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||When I was an engineering student in the early nineties, I lived on the twelfth floor of a block of flats. Often, after lectures, my friend Neal would often drop by to discuss studies..... or, perhaps more honestly, to partake of a nice cup of tea and whatever I had in the cupboard (biscuits were too expensive in those days). Following the brewing stage, we got into the habit of dropping our teabags out of the window for entertainment, preferably when other students were coming out of the rear entrance. However, I was most disappointed with the impact of standard square teabags|
and, with my aerodynamic knowledge to hand, decided to try out round teabags - a relatively new design concept at the time.
My hypothesis was correct; the round teabags made for a much more satisfactory splatter on both glass and concrete! Although I never conducted proper experiments, my theory was that the higher mass to surface area ratio, and more streamlined shape, made for an improved drag
coefficient, resulting in better acceleration and a higher terminal velocity (although an improvement in directional stability could also have been a factor).
My question therefore is: What importance do teabag manufacturers place on the flying characteristics of their designs - indeed was this the reason for patenting the round teabag in the first place? Since I now live in a conventional house, my post-brew bombing opportunities are limited, nevertheless I would be very interested if anyone has any official data on the subject, or perhaps has even conducted their own tests. If not, this area has much research potential as there is evidently a market niche worth exploiting.
I'm writing in response to your mail from emily cole about bubbles in tea ('spooky welsh tea money'). i am a brit living in tajikistan and even here in central asia, there are a number of similar traditions about tea. for example, if there are bubbles in the middle of your tea, it means that you will get money, but you have to pinch the bubbles out with your fingers and throw them over your shoulder. however, if the bubbles are around the edge of your tea cup, it means debt, which is obviously not a good thing.
other than black tea - which is drunk without milk and in a small handle-less cup called a 'pial', green tea is also popular here, and if there are sticks from the tea (i don't think that's the technical term for them, but do you know what i mean?) floating in the cup, it means you'll have guests.
tea drinking is a big thing in central asia and there's a ritual that when you have a guest round, you should pour the tea into the guest's pial three times before serving it. there are various reasons for this, none of which make a huge amount of sense to me. and in tajikistan, the amount of tea you pour into the pial is an indicator of how much respect you have for the other person.
I hope this is interesting! Emma.
|Nicey replies: Emma,
That is wonderful stuff indeed, and shows that these superstitions are much more wide spread than we first thought, probably an indicator of their antiquity. Hoorah for you and Central Asia. Big Woos on being our first correspondent from Tajikistan.
||I got very bored last week and made henges out of biscuits to find out which was the hengiest. Googling indicates that this isn't already a world record, so I think I've set it! yay!|
|Nicey replies: They are of course lovely. Mind you its a bit of a blow to see the Pink Wafer winning but then again its probably better to use them as a construction toy rather than eating them. I thought the Bourbon one looked good but of course its been done before.
||Hi I read a brief article on your site in the Times and thought I'd send my|
praise for a fellow man dedicating a small part of his free time to the
important part of life that we all know as 'the tea-break'...
I to, like many, share the enjoyment of a nice cuppa, although at my
previous place of employment, due to an above normal enjoyment of this hot
liquid was punished by making far too many cups a day, this inspired me to
make my little site that you might appreciate: www.theteamaker.com - for
when everyone wants a cup but none one will admit it's their turn to make
It is totally random - here's hoping your lucky...
|Nicey replies: Yes a friend told me about your tea maker the other day. I imagine it could also be easily extended to choose people to make coffee as well, if that's your bag.|
What a comforting web page for an expat. brit! Heard about it on Norwegian radio yesterday and thought I'd take a look.
Norway's a great country, but you can't get a decent cup of tea unless you make it yourself. Norwegians think that an Earl Grey teabag dipped into a cup of hottish water is tea! Biscuits aren't up to British standards either.
Keep up the good work!
|Nicey replies: I just heard from Britt who did the interview that we were on Norwegian radio yesterday, Woo.
I told her that I like A-Ha, especially 'The sun always shines on TV' but she seemed unimpressed, but she has promised to send me some Norwegian biscuits, Yay.