Sunday, August 11, 2013

Oenophilic observation

Humans have been fooling around with representational scratches and doodles for a bloody long time, but it's only within the last 5,000 years or so that people developed coherent drawing systems that represented spoken language.  In this sense, all of human (written) history and literature only goes back this far.

Of course, it's not as though no one said anything cool before then. Many cultures have handed down oral literature that goes back who-in-the-hell-knows-how-far. But a brief survey of the offerings reveals that precious little of this oral literature seems to have been composed in the total absence and ignorance of fermented beverages. Go ahead: I double-dog-dare you to try to find an ancient saga or epic tale that doesn't refer explicitly to wine, beer, or some other fermented alcoholic beverage.

In other words, human literary endeavor seems to have gotten started only after humans figured out how to ferment sugars into alcohol.  No beer, no epic.  No wine, no history.

Coincidence?  I think not.

Pardon me while I go off to enjoy a last glass of Burgundy.


  1. I'm thinking of becoming a full-time drunk. Maybe it will improve my writing. It might help me endure bullshit a little more. Or make me less aware of it anyway...

  2. I can't imagine being an academic without a little wine or scotch. Writing? Grading? Totally sober? Oh, hell no!