The Chemistry of Good Wine 101
Great for date night, but also great for "nobody will ever love me" night.
He really should have been on his way. He had a date to keep; sweet Nancy Lee, prettiest redhead in all of West Redchester. And, having originally been a settlement of renegade Irish, there were an awful lot of pretty redheads in West Redchester.
And Ned DID want to see Nancy Lee. More, in fact, than Ned had wanted anything in a long long time. He was in love in a big bad way and he knew it the first time she’d said his name, just before leaving the bar. Words in his ears and his veins and his heart, and he’d been waiting to hear them ever since she sat down in front of him in Chemistry 101 all those years ago. Even Ned wasn’t dumb enough to think she remembered that, though.
High School Ned had been a series of sad stories all stitched together and then run through a grungy washing machine. But that was all years behind him; nowadays Ned was fit, rich, and pretty. And, to his eternal surprise, even a little charming. The next time he’d seen Nancy Lee, he’d been Cyrano and Christian all at once, and they had a date. Tonight. He even had the wine; he’d ordered six bottles of 2011 Gauthier Riesling, and gotten a good deal on the price. Still, that high school wedgie magnet still lived, forever insecure, in the back of Ned’s mind, and insisted that he sample a bottle; make sure it was good enough for sweet Nancy Lee.
And that’s where the trouble had started. The cork hadn’t been out but a moment when Ned caught a whiff of the white truffle and honeysuckle. His very first sip told him tales of green apples and Asian pears, guava and pineapples. That should have been enough, but then Ned figured there was no harm in taking a second sip, just to double check. And a third. It was really good wine. He was now forty minutes late for Nancy Lee. Was he late, and drinking, because he needed to sample the wine? Or was he late, and drinking, because he feared that for all of his improvements he was still not good enough for sweet Nancy Lee, and couldn’t bear her rejection?
That’s a weighty question, but one he didn’t much care to ponder. After all, he had five more bottles. And it was exceptionally good wine.
Somewhere across town, Nancy Lee, sobbed quietly in the corner of a bar where she’d thought she was going to meet that cute Ned boy, the one who’d sat behind her in Chemistry all those years ago. But he was nowhere to be found, and she was alone. She sighed. He must have noticed that she was pigeon toed. She ordered another glass of 2011 Gauthier Riesling (her favorite) and wondered if anyone would ever be able to see past that.