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Discussion in 'Beer Trading Talk' started by RWNewhouse, Jan 30, 2013.
No, I don't think I miss it. I'm just reading what he wrote. He wasn't chasing a particular whale; he was chasing any whale -- one he "never tried before" and that "was at least $500." To me, that's not the same as someone offering up more than $$-value for a DQ because that's the one bottle they really want to try (and I bet whoever did land a DQ this way would share it with at least one other person!). This guy's target was based primarily on a dollar figure. From the start, he treated this like a game he wanted to win. And by win I mean hit is target value (over $500) with a wine he never tried before, and it didn't matter which wine.
If you read the details he presents with each trade, you see that no one ever solicited him for a trade. He basically hunted people down he thought would "trade down," money-wise, to help him achieve his goal. I'm not necessarily saying he duped all of them, but he was treating them, and their wines, as a means to an end. He wasn't trying to be a nice guy and offer them wines they were actively seeking. He had to convince some of them they wanted it, and he says as much in the article.
One question that is not answered is whether he has already tried any of the wines he traded for in trades 1-5. If not, why not stop there? Because he wanted something based on its dollar value. That is his driving force.
It's all pretty well summed up in his last paragraph, especially with these quotes:
"the Chevalier-Montrachet was everything you would expect from such a rare and expensive bottle." - Here his descriptors of the wine he finally opened were "rare" and "expensive"; by saying that, he's basically implying that's what made it taste better. On one hand, he's throwing $-value out the window when he's trading away his wine, playing to his friends' "sensibilities" and preferences, but in the end it's precisely the $-value that contributes to his wine being "everything you would expect from such a rare and expensive bottle." That's what doesn't jive for me.
"I started to feel a bit guilty about the wines I had pawned off on my friends and colleagues...I reminded myself that everyone was happy with the trades they had made. But, really, how could they be this happy?" - again, it wasn't like he was out to trade great wines to his friends to get great wines in return that he would open and/or share with people. It was a math equation, pure and simple. And he "won" by feeling he was more happy than his friends.
In the end, and bringing it back to beer, I just don't think someone in the beer trading world would last very long if they did the same thing and wrote (i.e. bragged) about it. At least I don't think they could get away with it more than a handful of times. But I could be wrong.
I agree for now, but things are changing, make no mistake.
My only purpose in always responding negatively to those who bring this Barter Kings mentality into the beer trading realm is to keep this asshole's idea from becoming an accepted part of the trading community group mindset. People can do whatever they want with their beer, I just hope a sense of community and sharing is kept in our little neck of the woods as long as possible. I realize that, in a way, this is as selfish a thing as any of the desires of this rare wine sycophant, but there it is. I don't think he is an asshole because I think what he did was "wrong", I think he's an asshole because I see his raison de etre similarly infecting the beer trading community to my personal detriment.
You dont cheat and rip your friends off. Even if your friend is a gullible / ignorant son of a bitch! That kind of behavior will get you treated like the dickbag you are.
I certainly don't feel like there's any expectation in my tasting group that you have to share every interesting beer you get with the group. We all buy and trade more beer than we can get through at once-every-two-week sessions, so of course people drink some beers at home, maybe alone, maybe with a SO, maybe with a buddy. When I know that someone in the group hasn't had and is particularly interested in a specific beer, I'll make a point to bring it to a tasting to share with them.
ahhhhhh...another passionate BA debate, gotta love 'em!
No expectation in my group either, we do it because we enjoy sharing. And it doesn't have to be at a group tasting, we share on brew days, and at home brew club meetings, and just when we want to share with others and there are only one or two around.
I cannot think of a fine beer I have had that would have been enjoyed more if I hadn't shared it, sorry if this, the point I am trying to make, wasn't adequately expressed.