February 12, 2007


I am fighting a cold and brought a thermos to work to be close to a good supply of hot tea. I learned the importance of good tea one summer working at a boy scout camp in northern England. With a good cup of tea you can face anything-- driving mist; camping in ankle deep mud; a breakfast of white beans, french fries and toast; west Lancashire accents: anything. And good tea is foolishly simple to make: the only requirement is boiling hot water. It's amazing that tea gets screwed up so often, like by restaurants that give you a bag and a cup of lukewarm tapwater. As Paul Westerberg sang, 'I bought a headache!'

There is a 'Lipton's Assortment' box of tea bags in the lunch room and I am vexed that you can have 20 different kinds of tea but no 'tea'. There's Strawberry Delight and Citrus Heaven and Tropical Punch, but where have the good honorable load-bearing teas gone, like Earl Grey, dammit, or even English Breakfast? The closest thing I could find to something drinkable was 'Persian Earl Grey', which is the usual Earl Grey plus Jasmine, which is now skirmishing with Bergamot in my frontal lobe.

I hate this spineless idea that more is more. Less is more, get it? We are awash in pointless choices instead of mastering the fundamentals and appreciating the virtues of simplicity.


At February 12, 2007 6:03 PM , Anonymous Tim said...

my cold earlier this season was made bearable by the ginormous mug you gave me, filled repeatedly with tea. It was camomille (sorry!)

Lately, though, I've been surviving sub-zero (F) temps here with REAL tea. Red Rose is the brand. day and night. almost as satisfying as coffee. almost, that is.


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