A sanctuary where the summer dangles beneath a lattice-white, clouded sky. 

where you can safely take flight upon the wings of change.

and flyaway, faraway North, to a wintery kingdom,

to nestle within the safe harbor of a frostbound obsidian.

and should your dragon give you flame or smoke along the way,

catch him swiftly behind a spirit glass,
like a trapped foxglove fairy.

Tell the creature to speak his secrets, and you'll return him from whence he came.

For dragons are easily-affected creatures,
and perfectly suited for fancy daydreams.

Fairy tales are more than true.
Not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be defeated.
~Neil Gaiman

What is your dragon, and why haven't you conquered it?


Tuesday, March 19, 2013

MYTH Masque 2013 - The Majesty Continues

You'll have to excuse me, but it seems I've my hands tied in a bit of a pretzelknot these days. 

It's the sort of busyness where you find the coffee creamer housed in the kitchen cabinet instead of the icebox the following morning. The kind where one reaches into that abyss of a Mary Poppins-like handbag, searching for that cellular device, only to return with a pocketbook, accompanied by a blank stare into it, contemplating all the while why you reached for it to begin with.

Do I need a business card?
Am I paying for something?
How many more coffees am I away from that 10th complimentary cup?

Now I'm not here trying to get into a pissing match to determine which one of us is the busiest, but I will say that my time is largely occupied these days.

As to the whyness of it, it's because I much enjoy being busy, and at the moment the busyness involves much newness. Brilliantly delightful newness. 

You see, I've been commissioned to work for MYTH Masque.
MYTH is a high fashion, high fantasy, highly elaborate Masquerade ball seething with a menagerie of exotic characters of legend and lore.

Perfectly fitting for a laladreamer, I say.

It's the sort of fancy place where images such as the following are conjured:

 Photo Credit: Erich Sayers

Photo Credit: Kelli Sweet 

Photo Credit: Jerry Abuan

The show-stopping event is set to take place at the spectacular Vibiana Cathedral, home to LA Fashion Week, and it's certain to be an eyecandied spectacle to behold.

You'll have to excuse my blatherings here as I set off to a delightfully wicked realm of tale-telling, in a land where mythological characters from the far corners of middle earth are summoned to the grand and otherworldy gathering. 

An evening saturated with a savory, multihued crew of nighthawks, ready for a nuit blanche of sorts.

An evening known to court mystery and unexplainable bits of madness.

Photo Credit: Daniel Bergeron

Complete with an absinthe-minded, green faery, 
La Fée Verte,

Photo Credit: Lee Brubaker

an eight foot tall rocking unicorn, 

Photo Credit: Chiaroscuro Fotografia

living dolls,

Rococo rockstars,

and a black-horned, mythical beast to warmly welcome you to all of it.

Photo Credit: Daniel Bergeron

Of course, a grand carousal is never complete without the belle of the ball. 

Meet Erin Layne, MYTH Creatrix and Event Producer. 
A woman truly turning her dreamworld into reality. 

I warmly invite you to stretch your limits to the outer reaches of your fantasies.

Digital Artwork by Denise Sciacca

You can do so by paying a visit over to the MYTH Masquerade Facebook page. Take a liking to the page, and you shall be rewarded with rich, visual wonders, extraordinary tales of high fantasy, lore, and deliciously dark decadence from the sumptuous affair. 

It's also another place I'll be making use of my own magical powers.

Keep a close eye out for the Silvertongue Sorceress.

A most gracious thank you. 

Claim your passports to the sumptuous affair


Friday, March 15, 2013

Whiskey Business

Jack Daniels is a bourbon

Only whiskey with a Kentucky origin can be called bourbon.

Bourbon is distilled in Bourbon County

William Wallace is seven feet tall!

Myths! Falllacies! Uncertainties! Lies!


Who brought whiskey to America?

This is certain to be an endless debate 
(and a topic you may wish to avoid around Irish and/or Scottish gatherings of sorts).

whiskey/whisky? tomato/tomäto?

