Does anyone remember that blog "Stuff White People Like"? It always made us laugh, self-stereotyping through gentle jabs. During a recent meeting, Marketing Coordinator Christy Garfield and I were brainstorming so hard that our ears were emitting smoke and we decided we needed a blog post that was our own variety of stereotyping our beloved tea lovers.
In fact, "tea" was No. 13 on that list of Stuff White People Like, which was discontinued in 2010. The description included this gem, "If you find yourself in a situation with a white person, acceptable things to say include, 'I'm really into tea right now,' or 'my favorite thing is to get a nice cup of tea and curl up in a chair with a good book.' But do not remind them about the role of colonialism in tea, it will make them sad."
Let's take it a bit further, shall we? We're not here to generalize but ... well, actually we are here to generalize, because that's what a stereotype is all about. We are well aware that tea fans come in all colors, shapes and sizes — just check out our own fans (that's you). You might be 70 percent women, we estimate, but you're also men who are relatively rabid about ordering our tea in 100-sachet packs and spreading the word about two leaves™ tea on Twitter. And we love you all.
So here goes; and while we fully expect you to laugh with us and disagree with us, we also hope you'll share your own items that Tea People Like in the comments, or on social media. Use #StuffTeaPeopleLike on Twitter, and maybe we'll start a revolution. (A very quiet revolution. We don't think tea people like noise.)
Stuff Tea People Like
1. Downton Abbey
Seems like every time we post something regarding drinking tea and watching Downton Abbey, our Facebook Insights (the little graph that shows us how many people "liked" and commented on something we posted) goes through the roof. But quite frankly, we can't blame you — the show, while definitely a high-class soap opera, has made drinking tea cool again. And for that, we owe show creator Julian Fellowes a solid.
2. Rainy, miserable afternoons
3. Birds (mostly as a design motif)
4. Tea cozies, especially stylishly handmade cozies for tea cups
5. Photos of other people drinking tea, but not themselves
We can't tell you how much free tea we've tried to give away to our fans by asking them to take a picture of themselves drinking tea for our Facebook page, and yet almost no one enters contests like those. They'd much rather hit the "thumbs up" button on a photo of someone else drinking a cup of tea, or post a photo of one of our sachets in their favorite mugs. It's okay that you're shy. We think that's cute.
6. Free tea
On the other hand, anytime we hold a simple trivia question contest online, you all come out of the woodwork. Again, no one's blaming you. Free tea is fabulous, no?
7. Stationery and fountain pens
8. Electric tea kettles
9. Finding other uses for tea bags
De-puffing eyes, cleaning windows, composting, whatever.
10. Organic honey
11. Not being tan
Tannin, not tanning.
12. Used book stores
Bonus points for cardigans.
14. Bow ties
15. Indie films
Not long ago, we welcomed a new staff member, Chloé Burton, who is now our marketing associate. Chloé is the exact member of the Millennial Generation that we needed doing things like creating and managing our Pinterest page, and as soon as we connected Chloé's creative energy for Pinterest with Facebook, all bets were off. This girl posts one cute image of a beautifully drawn teapot she's found online with clever wording like, "Blood, sweat and tea", and 73 people hit the "like" button on Facebook, while 26 people share the image with their friends.
17. Anything infused with green tea.
Chocolate, vodka, jasmine rice, you name it.
19. Farmers Markets
20. Ballet flats
21. National Public Radio
22. Book clubs
23. Expressing interest in knitting but not necessarily doing so
24. Tea houses and tea rooms of any sort
25. Poetry contests
Remind us to combine a poetry contest with some sarcasm sometime, would you?
27. Handmade mugs
28. Avant garde light fixtures
They're damn comfortable. And forget saving them just for river trips, tea people love them in chilly weather with ... socks. Tea People sometimes eschew fashion.
30. Any and all facts about how good tea is for you
31. Cocktails made with tea
31. Cucumber sandwiches with the crusts cut off, and scones
32. Vintage clothing, but not "Thrift Shopping" à la Macklemore
(We know some Tea People aren't going to get that, so we provide you with this link.)
33. Ordering Earl Grey like Captain Jean-Luc Picard did on Star Trek: Enterprise
"Tea. Earl Grey. Hot." (Click on that to watch greatness in action.)
34. Loose tea and all its accoutrement — scales, filter baskets, small puddles of tea on your desk.
36. Fancy socks
37. Hostess gifts
39. Plush chairs
41. Tom's of Maine toothpaste
42. Pictures of cute pets and teacups
(Preferably cute pets sitting in teacups)
43. Portland but not Seattle
44. Baking bread
45. Becoming a self-designated member of the grammar police
46. Real Simple magazine
47. Being asked, "How do you take your tea?"
As opposed to, "Whatdaya want in it?"
Especially that mug with a drawing of Lionel Richie that says, "Hello ... is it tea you're looking for?"
49. Having a designated tea cabinet/drawer that preferably overflowing — bonus points if it's primarily two leaves tea™
50. Audio books
Especially while in floppy hats and if vintage teacups are used as planters.
52. The Breville One-Touch Tea Maker
Oh man, you've gotta watch the video here. (Don't watch it if you don't have $250 to spend on a high-tech tea maker. Do watch if you want to hear someone pronounce "aroma" like "aromer".)
53. James Franco
This one is hard to pin down. Is it because James Franco appears in so many weird, indie movies? Is it that he's a hard worker who appears in movies while teaching at NYU and scheduling a regular gig on a soap opera? We think he's just your type. Sometimes.
54. Drinking tea with weird names like Pu-ehr or Oolong.
You know you sound cool ordering up a Lapsang Souchong.
55. Gourmet chocolate
56. Ironic fancy teacups
58. Gently pointing out their own opinions
Tea People don't yell, do you?
Come on, commenters — what else ya got?