There’s no such thing as bad publicity, right? It’s better to be talked about than not talked about, right?
So they say.
Anyway, imagine my surprise to find that I was singled out for ridicule in The Washington Post’s “Magazine Reader” column on Tuesday, September 27. The column was a hilarious send-up of the three new magazines that have suddenly debuted here in the Nation’s Capital to convince us that we are indeed a fashionable, luxurious city, rather than the “sleepy Southern backwater” that New York and The Washington Post want us to remain.
The three magazines bear distinct similarities in format and style, which were skewered mercilessly by Peter Carlson, the Post’s magazine reviewer. Personally, I will vouch for the writing and editing of DC, the entrant from Modern Luxury Publications. It is edited by Ann McCarthy, formerly of Saveur, the best food magazine in the country, and features wine and food writing by … well … yours truly.
The premiere issue of DC featured my column on corkage policies of DC restaurants. Not Pulitzer material, by any means. But here’s what Carlson singled out for ridicule:
“DC's prose is equally memorable. Here, for instance, is a brief excerpt from Dave McIntyre's wine column: ‘You buy those exclusive and expensive wines for a reason, after all -- several reasons, really, including prestige, investment and tax write-offs for charity donations. And because you can. But be honest, you also buy them to drink.’
“Good point, Dave.”
Now, that sounds pretty good. After all, I’ve taken his quote out of context, and he took mine out of context. So you don’t get the sense that “Good point, Dave,” really means, “Well, DUH!”
Carlson obviously missed the point, which is pretty typical for the Post. Some people do buy expensive wines for reasons other than drinking. That may be hard to grasp for journos, a class (of which I consider myself one) for whom drinking is a raison d'etre.
I can take this. After all, I've poked fun at other wine writers, even if I didn't spread their names over a major metropolitan daily. And as my wife said, there are two ways to get mentioned in the Style section: die and have an appreciation written about you, or live and be ridiculed. I can wait for appreciation.
I’ll let you readers make up your own minds, if you care. Here’s my corkage piece the quote came from. And here’s the Post piece. I’ll just say that I’m proud to be writing for the magazine that is “100-percent Blitzer-free!”