‘Tis the season for re-gifting

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My wife and I are going to try an experiment this holiday season. We’re initiating a multi-year project to track the travels of a single bottle of party favor wine as it hops from party to party, host to host, forgotten cabinet to forgotten cabinet. How will we do this? GPS? RFID? Nah. Just gonna re-gift a bottle to a recipient who we know will play along and re-gift it to someone else, and on and on. A viticultural chain letter.

Since gift wine is almost universally crappy* it doesn’t get better with age and so, after a while, what gets shuffled in social circles is actually a container of steadily more noxious (and possibly dangerous, if consumed) liquid. A gift that depreciates in the giving.

What’s really interesting to ponder is the origin of a re-gifted bottle. Who actually starts the process? The quest to know is the equivalent of an epidemiologist searching for the origin of a mutant virus.

Also, can the re-gifted bottle jump the “holiday barrier” and enter the mainstream gifting community or — gasp — will it actually be consumed?

[*] An exception to this is the tier of really good wines that get shunted around. These bottles are re-gifted precisely because they are so good. Too good to drink yourself when they’d make a perfect re-gift. And thus the fine wines get finer in the same way that the re-gifted hooch gets hoochier.