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||Tea-related jewellery. What next?|
|Nicey replies: I'm guessing tea-related hair styles.|
Being an avid tea drinker and biscuit eater (some may call me a connoisseur), I was most interested to find your web site whilst searching the web for a top 10 biscuits review following a poll in the office on this exact matter.
I was particularly interested in your tea policy. You state quite clearly your policy on milk or water first, to which I agree, but clearly show a cup of tea with milk and teabag in contact. I cannot understand this and wonder if this was merely an oversight or a deliberate statement in your policy. I was brought up to appreciate the benefits of removing the bag prior to addition of milk, resulting in a cup of tea with maximum integrity.
Your thoughts would be very much appreciated.
|Nicey replies: Sam,
As you can see the illustration in our tea policy is of some train tea, where you get what you are given, and that's what I was given. Whilst its not ideal it still performs a vital role in the pantheon of tea drinking, which is to provide the possibility of tea drinking on a train. Since the photo was taken the train operator has changed maybe one or more times with the result that a refreshment trolly is no longer provided. No prizes for guessing what I would prefer on the hour long journey, a slightly incorrect cup of tea with a three pack of Jaffa Cakes or no tea at all.
This is also one of the reasons I picked that particular image as it is iconoclastic and shows that here at NCOTAASD we see tea as part of our everyday world and not just through the misty lens of nostaglia.
||While I anticipate you poking your mate in the ribs and saying, ďListen to the note I got from some dumb AmericanÖĒ I will go ahead with my postÖ|
Iím sitting here enjoying a lovely cuppa PGTips and examining my favorite cup, the interior of which has long since ceased being white, but is now a deep brown. Before I have to explain to my wife whatís happening to our cups (now that Iím well addicted to my breakfast, morning, noontime, afternoon and evening tea), is there anything I can do to prevent the discoloration of our vessels from occurring.
I thought I would turn directly to the experts.
Your poor American cousin,
|Nicey replies: Hello Mark,
Firstly well done on the proper tea drinking.
The build up of tea stains in your cup is usually related to the hardness of the water in your area. Hard water which has calcium and magnesium salts in reacts with the acidic compounds in tea to create salts of tannic acid (we think) and that is what builds up on your cup. Given all the chemistry I've just mentioned you would think that some of reverse chemistry would do the trick. Some people even turn to such things as bleach, but all that does is whiten the stain and leaves it otherwise intact ready to give a foothold for even more staining.
We find the best thing is simply to use a nylon pan scrubber and a bit of hot soapy water, to remove the stain completely. For tricky recesses fold the scrubber over the end of a teaspoon and rub away the staining with that. Once it's all off a quick scrub once or twice a week with the scourer should keep things nice and shinny.
||Dear Nicey, Wifey and The Crumbs,|
It was whilst savouring the morningís first freshly made pot of leaf tea in the office that I began to sing to spontaneously sing ďI like a nice cup of tea in the morningĒ before coming to a premature halt at the end of the line. Much conversation followed with colleagues as to the rest of the song.
It was easy enough to obtain thus:
I like a nice cup of tea in the morning
For to start the day you see
And at half-past eleven
Well my idea of Heaven
Is a nice cup of tea
I like a nice cup of tea with my dinner
And a nice cup of tea with my tea
And when it's time for bed
There's a lot to be said
For a nice cup of tea
Most gratifying. However my colleagues remain unsatisfied as to the lack of information about where this ditty was used in terms of advertising or at least want to know how this came to be ingrained in the British consciousness. Is it hard coded in our DNA or have we long forgotten where this song emerged? Can you or your diligent tannin-stained audience assist us on its origins over here in our government bunker? This message was produced in flexi-time at no cost to the taxpayer (and we pay for the tea ourselves).
The Campaign for Real Tea office splinter group.
|Nicey replies: Yes I'm pretty clueless on this, although I think its does mention 'a quarter past three' at some point.|
||Dear Nicey and the Wife,|
I was watching breakfast telly this morning and was surprised to see the presenters discussing a new nylon tea bag that is supposed to make the tea taste better.
I didnít get too many details as my concentration isnít the best first thing in the morning, but the tea bag was pyramid shaped, giving a strong indication of the manufacturer.
In a blind test (not carried out under scientific conditions) John Stapleton claimed to have preferred the tea from the nylon bag, although a much more in-depth study would be required in order to convince me of the merits of this new technology.
Iím all in favour of anything that makes my tea taste better, but Iím less keen on throwing lots of those little nylon bags on my compost heap.
|Nicey replies: Morning Keith,
That sounds like a giant leap backwards. Monkey in America sent us over some very dubiuos nylon teabags last year that were like tall four sided pyramids. The came in individually parcelled up adorned with gold coloured wire and ornamental leaves. I couldn't tell if the tea was any good or not as I was too annoyed. Much the same effect as wanting a cosy informal fireside pub lunch, and being forced to sit bolt upright in a draughty conservatory whilst some waitress chastises you for not booking and not fancying any of their ridiculously overpriced out of place and pompous menu.
John Stapleton should have known better than to endorse such nonsense, mind you I always thought that it was Lynn Faulds-Wood who wore the trousers. So maybe he is just making petulant statements whilst off the leash.
What am I going on about?