1743: "Coffee"

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby wayne » Sat Oct 08, 2016 12:43 pm UTC

I've liked coffee and beer since before I could even talk. My father used to drink both (not at the same time; he wasn't that strange) and I suppose that I just wanted to be like him.
But I was the only one in any of my primary schools who brought coffee to school in my lunch. (I didn't bring beer. That was for after school!)
It was about high school that I learned that the alleged "coffee" and "beer" that I had so enjoyed were crap.
I went to a store that roasted coffee in-house, and tried some Ethiopian that had been green beans an hour before I drank it (black) and it absolutely ruined me for Folgers. (And all of the other major brands.)
In the same time frame, I was out with some friends, and tried some Moosehead (on tap) and that showed me that Budweiser was pure swill. (On tap, it is a great drink, but they must get the bottled stuff from the other end of the moose. Ugh!)
Nowadays, I brew my own beer, and can add anything I want. I have brewed beer with cardamom, though I haven't ever tried it in coffee.... Hmm...
I would grow my own coffee, too, but Indiana isn't the best place for that, and I don't have room for a greenhouse that size. Maybe I could find a nice acre or two to build one.

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby biohazard » Sat Oct 08, 2016 5:28 pm UTC

grkvlt wrote:If you can pick up the Gaggia cheap (mine was GBP 150.00) then go for it, sure. It's a reliable machine which looks pretty, from an Italian manufacturer, that does one thing for you well using no nonsense manual controls. But it's not at the high-end artisanal hipster scale of espresso generation by any means. If you're happy with the repeatability of your cups of coffee, and are using reasonable quality (say, Illy) espresso coffee, then I wouldn't change your machine. Since I happily and voluntarily drink instant coffee and frequent Starbucks, my opinion probably doesn't count for much with the real coffee lovers, but the Gaggia makes me happy...


I'm trying to figure out if it's worth my while to buy a better machine at some point even though I'm making iced lattes with it. At the moment I get my coffee from the bulk bins at a local grocery chain which is roasted about 20 miles away from me by a coffee shop in downtown tulsa. I've been very happy with their espresso roast so far. Illy seems very expensive :/ like 24 dollars a pound online the stuff I have been buying is more like 8. Even the stuff from double shot ,the other local roaster I know of, is more like 17 to 20 dollars a pound and supposedly super premium.

Source for the store brand coffee https://topecacoffee.com/
Haven't manged to visit them http://www.doubleshotcoffee.com/

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby Farabor » Sat Oct 08, 2016 11:29 pm UTC

I'm on episode 11 of Luke Cage, so I thought this title might refer to something COMPLETELY different....

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby gmalivuk » Sun Oct 09, 2016 2:52 pm UTC

What do you mean different? The people in the comic are clearly trying to have sex with each other but aren't quite sure how that works.
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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby Jorpho » Mon Oct 10, 2016 5:58 am UTC

The first time I worked in an environment with a communal coffee maker, someone informed me that the correct way to prepare a fresh pot was to just fill up the carafe and pour it back in the top. And hey, the stuff that comes out in the end is still brown, so how was I supposed to know you're also supposed to use fresh grounds every time..?

I did not like working at that place.

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby CharlieP » Mon Oct 10, 2016 8:30 am UTC

In my house the process is something like:

1. Say "Would you like a tea or coffee?"

2. Say "Coffee???"

3. Root around in cupboard for 95% full jar of Nescafé.

4. Remove lid.

5. Vainly stab solid black lump inside with a teaspoon.

6. Say "Would you like a tea?"
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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby CharlieP » Mon Oct 10, 2016 8:36 am UTC

Of course, while this strip is deliberately ridiculous for the purposes of comedy, I have actually been to places[1] where asking for a cup of tea has resulted in somebody bringing me a cup of hot water with a packaged teabag on the side. Horrific but true.



[1] Either countries that aren't the UK, Ireland, Australia or New Zealand, or, more worryingly, modern hotels in my own country.
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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby CharlieP » Mon Oct 10, 2016 8:43 am UTC

xtifr wrote:It doesn't make you special to dislike coffee. It just makes you yet another example of the wonderful variety in which humans come.)


