Under Pressure

It is only a couple of weeks until that well-known event, International Devotea Day. And this is my 148th blog post since switching to Tea Trade and abandoning my previous blog.

Not counting Beasts of Brewdom and another few sites I blog on, but the 148th Tea Spout.

So, if I time it right, the highly anticipated 150th can occur on April 8th.

If I have something intelligent to say now, and precisely once more before then it will all work out.

And there’s the rub. Precisely two intelligent and well-reasoned blogs in that time frame.

Lately, though, blogs have been harder to come by. It’s not just time pressure, it’s getting my head right.

I’ve recently had the experience of having to mine through the blogs, to select just a few to go into the upcoming book. So I basically read, or started to read, all of them.

Needing seven for the book, I pulled out about eighteen. Yes, just eighteen.

And after the read-throughs with the editor, I may not have seven.

Why, you ask?

Mainly because most of them are exactly like this one has been so far, just me sharing dull facts about what I am up to.

A few months ago, responding to some comments,. I tried to subtly alter this blog. Not very well, I suppose.

I know that if I promote the hell out of each blog post, about 60 people will read it. If not, about 50.

And a fair amount of them are first-time readers, who are most likely not sticking around.

So, here’s my current thinking:

I don’t think just reviewing tea is the right sort of blog for me.

At times it has been too personal. At ALL times it has been too self-centred.

I could review a tea shop down the road, but who ever comes to Adelaide?

So, where to go from here?  I mean , I’m already 300 words in and I’ve said nothing so far.

I have, however, got about a pint of Sikkim Temi slurped whilst writing this.

It’s time for that magic, tea! It’s time for the antioxidants and catechins and fluoride and tannin  and freshly filtered water to transform my incoherent thinking into a magical, shining blog about tea.

The thought that occurs  though, is that I like this Temi. It has an earthy, leathery aftertaste that I find irresistible.  This year’s is a little stronger after a few lighter years, but a little brewing adjustment and it remains my favourite single origin tea. It’s a shame the tea shop down the road no longer has this, but has switched away from loose leaf to crappy tea bags.

And there you have it – everything I was trying to avoid in one hit.

Recently, there has been a spate of tea bloggers blogging about tea blogging. So I guess it’s worth adding my two cents worth to that , if only to try to redeem this post.

To me, this blog is like the small talk you have around the tea table with your friends, your family, your community. Sometimes in those conversations you say or hear things said that rock your world, that move your mountain, that change your game. But mostly it’s fairly innocuous tales of everyday life.

People read my blog. I read theirs. We interact. We laugh. We cry. We sip. We try to make each other laugh, to be supportive, to warn, to educate, to share. We disagree and agree in equal measure whilst respecting those differences.

Like a community of friends should.

If you read a bunch of blogs by various people who interact, all of a sudden, it’s not a series of blogs. It’s a conversation in another form.

And like conversations everywhere for thousands of years, it’s lubricated by tea.

8 thoughts on “Under Pressure

  1. My favorite conversations have all been “lubricated by tea” and I wouldn’t have it any other way, even if we are really not even talking about anything at all. Tea and company is all I need.

  2. “If you read a bunch of blogs by various people who interact, all of a sudden, it’s not a series of blogs. It’s a conversation in another form.”

    That is close to being the main reason Tea Trade exists. We always thought there should be a blogging platform just for tea lovers, so we could communicate with each other, while reading the posts. Tea Trade’s activity stream allows these conversations to happen, I refer to it as “blog chatting.”

    Of course you can argue that you don’t need comments, and it’s enough if someone reads your blog. But that’s like arguing that you don’t need conversation because a monolog will do.

    I love that we can chat and laugh, talk, cry or a argue from blog to blog. I want to write a blog post about it “one day.”

    We love your posts, all of us one here. Of that I’m sure.

  3. It’s amazing how much you say when you’re “not saying anything.” Small talk. You’re right. It’s always been the most fun when it’s that. And when little things said in that “conversation” pop up somewhere else. We riff on each other and find thoughts inspired by something we read. Now @jopj do you see what you caused? So much reflection and interaction thanks to your post.

  4. Jackie’s right – that’s what it’s all about. And it made me feel that I already knew those folk I met last summer. We didn’t have to spend long on all those difficult, polite pleasantries!

  5. Do not despair, a Tv show about nothing lasted 9 seasons…. of course I am talking about Seinfeld…
    I am enjoying this blog, read it regularly, am a tea drinker but not devoted to it, I just love the Devotea’s way of writing….
    my 2c worth.

    1. Thank you for the kind words, Jacqui. Of course, I’ve never found any alleged comedian less funny that Jerry Seinfeld, but I assume what you are saying to me is “If one talentless hack can score nine years on TV, why can’t you?”. And that’s a very good point. Should make an appointment with NBC whilst I’m in the States.

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