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So here we are, in 2013.  Surviving another end of the world scare (if you could call it that), we’ve transitioned into a new Year, rife with new beginnings (or more of the same ol’ same ol’ if you are one of my more conservative friends, I guess).  As many of you who follow along already know, I am still getting comfortable in my new gig, happy as Hell to have found a solid place to land here at The Party Source, and am humble and appreciative to be working with one of the best in the business, Ms. Mary Valle-Dorr, who prior to the past six months, had been my biggest nemesis.

Fast forward to now, and I feel like a lot of the crap I was feeling about the old gig is pretty much gone; I have bigger fish to fry as the adage goes.

So my goals this year have certainly shifted, and despite having to sort of reinvent myself professionally, I have rededicated myself to the business of wine.  I want to learn how to deliver the goods much better now that I am here at TPS, figuring out ways to better reach our customers, better inform our customers, and better serve our customers.  Learning how to more effectively utilize the tools we currently have at our disposal, such as email, Facebook, Twitter and the like.  Of course, the big plan is to kick off Party Source Web TV, a video show that features all of our departments, and all of our staff, doing what they do best – serving our customers and talking about what they love most – the art AND science of entertaining.

Pretty lofty stuff, right?

I feel pretty fortunate to have ended up here at TPS.  I was looking at a lot of other options.  Most of them involved relocating to other parts of the country.  I had sent resumés to places in Washington State, Indiana, Texas and New York.  I was thinking about opening my own distributorship.  I had even entertained the idea of getting back into the restaurant biz (that’s how desperate I was to change things up).  In the end, I wound up here at TPS, which I feel now was where I was headed all along.

Wine Reviewed: 23 (29 if you count those three I reviewed thrice each)

Wine of the Weeks: Franciscan Cabernet Sauvignon Stylus 2005.

Good news in the wine biz: Anything Hosemaster posted… (as always).  Charles Smith gets bigger.

Bad news in the wine biz:  Yellow Tail is having money woes.

Disturbing news in the wine biz: Not sure if this is good or bad – Guy Fieri is getting into the wine biz.

On the homefront: Wife ended up with another concussion.  I swear the good Lord must’ve made her skull out of metal, because the Wifey Concussion count is up to 13.  We were supposed to attend the wedding of a friend this weekend, but she hadn’t been feeling well and in her rushing around, must’ve blacked out and fell backwards, hitting her head pretty hard again.

There is nothing worse than coming home to find your wife lying on her back, completely unresponsive.  She has given me many close calls over the years.  I think that’s why my beard is graying.  It’s been a rough several months at home, with her sick, and the house seemingly breaking down little by little.  It’s not that I am crying about it – I mean, this morning I was listening to the radio, and the commentator was discussing a Chinese woman who survived the Chinese Cultural Revolution, forced to eat what amounted to shit sandwiches while interned in a re-education camp until she was exiled to America, and though penniless and uneducated, has become a successful tech purveyor, all through sheer will and determination.  She had it rough.  Stripped of everything, and yet she still succeeded.  I am thankful for what I have, believe me.  I’ve hit a rough patch is all.  We all do from time to time.  If every day in life was a cake walk, we’d all be billionaires.  It’s the rough times that make us stronger.  And it’s surviving those times that make us better.

What is on my playlist?: the new David Bowie and the new Alice in Chains.

What wine(s) is (are) impressing me right now at the store?: Pehu-Simonet Brut NV, K Vintners Viognier 2011, and Dunham Syrah 2009.

Recommended reads, blog or otherwise:  Autobiography of Mark Twain, Volume One.

What’s on tap for this week?:  Those damn Ramon Bilbao wines I keep forgetting about, a mélange of languishing sample bottles from the Studio, a bit of Australia perhaps, and reconnecting from old friends and colleagues.


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