I like wine. I don’t know it very well, but I’m open to taking advice about it, what to pair it with and such. I listen to wine arguments and discussions with a bit of detachment because even if the people arguing are knowledgeable and passionate, they’re engaged with things that are outside the scope of my simple “I would like a good glass of wine” perspective.
It gets utterly surreal when they start arguing about corkscrews. There are, it turns out, lots of different ways to open a bottle of wine, all of which are potential subjects for argument. What throws me is that this is not even about the wine (at least not in any way that speaks to me) yet the arguments can get even more heated than those about wine. As someone who just wants to open the bottle to get to the deliciousness inside, it’s off-putting.
Gamers argue about corkscrews all the time.
Now, don’t get me wrong, it can be a lot of fun to argue about corkscrews with other people who also Care Deeply about them, but it’s easy for the corkscrew argument to overwhelm the discussion, especially as it gets heated. It becomes hard to see that for many people, the right corkscrew is the one they have, and they’re happy with that. And when you describe in no uncertain terms how their corkscrew is crap and how the only good corkscrew is this other kind, then the best case scenario is that they think you’re a jerk, and the worst is that they decide that maybe beer enthusiasts will be a trifle more welcoming.
Disagree about the corkscrews if you like, but don’t forget that people are really here for the wine.