Posts in Reveries

Meet Johnny’s New Friend

Behold! At long last, Johnny is now in possession of the most charming, beautiful and well-behaved tea pet of them all: Carmen the Yak.

Here’s the backstory, for those of you so starved for content that you’ll read any schmoe’s half-baked self-pity party:

I’ve fallen in love with so many tea pets.

First, there was Bradley, the tea bat, who was almost as adorable as myself. One day, I got to Phoenix Tea and discovered that Bradley had gone to a better place, surely basking in the love of better people than Johnny (such people supposedly exist). I was crushed, and drank no tea for 3 years because every sip tasted like the complete absence of bats. On summer evenings, I would hear the tweets of bats in the Autozone parking lot and call out “Oh Bradley, is that you?” until the police came. They never understood.

There was Cornelius, the tea rat sitting on a bag of tea money… who I didn’t love, but with whom I built a suspiciously comfortable mutual tolerance. He left too, clearly feeling as little true affection for me as I did for him.

Then there were the slugs. One after another, they appeared on the tea table; one after another, they were named whimsically old-fashioned names; one after another, they left for distant lands, to drink tea and cavort as only truly free tea slugs cavort.

After so much sadness, I made the only respectable choice: I bought a friend.

Let’s celebrate with a cup of tea, shall we?



cats drinking tea

The REAL Tea Party


And when
to a glass dish of clotted cream is
added a sunny morning, a well-laid
breakfast table and a hissing tea urn,
life looks at least cheerful.

From “As the Crow Flies,” by Walter Phelps Dodge (1893)

Our Lady of the Flowering Teas

I am ready for an incomparable experience, a Divine Tea that Blooms. No jasmine pearl this, no hongcha cone. Green orb streaked with promise of new hope.

A gaggle of tea spheresAwaiting the scald 

Even here, in the lair of Johnny Teacup, smelling the exhaust of cars and yellowing newsprint, water pours on this orb in its prison of glass. Intimacy evolves its alchemy. A solemn marble stairway leads to corridors covered with red carpets, upon which the tea steeps noiselessly. The blooming of the tea shocks me, and I fall swooning to the ground, head full of delicious songs of passion and pain.

The tea is still brewing, and now I am afraid. The promise of a delicious and delightful brew pursues me and I pursue it patiently. The blooms are clearly bent on destroying me.

flower-brewedA single petal

Didn’t I see, on my way to the tea shop, seven tea-picking monkeys resting weary from their fierce impossible pickings, questioning the stars through seven pots of teabag tea as they sat around a table that perhaps turned; then, a sun bear on a bicycle who was carrying a message from god to god, holding between his teeth, by the metal handle, a round, lighted tea kettle, the flame of which, as it reddened his face, also heated the water? So pure a marvel that he was unaware of being a marvel. I turn myself from this fantasy of bear and monkeys to the tea at hand, it has bloomed, these underwater fireworks threaten to torch my love for all other teas and leave me bereft and silent…

On me, under me, with my mouth pressed to the cup of blooming tea, I sing to it uncouth songs that move and shiver through its lovely leaves. To no avail: the flavor is gone, if it were ever there.

Bloom of the seaBeached teaSlowly but surely they must have stripped this tea of every kind of flavor, and so made a saint of it.

[this post was inspired by Our Lady of the Flowers, a very special novel by  Jean Genet]

Our Lady of the Flowers (Cover)



Finally, a tea blog that tells the TRUTH that you can’t hear ANYWHERE ELSE


Get ready for tea information and reviews, presented with


by the


Johnny Teacup!