Gunz & G-vertz

Come armed, with checkbooks

I guess I let myself feel complacent, thinking that after the last election, when Obama and the Dems turned back the wingnuts, and D’Faz thrashed Tea-Partier Art Robinson, I could maybe relax a little, stop lathering about politics and concentrate on the pleasures of life: I’d think and write about my beamish grandkids, our bursting garden and, of course, bounties in wine.

Then came the massacre at Sandy Hook, 20 lovely babies blown away, plus six caring adults (note: as a teacher for many years, I’ve always considered those colleagues who teach and work at the K-12 level to be genuine heroes, never more heroic than at Sandy Hook). Now, the gun-junkies are propagating the lie that the killings never happened, that the whole event was staged by the guv’ment conspiring to confiscate their beloved guns. Those sobbing parents were just actors. Those 20 tiny caskets were empty boxes, all part of an elaborate plot to subvert the Constitution, particularly the Second Amendment. Riiight.

I’m among the most tolerant and peaceful of people, and I really have nothing against guns as such, have owned many and can shoot fairly well. But hurt a baby — or justify their suffering and death — and I turn furious.

Last month’s march on Salem (and other towns) by armed mobsters (not even close to a well-regulated militia) was nothing less than an attempt to bully legislators and terrify a peace-loving public. I was particularly impressed by the photo of one yahoo who shouldered his rifle with a fixed bayonet. I thought, no wonder these mugs are so opposed to such minimal restrictions as background checks. And mental health? Did anyone think to ask Mr. Bayonet how often he fantasizes about stabbing someone in hand-to-hand combat? Does anybody wanna hang with this yobbo when he’s chugged a six-pack? Maybe he’s in the right company.

Most of us conceive our work as part of constructing a civilized society. But it’s clear that some of our fellow citizens are living in rather different — and very dangerous — dreams. They often describe themselves as “law-abiding,” and they probably are — until they’re not. I don’t know what to do about them. I don’t want their guns. I just don’t want them to threaten me, or our kids. And I don’t want to read or hear their bizarre denials.

For now, let’s talk about some good news — and wine.

The wine auction benefitting the SMART (Start Making A Reader Today) program is scheduled for 5 to 7:30 pm Tuesday, March 19, at Boulevard Grill, 2123 Franklin Blvd. in Eugene. Tickets run $30 and include food, drinks, speeches — and access to the auction of wines and wine-related events (tours, tastings, etc.) donated by some of our state’s best wineries and restaurants: local beauties from J. Scott, Opine, Territorial, Stanton and others.

Good times for a good cause, one that does more good for children — helping them learn to read — that a thousand guns ever could.

And if you can’t find enough good glug at the auction, rummage through your local wine stores. There’s a global glut of wine, prices are tumbling and bargains abound. Even Oregon is affected. F’rinstance, spring has sprung, and time’s right for a stir-fry of fresh veggies, accompanied by Foris 2010 Dry Gewurztraminer ($9.50) from the Rogue Valley. This beauty bursts with flavors of sweet grapefruit, melon, peaches and a whiff of spice. Don’t fret over pronunciation; just say g-VERTZ and get it.

See ya at the SMART auction. Let’s come armed — with our checkbooks.