Wine (a cautionary tale)

I poured a glass of wine and then returned to the slightly over-ambitious cooking project underway (sesame-crusted marlin steak with steamed broccoli and cauli and red leicester cheese sauce — only over-ambitious because it involved doing everything all at once (including washing up when I discovered I didn’t have basic implements like saucepans and wooden spoons), and because I’ve never before cooked (or eaten) marlin (bought on impulse with no clue what it would be like), nor made cheese sauce. But it was fine. Actually it was lovely. And for someone who is addicted to complex carbs, a surprising lack of craving for starchy accompaniment.)

So, after a digression of a few minutes, with many sub-digressions, not unlike the above parentheses, I returned to my wine to find a small fly floating in it. A tad larger than your common or garden wine-seeking black fruit fly, and stripey, but presumably a drosophila of some kind. The alcoholic kind, it seemed.

I fished it out (no pun intended, but by now you’ll have forgotten that I was cooking fish, or at least I had, so even if I’d thought of the phrase at the time, I wouldn’t have been aware of the pun; the pun (which, please be assured, was really not intended) arises only now with hindsight and the benefit of reading back through what one has written and editing or augmenting or clarifying or deleting it, which is a capability I would very much like to have with the spoken word also (except that no-one would then be able to follow what I was saying due to my propensity to insert vast parentheses (and sub-parentheses) in medias res (not to mention gratuitous Latin, but let’s not mention that lest we lose our way)), and (after checking, re-checking, and still not being entirely sure that I’d closed the same number of parentheses that I’d opened) I’d have to recap. QED.)… Where was I? Ah yes. I gently lifted the fly from my wine. It began to move drunkenly on my finger. Not dead then. Now, some people would have killed the thing there and then for the heinous crime of wine invasion, but I’m a softie so I deposited it gently out of harm’s way, took another gulp of what was still a reasonably subtle, pleasant and drinkable Californian chardonnay (makes a change, especially for Gallo), and started to serve my dinner.

After dinner I did a few more bits of washing up, and again returned to my wine to find the same bloody fly in it once again. (Ok, I can’t say for absolutely sure that it was the same fly, as although I’m not a speciesist, they probably do all look the same to me, though I’m sure they’re all really nice and I don’t believe any of the stereotypes etc, it’s just that most of my friends are humans rather than fruit flies, but don’t get me wrong I have nothing against fruit flies as long as they keep themselves to themselves and don’t take our jobs, and sure I wouldn’t want my daughter to marry one but it’s not a speciesist thing, I just think we should stick to our own kind…). Anyway, blatantly it was the same one, back for more. Observing more closely this time, I saw it was not floating but swimming, not drowning but waving, lazily, probably quite happy there.

There was a point to this story, but it has been bracketed away. I got so carried away interjecting with gay abandon (absolutely nothing intended whatsoever) that the paultry substance of this tale has been utterly swamped by the deliberately meandering style. Let that be a lesson to you. If a fly’s been swimming in your wine, don’t drink it afterwards. There must be strange stuff in their wee.

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