01 November 2012

Not TOO Shabby

After coming out on the unscathed side of 'Hurricane Sandy', I almost feel bad about having a First World Problems whine-fest. With all the time I had off this week, I should be writing about all the books I was able to finish recently, but that's not quite ready yet.  I've had this post on the back burner since last week, however, so here it is:

As you all know, one of my favorite activities is drinking tea.  I find the taste is enhanced when it's served in a pretty teacup.  Is the taste actually better?  I mean, does the shape affect the heat distribution or the pathway to the taste buds, making it a better experience, or it is just aesthetically pleasing? I'm inclined to believe the former, since there's a specific design of glass for nearly every type of wine and liquor.  The principal must apply to tea. 

I'm generally satisfied having my tea at home, but it's always a treat when I get to go out to a tea shop, especially when it's specifically tea-related and not an oh-by-the-way-here's-some-tea-if-you-don't-want-coffee joint.  One of the reasons I love this is the chance to try, not just different kinds of tea and cakes, but different teacups as well.  To me, it's one of those non-necessities of life that just make life a tiny bit more tolerable.  And, if you're paying royally, you might as well feel like a princess. 

A non-tea comparison would be going for a manicure.  If you have two decent-working hands, you can easily give yourself a mani/pedi.  You go out to a salon so that you can sit back and get the full treatment.  In my case the little massage makes it worth forking over those hard-earned dollars from time to time. 

Generally, when I go out to tea, I do feel like I'm treated well.  When there's an exception, I'll rant about it here.  If it's really excellent service, I will try to be effusive in my praise - I want to be a positive person.  So what terrible experience have I had recently?  None, thankfully.  I've just noticed something in my more frequented places that's slowly been getting on my nerves, and that's The Inferiority of the Teacups.  Why am I given cups that are chipped if I didn't order the Disney's Beauty and the Beast special?  Then there's the fadey cups - one too many lips have sipped from these guys.  And, probably the worst, are the Just Plain Boring cups that I could find in any diner. 

What gives?  I don't mind the cups not matching the saucer, as long as it's done in a mildly charming way, and I don't need pristine Royal Doulton for heaven's sake, but a little effort would go miles toward improvement. 

I like shabby chic.  I do.  I have to: my apartment is the poster child for shabby, with the occasional chic thrown in.  Zenobia makes sure no furniture is fresh and scratch-free.  My teacups, though, tend to be in lovely shape.  This is despite the fact that I use them often.  The ones that fade to blahness either get replaced, reused, or kept out of the way when I have company.  Why?  Because hospitality calls for this.  You give whatever your best is - unless said company is too clumsy for comfort, or a child who can't help himself.   Either way, my apartment is not a business - nobody receives a bill at the end of a visit to my home.  When I go out to tea, though, I tend to have to shell out a lot.  The least that can be done is a pretty teacup!


Anonymous said...

Pretty nice post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wished to say that I have really enjoyed browsing26 your blog posts. In any case I'll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you write again soon!…

Donna Heber said...

Adorable photo and caption!