Mediocrity, The New Gateway Drug

When life gives you lemons, don’t make lemonade, toss ‘em in the fridge and grab yourself some wine instead! In light of the recent fires (no pun intended) we all endured here in the Connayo last week, I think that’s sound advice!

Since my weekend hiking plans were pretty much ruined, and even though it was still a bit smoky outside, my friend and I decided to meet for a glass of wine at a place that had a nice patio overlooking the ash sprinkling down over Westlake Blvd. Well we sat down and waited, and waited, and no one came to our table, which was nestled in amongst the other mostly empty tables, so I could see how we could be overlooked. I did notice that the manager went to the table next to us though. There were four of them and they had purchased a whole bottle of wine, where as there were only two of us and we just wanted two glasses. Anyway, the manager was behaving in such an obsequious manner with the table, her head was practically jammed right up their… um, how shall I put this? Her head  was… uhh… well, I guess I just have to come out and say it: her head was practically jammed right up their ass… es!  Not only that, she didn’t even glance in our direction as she stepped away from the table! We had no water, no menus, no nothing, but she didn’t even notice. I guess if you purchase a whole bottle of wine, as opposed to just a glass of wine, you’re going to get the manager’s head up your ass. So maybe don’t go there.

We said screw this, we can go get our own bottle of wine for the price of two glasses and sit by the lake where it’s really pretty and we don’t have to worry about being ignored, (only arrested) so that’s what we did! My friend left the choosing of the wine to me, since I happen to know a lot about the stuff. I already had it in my mind that I was going to pick something mediocre, yet drinkable, since we didn’t want to spend a lot of money. Oh, and it had to have a screw top for convenience. I thought a nice, crisp Sauvignon Blanc would play well against the smokyness in the air, and I knew exactly which one to get: Oyster Bay Sauvignon Blanc, which comes from the Marlborough region of New Zealand. That region of NZ makes spectacular SBs! But they also make mediocre SBs and that brand is one of them. Don’t get me wrong, it’s very drinkable, but when you’ve had spectacular wine, and then you drink mediocre wine, well, it’s like driving a Maserati, the having to switch over to a Camry!

Personally, I like spectacular wines but my wallet doesn’t, and the wallet is gonna win out every time. I say stick to the mediocre stuff, and you know why? Because drinking good wine is just a gateway drug. You start with the crappy stuff like the shit they sell at Trader Joe’s, but then one day, you get a taste of some of the better stuff, and you say “Hey, that’s pretty good! It’s way better than the crap I’ve been drinking!” then you start to drink good wine on a regular basis. But one day your wine snob friend says “Try this!” and she (me) turns you on to the really good stuff and you come to realize just how much you’ve sold yourself out in the past. Before you know it, you’re spending $40, $50, even $100 a bottle! Pretty soon, people who never used to want to hang out with you before, start becoming your best friends! They lavish you with attention and compliments while holding out their wine glass for you to fill, and you’re all buzzed and laughing and having a great time! You feel good about yourself because you know “the really good shit” and everybody knows it and looks up to you. You’re a wine superstar! Until one day, you can’t buy the good stuff anymore because you’re spent, broken, and all your money is gone. Your “friends” no longer want to have anything to do with you and you’ve resorted to panhandling outside of Trader Joe’s for the cheap stuff! Believe me, I see it happen all the time, it ain’t worth it!

NY Style?

NY Style?

My advice: stick with the mediocre stuff.

But if you want my opinion on the good stuff…

By the way, we got it from Vons, and they have the most wonderful selection of mediocre wines, so I’m sure you’ll find something!

So after sitting on our little park bench drinking our mediocre wine, overlooking the lake and watching all the rich drunks cruising around on their shitty boats, we got hungry, so we decided to stick with the “cheap” theme of the evening and get a slice of pizza. We headed over to Mulberry Street Pizza on Thousand Oaks Blvd. They recently opened up this location after being in BH for many years and claim to have authentic NY style pizza. I have to say that the staff are really friendly and the place is buzzing with NYers. But you know what? I found their pizza to be just… mediocre. The good thing is that you can get a slice anytime, where as my favorite place doesn’t offer slices at all. I’ve had some of the best NY pizza, so for me, MS just doesn’t slice it (pun intended).

Hmm, you know maybe you should go to Mulberry St. Pizza after all and just stick with the mediocre stuff, since we all know what happens when you don’t.

Mulberry Street Pizza

1655 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd.

Thousand Oaks, CA

805.379.1121

Categories: Alcohol, Beverages, Food, Humor, Pizza, Wine | Tags: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

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4 thoughts on “Mediocrity, The New Gateway Drug

  1. Your crappy service experience reminds me that lately it seems I have about a 75% chance of getting crappy service. I think maybe I could just start my own blog talking about the crappy service.

    • That’s a good estimate, unfortunately. Hey, just go out with three other people and buy a bottle of wine and, well, you know what’ll happen!

  2. Being out in Cali there’s more than an abundance of wines and wineries to choose from. There are plenty of good wines in the $15-25 from my experiences ( as well as all the years of learning from my dad who now buys the grapes and concentrates from distributors and makes wine). One place if they do have liquor licenses there (some states they don’t) is Costco. Will have huge selection/variety as well as prices (everything from your $8 red table wine to the ones locked up in cases). I’ve also found just going to and trying out different wineries is a good route to go as well (though out this way in PA and Jersey there are the farmer’s “fruit” wines which I can’t stand). You do get some good varieties as well as a lot of interesting red “blends” that you typically would not see in the store. I agree on the pizza, I do like some fresh NY pizza (now im feeling hungry).

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