Commandaria is the world’s most enduring brand of wine, but nothing is done about it. Its potential is wasted by oafs and fools who sit on a goldmine, twiddling their thumbs. The brand is under-utilized, untapped, its global reach unattained.
Call it a wasted opportunity.
Speaking of sin, I just remembered something to do with Christianity. Wasn’t Cyprus the place Paul the Apostle visited during his first missionary journey?
Wasn’t it also where, according to legend, Paul struck the magician Elymas blind, thereby successfully proselytizing the Roman Proconsul Sergius Paulus?
It’s a great story. Saul of Tarsus, a once-upon-a-time irreverent figure — and temporarily blinded by God on the road to Damascus some years earlier — had converted to Christianity, changing his name to Paul. Soon after, Paul embarked on a missionary journey that took him through Cyprus, where he struck blind Elymas, the magician who was doubting his teachings. Then he converted Proconsul Paulus to the teachings of Jesus Christ. Then he established the island’s first churches, all within a few years of the crucifixion.
Paul the Apostle, one of early Christianity’s most zealous and controversial missionaries.
A couple of words about St. Paul. He was an oafish brute in his earlier years, and hardly a man of God. But his vision of Christ on the road to Damascus made him embrace Jesus, change character, and embark on a mission to spread the word of God. En route to Corinth he passed through Cyprus, and the rest is legend.
Could one run fathoms and leagues with this extraordinary story, creating a marketing and advertising campaign in which the theme is ‘Sweet Salvation?’ Could one depict the first Christians — Paul, Barnabas, Mark — taking Holy Communion using, say, Commandaria, the world’s oldest, sweetest brand of wine?
Could one expand the campaign to cover less pious figures, people associated with power, pleasure and merrymaking, like the Ancient Greeks and Romans, who enjoyed feasting on wine during their orgiastic festivals?
How about Richard the Lionheart, who, according to records, served the sweet libation in his wedding to Berengaria, his wife and queen?
How about the Lusignans, who acquired the island after the crusades, or the Venetians, who purchased it from Catherine Cornaro, Queen of Cyprus? How about Selim II (Suleiman the Drunkard), Ottoman emperor, who invaded Cyprus in 1571 to secure a ceaseless supply of wine, his favorite beverage (or so the story goes)?
Could all these concepts and stories be part of an advertising campaign for the world’s most historically interesting wine?
If only the circle jerks and other meatheads in charge were made to disappear. If only they were replaced with individuals of vision and ability.
It would happen then.
I’ll drink to that. I’ll toast to it. I may even pray for it.
But most of all, I’ll cheer it when it happens.
In the meantime, I’m content knowing that I, along with very few people in the world, have abundant and cheap access to one of the world’s most unique beverages.
From your historically minded and forever spinning Spin Doctor,
Eyes open, mind sharp.