I have always had a deep suspicion of certain tea drinkers. There’s something about their righteousness that rankles. Come on, you know what I mean: why do tea drinkers have to hold their cup in both hands and say things like, “Oh, I needed that.” Needed that? All you are drinking is a few old leaves in hot water. And as for the squeeze-of-lemon-in-hot-water crew: grow up.
I imagine Jack Dorsey, the founder of a well-known social-media platform, likes tea. This week news broke of his supposed diet regime which, he says, consists of five meals in the week and no food at weekends. Oh and a lot of ice baths. I hope he’s spoofing us. But like the tea puritans, if for real, he’s just another signatory to a sect of virtue eating and drinking, which always comes with a need to broadcast to anyone who’ll listen – in 140 calories or less.
Tea, like many of these odd diets, also seems to be relied upon as a way of negating other excessive behaviour – so you can drink your weight in albariño after work as long as you hit the lapsang souchong come morning (although Mr Dorsey doesn’t sound like he ever lets rip). That’s the other thing that puts me off the tea brigade: it’s all a bit fake.
I understand the urge. This week at Salone del Mobile in Milan we ended up at the bar that plays host to numerous itinerant design folk and the spritzes did seem to come my way with haste. The following morning, feeling a little dusty, I found myself online booking a line-up of yoga classes for later in the week as if a few downward dogs would work like hair of the dog. But the real solution was simpler and closer to hand: coffee. Lots of coffee. While tea drinkers sit in Cath Kidston kitchens, the coffee drinkers can gather at a polished metal coffee bar. A quick shot and you are back in the game. And unlike Mr Dorsey, I also had a nice breakfast.