Friday, April 17, 2009
If you’re as weary of the tea parties nonsense as I am, skip this.
I’ve had it with April’s Fools. I know in my heart they’re going to be 2009’s fools. Worse, twenty-first century fools.
April's Fools are angry with a president who can’t, in less than three months, salvage and repair the ship of state their ship of fools of choice plunged into the depths of darkest waters during eight lost, and found pirated, years. Their solution? Tea bags.
Earlier today, in a tea room filled with civilized people, I sipped tea properly steeped (from loose tea) and served from a teapot brimming with calm, not a tempest. [Full disclosure: in Manhattan, my two daughters own three charming "Alice's Tea Cup" restaurants where tea is an art and a pleasure, not a political protest.]
Tea, like patriotism, like love and sex, or hygiene, should never be tepid. Or tainted. It is not for revolutionaries, and despite the romance of The Boston Tea Party, should not be bagged or balled or pre-packaged. It should be savored, not “spun,” social, not “socialized.”
I wanted to know what the tea partiers were thinking. Where better to go than Twitter? After wading through twiddle heaped on twaddle, I was able to read the tea leaves. It was all about having fun! Mirth by malcontents who needed an excuse to party while they fumed, and then declared how fun it wz- u shdv bn ther! :)
All this while I was sipping Grand Keemun! I thought of the grand events I hadn’t missed—the Bicentennial, Fourth of July and New Year’s Eve fireworks, the end of the Vietnam War, the dawn of the twenty-first century, the election of the first black president of the United States. And then I thought of people I don’t want to know dressed in revolutionary war costumes, hoisting seditious signs unwittingly profaning their own misguided patriotism, dangling, waving and wasting teabags—sheep herded by one nefarious, self-serving right wing Australian who, unbelievably, is having many a field day telling Americans what to think and feel and do—at their expense—as he and his surrogates goad them into telling the rest of us we’re un-American and should go to Cuba!
One thing I can say in defense of those sheep—there’s not a lot of black sheep among them. (On the other hand, I can’t resist saying I inadvertently dredged up the slang meaning of tea-bagging and my reaction was “Ewe!”)
I thought about what these people I don’t know and don’t want to know drink. The evidence is clear: for starters, too much Kool-Aid. Matriculating to Pabst Blue Ribbon—"We're an American Brand"—and Boones Farms—"We're an American Brand." Encased for aging until, as it appears today, GOP stands for the Grand Ovaltine Party.
Tea parties. Brew-ha-hahs?