Not special, just super. 8-)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supertaster#Specific_food_sensitivities
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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby da Doctah » Mon Oct 10, 2016 12:07 pm UTC

CharlieP wrote:asking for a cup of tea has resulted in somebody bringing me a cup of hot water with a packaged teabag on the side. Horrific but true.


And on Amtrak, ordering a glass of iced tea will, after much negotiation, get you the same plus a glass of ice.

Amused the Russian guy across the table from me no end.

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby orthogon » Mon Oct 10, 2016 12:41 pm UTC

CharlieP wrote:Of course, while this strip is deliberately ridiculous for the purposes of comedy, I have actually been to places[1] where asking for a cup of tea has resulted in somebody bringing me a cup of hot water with a packaged teabag on the side. Horrific but true.

At least they're accepting that you can do it much better than they can. The way they do it at the coffee places now is similar, except that they add the milk while the teabag is still in.

I once tried for quite a while to negotiate a cup of tea with cold milk at Atocha station in Madrid. In the end I ended with a cup of cold milk with a teabag in it.
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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby Soupspoon » Mon Oct 10, 2016 12:57 pm UTC

CharlieP wrote:asking for a cup of tea has resulted in somebody bringing me a cup of hot water with a packaged teabag on the side. Horrific but true.

The logic behind that is simple. Given that the tea is teabag-tea (rather than a more artisanal/traditional/technological solution), rather than risk over/under-stewing the cup (or mug, but mug-tea providers are rarely so discerning so long as a spoon can stand up, otherwise unsupported, or so I am led to believe), they make the presumption that not only is the customer always right, but they also know how to brew their own cuppa from the 'raw' ingredients. And if they get it wrong they can always dunk the bag back in, or ask for some more hot water or even re-order and try again, but it no longer reflects upon the establishment or requires them to retain the skills of a psychic taffination-sommelier at all times during which tea may be requested...

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby Flumble » Mon Oct 10, 2016 2:05 pm UTC

CharlieP wrote:Of course, while this strip is deliberately ridiculous for the purposes of comedy, I have actually been to places[1] where asking for a cup of tea has resulted in somebody bringing me a cup of hot water with a packaged teabag on the side. Horrific but true.

I've never actively thought about that. As far as I can tell, it's 50/50 how they serve tea around here. Naturally, if you're going for a high-tea, the employees will do the preparations for you. (had that once, and was one of the few who could stomach the darkest of teas... with a bag of sugar of course) But a random café/bar/restaurant is equally likely to serve a side of tea bags or prepared tea.

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby CharlieP » Mon Oct 10, 2016 2:10 pm UTC

Soupspoon wrote:
CharlieP wrote:asking for a cup of tea has resulted in somebody bringing me a cup of hot water with a packaged teabag on the side. Horrific but true.

The logic behind that is simple. Given that the tea is teabag-tea (rather than a more artisanal/traditional/technological solution), rather than risk over/under-stewing the cup (or mug, but mug-tea providers are rarely so discerning so long as a spoon can stand up, otherwise unsupported, or so I am led to believe), they make the presumption that not only is the customer always right, but they also know how to brew their own cuppa from the 'raw' ingredients. And if they get it wrong they can always dunk the bag back in, or ask for some more hot water or even re-order and try again, but it no longer reflects upon the establishment or requires them to retain the skills of a psychic taffination-sommelier at all times during which tea may be requested...


The logic is simple but fatally flawed - to make a decent cup/pot of tea you need boiling water, not hot water. The Government even made information films on how to do it right during WW2, such was the importance of good tea to public morale.

Even worse than ordering a tea and getting a cup of hot water with teabag on the side is going to a conference and being promised a "tea break", when in fact the offering is simply large urns of either coffee or hot water, with a selection of tea bags in a bowl. Since the urns are rarely labelled, the hot water retains a substantially-more-than-homeopathic memory of the coffee that previously inhabited its vessel. :(
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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby Soupspoon » Mon Oct 10, 2016 2:33 pm UTC

CharlieP wrote:The logic is simple but fatally flawed - to make a decent cup/pot of tea you need boiling water, not hot water.
I did not notice that particular distinction.

This has nothing to do with
Soupspoon wrote:I'm so-so with coffee. But don't ask me for a mug of tea...
...as I do actually use freshly boiled water, but probably doesn't help if I don't understand the time limits I may be not be quite adhering to.

