Good Counsel

Ben Franklin once said, “Take counsel in wine but resolve afterwards in water.” I thought about this quote over the weekend. Carmen and I made some spaghetti with meat sauce and indulged in some salami, cheese, and wine. At the same time there is an expression, the origin of which I’m not sure, that says, “Where two take counsel, there is no lack of plans.” These two quotes combined are a perfect example that wine is best shared with someone.



I don’t necessarily take the wisdom of Ben Franklin to be the gospel; as a matter of fact, since Ben Franklin had a history of law, I don’t doubt that had something of a drinking problem. He also once said that, “Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.” If he ever said anything about scotch or White-Russians, I’m sure he was a lush or a successful lawyer. The bit about water throws me, though. I don’t know if the “take counsel in wine” quote is finished; knowing Franklin’s propensity for the sauce the quote could be as follows, “take counsel in wine but resolve afterwards in water and scotch.” This could have been the first example of a “beer before liquor” mindset. People say that my generation is falling behindā€¦ it may be because we drink beef before doing hard liquor, we’re eliminating our brain cells. Perhaps Franklin was telling us to drink wine and then move to hard liquor. Pretty gross to think about, isn’t it?

I guess another way to look at it is this. Share a bottle of wine with someone, talk about your problems, don’t overindulge yourself and life will be okay. I know that a little bit of red wine in your system has been shown to be good for your heart and increase antioxidants. These health benefits may be what clears your mind and allows you to seek better counsel from within. Why not also allow a friend join in on the conversation.


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