16 January, 2017

Congregation of Vapours

I have of late, but wherefore I know not... lost all my mirth.  Foregone all custom of exercise.

And, indeed, it goes so heavily with my disposition that this goodly frame, the Earth, seems to me... a sterile promontory.


However, what better way to desterilise one's promontory than with some EoT?

This little baby has been sitting in a box, on a shelf, in my office, calling to me.  Every day, I come into the lab, and it starts its siren-song.  DRIIINK ME.  Every day, I bustle around pretending to be busy on something or other, and, before I know it, the end of the day is upon us, and it's nursery pick-up time.

But not today!  Today, we stand and fight.  Today, we are all Kunlu!


OK, this isn't the Kunlu, but it's a nice recent (Darjeeling) tea all the same


It looks as if the old addage "You snooze, you lose" is true yet again; as I peruse the EoT web-site, I learn that many of the 2016 cakes have long since been vanquished by a ravenous public, starved for affection and good tea.  Thus it ever was, and rightly so - it's good to see the ol' Essence pimping its wares effectively.  Long may the pimping proceed.

If there is one (just one) thing that bothers me about the charming, dazzling white of the EoT website it's the fact that every cake seems to cost between £0.08 and £0.40, judging by the main page.  "What a great price!", thought no-one, ever.  Instead, we ceaselessly have to click through to each individual page to determine the actual price of each cake - presumably, this clicking is the point.  It rather feels like putting the milk at the far end of the supermarket, so that you have to walk past shampoo and haemorrhoid cream to reach it.  It feels like those shops that put chocolate bars next to cash tills, on the hope that some poor child will convince their tired parents to buy them a package of solidified diabetes while they queue to leave the shop.  It really sticks in my craw - and, Gentle Reader, if there's anything I don't like, it's a sticky craw.  I keep my craw glisteningly clear of all such nonsense.  It's a source of pride.

So, this cake doesn't cost "£0.20", which is the price shown to me by the product page, as it lies to me through its fetid teeth.  The cost is, in fact £32, which is a rather larger number than £0.20, but which is a more accurate number than £0.20.  Also, this cake is "Out of stock".  I believe I may have whispered "MOTHERF*CKER" to myself, at that stage of the proceedings.

The tea.  As the description on the EoT page reads ("Perhaps not for girls, or for people who are girlymen cowards"), this is rather a bitter tea, and tastes like KUDINGCHA - bitter tea, of the astringent kind that puckers not just one's lips, but every single last sphincter that is physiologically available at the time of consumption.  However, it's a nice bitter.  It's long, strong, and thoroughly absorbent.

In form and moving, how express and admirable: the sweetness is enduring and potent, like the irony of a reality-TV host being elected president of a third-world country somewhere out west.  It has the bittersweet tang that stays with you, like the economic consequences of half a country voting against its best interests to leave a large socioeconomic union of nations.

Which is to say, it's challenging.  If you like a challenge, then drink it today: let's make shengpu great again!
He quoth with irony, for the literal-reading folk amongst us.

31 December, 2016

Twenty Sixteen

I
drinking my coffee
before the interview
making it last

II
buying a ticket
to buckingham palace -
yes, a return please




III
the old lady's dog
watching the ambulance
drive away

IV
kneeling in chapel
before made my offering
were those lamps lit?





V
there goes a cupboard -
old kitchen burns quickly
in the garden stove

VI
surprise visit -
coming home early to
the armadillo




VII
school interview
holding his rubber duck
the three year old

VIII
the englishman lost
asking directions from
budapest pigeon




IX
returning home
cold and wet on my cheeks
dog dribble
(from a dream)

X
twelve boys
twelve waterpistols
father has the high ground




XI
before opera
the opening movement
waffles, beer, ice-cream

XII
dementia book
lists things he has forgotten
front cover - goldfish

XIIb
the open door
welcomes to Midnight Mass
my drunken self