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby astrus » Mon Oct 10, 2016 5:30 pm UTC

I am not a coffee person, I can't stand the stuff. Incidentally the same holds true for alcohol and sports so society often leads me to entertain the thought I might actually be some kind of alien lifeform or a freak mutation.

My limited exposure to the art of serving coffe has me believing the process is as follows:
1) Ask what kind of coffee is desired
2) Completely disregard the answer given to your question. Instead, start a five minute barrage of largely made-up words that denotes the available variations of coffee.
2b) If there is no prompt answer or the recipient seems confused repeat the barrage, switching out words here and there just for the heck of it.
3) Upon receiving an answer pour a cup of coffee from the one jar of instant coffee that is actually available.

My general environment may not be the right one to order coffee.
I once was helping out with arranging a meeting. Someone asked about decaffeinated coffe, I relayed the question to the responsible parties and was met with "Oh that's fine, we'll just stick a 'decaf' label on one of the jars."

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby svenman » Mon Oct 10, 2016 5:43 pm UTC

CharlieP wrote:Of course, while this strip is deliberately ridiculous for the purposes of comedy, I have actually been to places[1] where asking for a cup of tea has resulted in somebody bringing me a cup of hot water with a packaged teabag on the side. Horrific but true.

In all fairness, there is no right way to do this unless it involves letting you watch actual boiling water being poured over the tea, which will not be feasible in a lot of locations. If I get a cup of tea with the teabag already in, then there may be room for hope that the water was indeed boiling hot at the moment it was poured over the tea, but I get to guess how long ago that was.

Also, if the use of teabags is among the things you object to, they are on the other side much more convenient to discard after use than loose tea. In addition, hygiene concerns or regulations may in some places mandate the use of individually packaged tea bags for each customer.

Serving tea is hard to get right for everyone.
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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby PinkShinyRose » Mon Oct 10, 2016 5:48 pm UTC

Maybe the comics methods are more suitable for making tea. Except you should vacuum the water first, then put the plastic container over the stovetop, and then, if there's no hole in the container, you could vacuum the tea.

Flumble wrote:I've never actively thought about that. As far as I can tell, it's 50/50 how they serve tea around here. Naturally, if you're going for a high-tea, the employees will do the preparations for you. (had that once, and was one of the few who could stomach the darkest of teas... with a bag of sugar of course) But a random café/bar/restaurant is equally likely to serve a side of tea bags or prepared tea.

Lately I've increasingly been served a glass of hot water (still heavily steaming, but no longer bubbling) and offered a choice of teabags from a box.

CharlieP wrote:The logic is simple but fatally flawed - to make a decent cup/pot of tea you need boiling water, not hot water. The Government even made information films on how to do it right during WW2, such was the importance of good tea to public morale.

You're asking a lot of us non-UK-citizens if you expect us to know how your governments' wartime propaganda people liked their tea.

Besides, using boiling water irrespective of the type of tea your making sounds really wrong from a culinary point of view. Of course, from a public health point of view it seems sensible, especially in wartime, to have the populace boil everything before they drink it.

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby speising » Mon Oct 10, 2016 7:26 pm UTC

The Royal Society of Chemistry ought to know!

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby PinkShinyRose » Mon Oct 10, 2016 7:53 pm UTC

I'm not sure I'd trust chemists as an authority for culinary decisions.

EDIT: except when they're the pharmacist kind and specialised in Chinese traditional medicine or similar.

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby Soupspoon » Mon Oct 10, 2016 8:25 pm UTC

PinkShinyRose wrote:I'm not sure I'd trust chemists as an authority for culinary decisions.

EDIT: except when they're the pharmacist kind and specialised in Chinese traditional medicine or similar.

I'd take anyone specialising in CTM with a pinch of salt (to "soften hard masses", apparently), especially given as how it contributes to the potential extinction of creatures across the world in obtaining odd substances that have no real theraputic uses in humans...

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby rmsgrey » Tue Oct 11, 2016 12:01 am UTC

CharlieP wrote:5. Vainly stab solid black lump inside with a teaspoon.


Use a skewer - or at least a fork. A spoon is too blunt.

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby orthogon » Tue Oct 11, 2016 4:02 am UTC

astrus wrote:I once was helping out with arranging a meeting. Someone asked about decaffeinated coffe, I relayed the question to the responsible parties and was met with "Oh that's fine, we'll just stick a 'decaf' label on one of the jars."