There are many myths and confusion surrounding the whiskey/bourbon debate.

For clarity,

Whiskey is defined by Dictionary.com as 'an alcoholic liquor distilled from a fermented mash of grain, barley, rye or corn, and usually containing from 43 to 50 percent alcohol'

While Bourbon is defined as 'a whiskey distilled, chiefly in the US, from maize, especially one containing at least 51 percent maize and aged in charred white-oak barrels'

American Bourbons

The two are often used interchangeably.

I must at this time interrupt myself to seek permission for a bit of storytime. Permission granted? Yes?
Why thank you kindly!


Once upon a time, descendants of European countries (including the Irish and Scottish) set sail to sea (say it 5x fast) to find America.

They brought with them the process of distillation (a concentration of alcohol via vaporization and condensation), and it is said that they toted more alcohol than water as they set forth to the new world.

As all settled in the new 'This Land is My Land', the resident Native Americans were introduced to the process of distillation allowing their fermented fruits to lend themselves to future alcoholism.

Barley, rye, and wheat were the key ingredients for creating the distilled spirit. Seeing that we had little barley and vast amounts of corn available as natural resources, maize soon replaced wheat in the process. Thus revealing the birth of whiskey in America as the adored lovechild of corn, rye, wheat, and a charcoal barrel aging process.

The answer to 'How do you spell whisk(e)y?'

The answer is... both ways
whisky is from Canada, Japan, Scotland or Wales
while whiskey indicates that it originates from Ireland or America

For the record, whisky is the correct American spelling according to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms decree created in 1968. Nevertheless, many distilleries had been producing the goodstuff for quite some time using the letter 'e', and elected to avoid this, which is why you'll find both spellings in the United States, or what I like to call 'cowboy country'. 

We seem to enjoy making things complicated around these parts. Henceforth, America's aversion to the metric system.

So Bourbon is simply the name for American whiskey. It does not have to be distilled in Bourbon County, Kentucky. It can be distilled anywhere in the United States.

That being said, should you ever set foot into a bar and are served Jack Daniels when ordering bourbon,  I suggest you quietly leave. A good bourbon should stand on its own. If you do enjoy bourbon and coke however, order it with Jack in lieu of a top-shelf variety. Spend your hard-earned moneybucks elsewhere.

Being armed with this knowledge, it is now your duty to drink whiskey (responsibly of course!)

a whisky fueled vehicle?

I demand it

The villagers have spoken.
She's gone aw'rye!

I'll take mine in a standard whiskey or sherry glass.
Neat-o, with a wee side of room temperature water, and a straw to pick up just a few droplings.
Merci beaucoup.

Cheese Tip:

Tastecheck the Midnight Moon Chevre, a goaty from California's very own Cypress Grove. Its sweet toffee finish paired with the oaky and caramel smoothness of a Four Roses Bourbon is a toothsome delight.

You mustn't forget the dark chocolate.

The polyamorous marriage of these three magical treats combined is a certain bliss of another kind...

Enjoy the weekend my friendfolks.

Don't forget to throw thunderbolt smiles at those who try to stand in your pathway.


Monday, March 11, 2013

Monday, Monday

It's time for a good day.

Love. Luck.

Kisses and Cake.

What's that you say?

It's not your birthday?

Have a heaping slice of the Monday cake anyways.

It's time to start doing more of what you want,

and less of what responsibility suggests.

Take two slices even.

It will be our littlest secret.

Enjoy the Monday'isms.


Friday, March 8, 2013

If ever there was a Friday

For smileyfacing

for skipping

for kite flying

for closing your eyes while riding a bike

for a good push on a swing

for nature exploration

for pacifying that curiosity

for learning to juggle

for meeting your neighbors

for starting a workout routine

for writing a letter

for adventure seeking

for taking a wandering walk

for remembrance of fond things past

Let that day be today

A jar of stars

For you, for yours.

Friday happies

Have a lovely weekend, lovelies.

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