Friday, March 22, 2013

Friday Find, March 22nd

Each Friday we highlight a wine from the Northwest that we think is a real "find". By find we might mean that it's a steal, as all of these wines we'll feature weekly are at or under $20. We might also mean, "Hey, you really need to go find this", and it might be a wine that we feel not enough people know about. In any case, with the weekend pending, we're hoping to help you "find" a wine to kickoff the weekend right. We'll tell you a little bit about the wine and try to help you track it down here in the Northwest.

I have had the terrible misfortune this last couple of weeks of watching two of my friends deal with some very difficult situations. In one particular instance, their life changed completely. I'm not a religious person and so for me, finding something positive in these situations can often prove very difficult.  

Where I am perhaps able to take something positive away from both is that when those close to us experience tragedies that experience can have a violently jarring impact on us, at once very emotional and often, simultaneously a feeling of helplessness or a "it could have just as easily been me."  What it should do however is provide us with tremendous perspective on our own lives and circumstances. Most of us, myself included are supremely lucky, some would say blessed. Yet, we find in many of the moments an opportunity to complain. It might be about the weather, the traffic, a co-worker or something as childish as the way someone else chews their food.

On March 7th my friend and cycling teammate Mark Bender was injured in Hawaii. He was there with his wife Sarah celebrating their 15th anniversary. While bodysurfing Mark suffered a serious spinal injury, he has gone through surgery and at the moment, has very limited feeling and movement in his body. Mark and I raced together in the Master's Cat 3s in cyclocross and we spent a fair bit of time together this last season warming up and watching his boys and his wife race before our races would begin. (Mark and Sarah have four boys.)  I'm not sure what's next for Mark and his family, there is a long road ahead for them. They are people of tremendous faith and so I think that, coupled with the toughness that they all exude will hold them in good stead as Mark goes through rehabilitation and recovery. I hope that one day we'll race together again. 

For me, seeing Mark's attitude and approach, has been in some ways embarrassing (I have a reputation for whining about things among my teammates; the weather foremost among them), he's not complaining, he's putting his head down and doing what he needs to do. Grateful that he's still alive and has a wonderful family and community there to support him. If Mark can do that, than the least I can do is look for the positive, brush off the small things, and keep everything in perspective. I'm very lucky, and so, I should be happy for that.

                                                        photo from Tiffany Stevens

Today's Friday Find is not a wine, but rather a coffee. Yes, I know this is a wine blog, but it's also my blog, and so I can do whatever I want, and in this case, I'm calling attention to a  very special coffee. The good people at Doma Coffee outside of Couer d'Alene, Idaho have partnered with another teammate Jenni Gaertner to sell a particular coffee with all the proceeds going to Mark and his family through the end of April. The La Biccicleta is a floral and nutty roast with mocha and spice flavors. More than anything it tastes like doing the right thing. So buy a bag, for $12.50 plus shipping you'll be helping one of the nicest families you could ever have the pleasure to know. Thanks, and enjoy today. (You can buy a bag for Mark by clicking here.)


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