Sunday, January 24, 2016

Wine and models

In my 2015 year-end review, I briefly mentioned my interest in wine. I started teaching myself about it about 20 years ago when I was on a date and mistakenly ordered a glass of white wine that I thought was red. I’ve entertained that interest off and on over the years and got back into it when my fiancĂ©e and I realized we shared the same interest in all things grapes. A vacation to Napa in November kicked it off in earnest.

As you might imagine there are a huge number of blogs and discussion groups related to wine, and I’ve been reading them in between my daily checks of Hyperscale, ARC, and Missing Links. I was pleasantly surprised to find at least one similarity between wine and scale modeling, that oenophiles collect more wine than they can drink just as we buy more models than we can build!

This thread on the Wine Berserkers forum highlighted other, similar problems that we face as scale modelers. Here are a few lessons these wine enthusiasts learned last year that we might scale modelers should consider as well. Replace wine with model and drink with build, and you'll see that they might as well be talking about us.

  • I still allow others' opinions to influence too much of my purchases.

  • If you order a bunch of wine, you are going to outgrow your storage.

  • If you order a bunch of wine, you need to start drinking more.

  • I get more enjoyment from sharing wine with curious and grateful friends with limited wine knowledge than with fellow cognoscenti who fuss over and dissect every nuance of the wine.

  • Drink your good wine. You may go to the doctor and find out you have a problem you never knew you had. The wine in your collection won't matter if you're dead.

  • It's okay to pass on wine sales, even if they are great sales. There will be more.

And my favorite….

  • Wine seems to attract people with very strongly held opinions. When some dip starts talking about wine and doesn't have a sense of humor about it, he's someone to avoid.

It’s a small world. Drink wine and build models!


  1. In vino veritas! Well sad, nice comparison of your passions.

  2. Being a fan of both, one area where wine is a little better is in the guilt department. Some wine I buy to drink in the short term but some wine I buy to drink years from now. Even though it isn't true, and we know that to be the case, when we buy models we often think we will build them in the short term. Then, when we don't, we end up feeling guilty about it. (At least I do.)

    1. You're exactly right. I've bought every model in my stash with every intention of building it, and I do feel some guilt for having so many that I will probably never actually build. And there's a difference here, too: While some wines will improve with age, model will not; it's likely that a new, better one will be released.

  3. Steve, I just found your blog, and as you pointed out in an earlier article about wanting to comment on something, then deciding to just move on. I'm with you 100%! This particular post; however, was not one.
    Now dont get me wrong, please, this one actually made me smile. See, I am a huge fan of modeling...and, thanks to my wife, beginning to become just as big of a fan of wine.
    When I got back into this damn, wallet slimming hobby about 3 years ago, my wife didnt understand why I wanted to sit at a table "playing" with a box of plastic parts and a bottle of terrible smelling glue. She went along with it and never really said much. Then as I began to build more and buy more, she made a comment one night about how much I was spending on models. I replied with, hmm, I dont seem to recall me saying anything about all the wine we have accumulating under the stairs. Of course, this was probably not the best comeback that should have came out of my mouth, but sometimes, my mouth kicks in waaaayy before my brain does.
    Recently my wife came to me and said that she was considering purchasing a wine storage which I said was probably a good idea to protect our much is it? When she told me, I smiled, gave a quick nod and the conversation ended. We bought it, and now, 6 months later, I have never heard any comment regarding how much I'm spending on paint or kits.
    And just to point out, I do enjoy a nice Carmenere while buildng occasionally!

    1. Thanks for sharing that, Jeremy. I think the costs of our hobby pale in comparison to other hobbies that we could pursue. I'm glad your wife has a hobby of her own (especially one that you can enjoy!) as it puts modeling in perspective. The downside to enjoying both modeling and wine? After a glass or two of wine I'm too buzzed to be productive at the workbench.