Crime vs. wine

Ugni grapes growing in Cognac
Ugni grapes growing in Cognac

After I made the switch from covering general news, mostly crime, to covering lifestyles topics, mostly food and wine, I took a lot of ribbing from people who seemed to think I had hitched a ride on the gravy train. All misguided, of course. Reporting’s reporting no matter what the subject. You still have to look stuff up, figure out what’s new and get people’s names right.

And pressure? You ever print a cake recipe with double the amount of baking powder in it? Hell hath no fury greater than that of a person who just wasted 2 hours in the kitchen, friend.

Still, there’s no denying there are a few teensy disparities between my new and old beats.

Herewith are my Top 10 Differences Between Covering Wine and Crime:

10. When people see you driving up, they give you the electronic gate code instead of changing it.

9. People gather at wine events to open bottles, not throw them

8. Winery dogs will greet you, junk yard dogs will eat you

7. When someone tells you to put a cork in it they’re most likely expressing an opinion about wine bottle closures, not your rhetorical skills.

6. In crime, you need evidence of wrongdoing before opening a case.

5. On the wine beat you cover people at bars. On the crime beat you cover people behind them.

4.  In the wine world, “fining” easier on your wallet. (Eds note: What?) (Dear Ed: “fining” means filtering, finishing off process for wine. Also don’t make me explain my jokes.) 

3. It’s OK for wine judges to drink on the job.

2. “Hang time” refers to grape ripening, not punitive measures.

(drumroll, please)

1. On the wine beat you drink to learn more about your subject. On the crime beat you drink to forget it.

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