I’m here to say goodbye.
I just read that there is now an oyster-vending machine in my home town, and I think that’s a perfect way to introduce my last ever blog post. The oyster, that snot-textured harbinger of vomit-inducing fishiness, that molluscory kryptonite to anyone with sensible taste buds, is the perfect demonstration of the width and variety of human tastes.
And this blog, the one that will end forever when I stop typing today, is mainly about tastes.
I started blogging in 2006 and migrated to this platform in 2007. Ah, Tea Trade. What a wonderful home for my work you have been. Over 400 posts. Thank you Pete and Jackie.
Twitter was where I started engaging with the tea community, and twitter back then required great abbreviation skills to say anything. So this blog was the long form of my thoughts.
Let’s summarise what I have done:
- I’ve ranted about a lot of things.
- I’ve provided a few vague kernels of actual information
- I’ve improved my writing
- I’ve engaged with fabulous people.
Yeah, not much really.
But I’m proud of devising of the original Beasts of Brewdom, to both promote the idea that tea drinking is not an exclusively feminine pursuit, and of course, to skewer masculinity and ourselves in the process.
I’m proud to have toured the USA and the UK on the back of this blog and connected with friends everywhere that share the passion for tea.
I’m proud of different posts for different reasons – I think some of my travel stuff is great, a couple of my writer-y ones were a source of pride, I’ve shone a light on some interesting aspects of tea (not all of them good ones) and I’ve started conversations.
I’ve encouraged other bloggers, which I think is mandatory.
But the writing’s on the wall. The Beasts are no longer a blogging force : Ken stopped blogging circa 2014, and Geoff retired his tea blog last year. My Twitter friends from the early days have died or fallen away or just got sick of me, or mostly just fallen into comfortable occasional friendship as we go about our lives. Jo and Katrina and Nicole and Xavier and Jen are still around, but we don’t have the coterie we had on Twitter.
I’ve fought the good fight against tea bags and failed miserably. I’ve been the absolute king of footnotes* from the start to my very last one**. I’ve decried the places that serve rotten tea and elevated the ones that shine.
And I have always tried to be funny, and surprising.
And to leave people wanting more.
On that last point, too bad if you want more.
*Yes I have
**This one. Goodbye