Friday, January 29, 2016

Reflections on Tea

I having been reflecting on the significance of tea in my family. With a British mother, we grew up drinking tea. I did the above graphic and sent it as a card to Mum a few years ago. It was the first thing Mum said when I walked in the door; "Would you like a cuppa tea?"  It's the first thing we all say, no matter what the weather is. I have memories of greeting Mum at the airport after her long international trips with a thermos of tea.  Tea is delight and comfort and welcome and warmth and family.

It was the last thing Mum said, when Hospice got her all settled into her bed. "I would like a cup of tea now." And we gave her tea, from a little sponge, on the end of a stick. It looked like a sponge lolly pop. And she was so happy. 

At her funeral, we gave out little bags with P.G. Tips in her memory:

Now, weeks after her death, a cup of tea is my connection to Mum. Especially in these cold, wintery days, tea brings me such comfort and warmth. 

These memories of tea have been sparked by a comment I received on one of my Magnolia May videos. I was watching a journaling video with MissVickyBee on YouTube. Now,  I have to say I don't personally know Vicky, but I feel like I do. She is very chatty and when I watch her videos, it's like having tea with a friend. She's introduced me to planners, pens, Traveler's Notebooks, journals and a lot of things that contribute to my planner addiction. [Insert eye roll from John Morgan]

In this video, she says, "If you are thinking this is going to be a quick video, it's not. Grab yourself a cup of coffee, tea, water, whatever you want, sit back and relax and we're going to go through it all."

So I wrote:

I really did stop the video and go get a cuppa tea! Thanks for the inspiration! :-)
And THEN! This comment shows up from Cindy Bin on Magnolia's Walk in The Woods video:

Hi, I saw a comment you made on another video where you said you drink tea. I have ranted against tea for years online, trying to help people understand why we shouldn't drink this stuff. It isn't good for you. I'm a convert to the Mormon church and we have The Word of Wisdom which is direct revelation from God saying that alcohol, tea, coffee, cigarettes and mind-altering drugs like marijuana are not for the body. We are taught the moral and physical reasons to avoid using these things. This HELPS us. It is good to understand why we shouldn't use these things. But I never drank tea (or coffee) even BEFORE I had religious beliefs. BLECH! I always felt that "tea and coffee is for grownups" and I never felt or wanted to be "old enough" to consume these strong, hot drinks. How do people even get started drinking this stuff? You didn't drink it when you were a sweet, innocent little girl, did you? Of course not. So what happened to you to go from a sweet, innocent little girl who wouldn't think of consuming this strong, hot drink, to suddenly drinking it? So many people think they have to drink things like tea and coffee to fit in and be an adult and be social. It shouldn't be that way! There is a better way to live.

Wow. Where to start? If I'm taking this seriously, first of all, it was the afternoon, so I wasn't actually drinking black tea. I was drinking my favourite Rooibus which has no caffeine. Secondly, there are many health benefits of black tea, here's 23. Thirdly, some of my dearest friends are Mormons. I am here today because of Dr's John & Brett Brimhall who are Mormon. When I travel and the dogs go to their "other" mommy Rita, they are going into a Mormon household. Rita is one of my dearest friends, and I am so blessed that she is my neighbor. I have attended services with her at her church, I've gone to Relief Society, I've talked to scads of missionaries. I'm familiar with the Word of Wisdom. I joke about it when Rita's husband is nursing a giant bottle of Pepsi. Lastly, I find it curious that Cindy didn't write the reply to me on Vicky's page or even comment to Vicky about tea or coffee, since Vicky mentions it in her video.

So I did some research on Cindy. I went and checked out her channel. She's a doll collector, the kind that look real, called "Reborn dolls," and she has all these doll videos. I had no idea this world existed! Here's a Reborn baby articleI watched her Christmas video. I also noticed that she gets into a lot of arguments with people in her comment feed. ("You people are HORRIBLE HORRIBLE HORRIBLE!") Because, come on. So many dolls, so many jokes. But it's more than that, she really does, as she says, "rant" especially against marijuana. So just like her anti-tea comment on my video, she has done the same thing on pro-pot people's videos.

I had a better picture of who this woman was. I sent her comment to my friend, Radio Guy, & told him I would post his response. I tweaked it and then posted:

Thanks for stopping by and shaming me for my evil tea drinking ways. Not only did you bring in your own personal bias of " BLECH!" to make me wrong, but you backed it up with God and made it a sin. Well done.  You're right, I began drinking tea at an early age to "fit in and be an adult and be social." How did you know? I went from being a "sweet, innocent little girl" to wanting to be one of the cool kids when I got to Middle School. They were known as the "Tetley Teasers," a group of jittery, caffeine-fueled, stained teeth, mean girls who sat together at lunch, drank tea and got all the attention of the boys-mostly a gang of ruffian coffee drinking teenagers called the "Folgerms." I desperately wanted their approval like a man wants a wife and then soon after, another wife.   I see now, thanks to your unnecessary kindness, that my addiction to tea has led to a series of unfortunate life choices, from overdue library books to the collecting of tea pots, strainers, and other paraphernalia to support my horrible tea habit. Thanks for setting me straight and giving me my life back. Now I can devote the hours I spent drinking tea, to other hobbies such as collecting planners, fountain pens, and brainy-type books on Time Management and Quantum Physics.

"Tetley Teasers" and "Folgerms." Genius! That was Radio Guy. I didn't want to be unkind, but I also felt like I needed to respond. You can read the rest of it on the video page, because she did respond again; this time louder with more assertions. And then I read this Grasshopper Note : 

It may be hard to believe but our beliefs strengthen our resolve and weaken our ability to learn.

So true. Whenever you know something, there's no room for anything else. You stop being curious about other ideas or possibilities. 

I ended the back 'n' forth with "Sorry, what you're saying isn't my cup of tea."  

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