That's possibly OK. I suspect a large part of the pharmacological effect of coffee is placebo. As long as you think you're getting the good stuff, it will wake you up; and as long as you believe you're drinking decaf, you'll sleep fine. (Also, AIUI caffeine only really counters the effects of caffeine withdrawal in addicts, it doesn't actually have a significant stimulant effect of its own). On the subject of decaf, it's interesting that you can't taste the difference at all: presumably caffeine is tasteless. If only the same were true of alcohol-free beer! You'd never mistake that for the real thing.

Back to the strip, I bought a gift mug in the January sales once that said "how to make coffee" on one side and "how to make tea" on the other. The coffee instructions were just for instant coffee (though they didn't say so): put coffee in mug, add hot water, stir, serve. The tea instructions on the mug were pretty bad: put teabag in mug, add hot water, add milk. (You should take out the bag before you add the milk). But the box it came in apparently applied to an earlier version that was even more wrong, and had apparently been "corrected'. It was basically the same as the coffee instructions: put tea in mug, add hot water etc. Tea leaves, presumably.

I got the impression that the joke was supposed to be that making tea and coffee is so easy that you wouldn't need instructions. So it was unintentionally hilarious that, actually, it turns out that the designers did in fact need exactly that.
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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby Mikeski » Tue Oct 11, 2016 6:08 am UTC

orthogon wrote:
astrus wrote:"[...] we'll just stick a 'decaf' label on one of the jars."

That's possibly OK.

...as long as you don't mind potentially hospitalizing or killing people. My father has an irregular heartbeat, and caffeine exacerbates it.

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby Angua » Tue Oct 11, 2016 6:47 am UTC

I don't know, I'm pretty sure I can feel when they give me a non-decaf mocha (I really do feel anxious and twitchy), and my friend had a headache for 2 days until I noticed that he'd bought decaf coffee.
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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby orthogon » Tue Oct 11, 2016 7:00 am UTC

OK, I was only half serious, and caffeine is undoubtedly psychoactive. I was more thinking that the physiological effects would take time to kick in (like a two-day headache) whereas the immediate psychosomatic effect of having a cup of coffee would be the same for caffeinated and decaf.

In our house the two are kept separate and labeled, so if Mikeski's dad ever comes round he can rest assured that he'll be served the appropriate fluid.
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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby svenman » Tue Oct 11, 2016 3:52 pm UTC

PinkShinyRose wrote:Besides, using boiling water irrespective of the type of tea your making sounds really wrong from a culinary point of view.

That's a valid point, thanks for the reminder. It's only black tea that is supposed to be brewed with boiling water, while green tea is widely recommended to be brewed with less hot water; I've seen 80°C (= 176°F) as a recommended temperature, but I expect the acceptable tolerances are greater here than with black tea.

So for those who are equally willing to drink black or green tea but are particular about their tea being brewed at the right temperature, an order of green tea may be a possibility where the water is available only hot but not boiling.

If, however, your tea-making sensibilities are offended by the necessity to soak a teabag in a cup of hot water, as opposed to the water being properly poured onto the tea(bag), then I am afraid I'm out of suggestions.
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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby Quizatzhaderac » Tue Oct 11, 2016 4:20 pm UTC

PinkShinyRose wrote:You're asking a lot of us non-UK-citizens if you expect us to know how your governments' wartime propaganda people liked their tea.
Right after that "Keep calm, carry on..." thing, it goes into the detailed instructions on making a proppa' cuppa'.
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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby Keyman » Tue Oct 11, 2016 8:30 pm UTC

You tea guys have nothing to complain about
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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby CharlieP » Wed Oct 12, 2016 6:28 am UTC

There is no secret really - that's a fallacy.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vnvYymrCn4g
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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby pogrmman » Wed Oct 12, 2016 4:58 pm UTC

orthogon wrote:OK, I was only half serious, and caffeine is undoubtedly psychoactive. I was more thinking that the physiological effects would take time to kick in (like a two-day headache) whereas the immediate psychosomatic effect of having a cup of coffee would be the same for caffeinated and decaf.


Yeah, the effects are noticable. Especially when you have a rediculous amount (like the time I was helping my dad tune in a new espresso machine -- I had ~20 shots which translates to a huge dose of caffeine. Not fun at all -- violent shakes, awful headache, couldn't focus on anything (even worse than normal!), nausea. I don't recommend doing that.

They are also noticable in the other way. I've got ADHD, and a single cup of coffee helps me focus better -- I also have a little more control directing it as well. I dont take meds because they're expensive, I don't like taking medicine, and I have a lot of experience dealing with managing my focus without meds. I do have coffee occasionally though because I like exploring the different flavors and such that you get out of it. I'm drinking a natural Ethiopian one right now and it's excellent -- the cup is super complex. It's sweet, with enough astringency to make it interesting. It's got strong cherry notes that fade into notes of citrus and finally minty and floral notes.

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby xtifr » Fri Oct 14, 2016 10:16 pm UTC

Even with a moderate dose, you can tell the difference. Though I freely admit there is also a psychosomatic effect. But I have, at least once, been able to tell that I had mistakenly gotten decaf from the fact that the caffeine never kicked in. Took about half an hour for me to be certain. And I generally limit myself to one cup a day.
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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby Quizatzhaderac » Mon Oct 17, 2016 8:03 pm UTC

The thing about recursion problems is that they tend to contain other recursion problems.

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby gabrielg » Wed Oct 19, 2016 9:03 pm UTC

cellocgw wrote:who out there in xkcd-forum land remembers vacuum-brew coffee pots? [quick look at Amazon: Oh me yarm they're back, in total hipster all-glass models!]


So THAT was this comic about. A word game. I'm not a native English speaker and I was wondering what a vacuum cleaner has to do with coffee.
In Spanish they're called with absolutely unrelated words: "aspiradora" and "cafetera de sifón" / "cafetera de vacío".

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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby SecondTalon » Thu Oct 20, 2016 11:11 am UTC

somitomi wrote:
Heimhenge wrote:Started drinking coffee back in high school because "that's what adults did" and it was supposed to help with staying up late and cramming for a test. Hated the bitter taste, even with cream and sugar added, but forced myself to learn to like it.

I think that is the only reason people like beer. Which made me wonder why there are things, that supposedly everyone on the face of Earth likes (both beer and coffee being examples of this phenomenon).

The beer thing is what I thought before I tried things outside of Pilsners.

Turns out Pilsners suck. Brown Ales are pretty good.
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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby Liri » Fri Oct 21, 2016 2:33 pm UTC

Coming from the Southeastern US, my mother foolishly ignored my warnings and ordered an iced tea in the northern reaches of Queensland, Australia. The bemused barista filled a glass with water and ice and dropped a green tea bag in.

I've never really liked coffee. At the coffee shop I went to in college, I ordered it because I wasn't going to pay more money for something (tea) I could make better myself. Then my parents got me a vacuum press for looseleaf tea/coffee (thorough cleaning after making the latter) and I was ruined.

I was a sophomore or junior in college when beer "clicked" for me.
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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby Copper Bezel » Sat Oct 22, 2016 6:16 pm UTC

Liri wrote:Coming from the Southeastern US, my mother foolishly ignored my warnings and ordered an iced tea in the northern reaches of Queensland, Australia. The bemused barista filled a glass with water and ice and dropped a green tea bag in.

That's rather difficult to picture. Should I assume that this was out of ignorance, or nationalistic spite?
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Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby Liri » Sun Oct 23, 2016 12:55 pm UTC

It was certainly ignorance.
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Location: UK/[St. Kitts and] Nevis Occasionally, I migrate to the US for a bit

Re: 1743: "Coffee"

Postby Angua » Sun Oct 23, 2016 7:35 pm UTC

Copper Bezel wrote:
Liri wrote:Coming from the Southeastern US, my mother foolishly ignored my warnings and ordered an iced tea in the northern reaches of Queensland, Australia. The bemused barista filled a glass with water and ice and dropped a green tea bag in.

That's rather difficult to picture. Should I assume that this was out of ignorance, or nationalistic spite?

TBF, when I went to the deep south and asked my aunt for hot tea, she put a tea bag in some water and popped it in the microwave for 15secs.

It was ok....
'Look, sir, I know Angua. She's not the useless type. She doesn't stand there and scream helplessly. She makes other people do that.'
GNU Terry Pratchett


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