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Holiday Gift Suggestions

December 12, 2008

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This being the time of year when everyone starts getting all stressed out and panicky about buying stuff for other people, I thought it would be a good time to offer you three hopefully useful recommendations for the tea lovers on your lists. Or, even better, you can talk other people into buying these things for you instead.

1. Terrorist Teapot and Tea Cosy: The only thing I dislike more intensely than tacky kitsch novelty teapots are decorative objects that look like teapots but do not perform the function of brewing or serving tea. This item is completely serviceable, so it avoids the second category, but it could in all fairness be considered a novelty. Contrary to my own personal rules about tradition and suitability, I find this set charmingly clever. I might even buy one of these myself, to use the next time I feel the need to serve British style tea to people with a perverse sense of humor, which is really not as often as it ought to be.

The Terrorist Teapot Set certainly appears to be quite functional and well-designed. Unlike those really goofy, loud, floral-printed fully teapot-smothering tea cosies, this nice little balaclava appears to keep the pot toasty without having to be removed for pouring. The teapot itself, seen in the second photograph in its bare state, brews 1.5 liters of tea, enough for you and four or five fellow miscreants to each have a large cuppa’ as you sit around the table plotting the disruption of polite society. You can order this wonderful set from Suck UK.

2. The Haunted Tea-Cosy: A Dispirited and Distasteful Diversion for Christmas by Edward Gorey: I love Edward Gorey, and this great little book is particularly appropriate for those with a dark sensibility or a cynical apprehension of Christmas, plus it’s tea-related and inexpensive. Here’s a quote:

“Waiting for the week’s teabag to steep, he wrote by hand several letters to the newspapers anent the price of a typewriter ribbon having risen the day of the winter solstice.

The tea-cosy suddenly twitched and from beneath it leapt a creature many times the size of the space within, even if it had not already held the teapot.”

Note: the word “anent” is archaic, but is a real word. I had to look it up. It means “in regard to” or “about.” You can order the book from the link above, which goes to Amazon.com, or from a myriad of other booksellers. It’s not hard to find.

3. “Tea is the new black.” travel mug. This ceramic travel mug can be purchased from our new Cafe Press store, along with similarly themed mugs in different sizes. They have the saying in bold, easy-to-read-across-the-room type, with “gongfugirl.com” very small below. The standard mugs would be particularly nice to bring to the office. The travel mug would be good for sipping tea during the commute in the office vanpool. You, or the lucky person whose stocking you stuff this into, would be the envy of all co-workers. You could even buy one of the mugs for that annoying, company-wide, mandatory-participation “secret Santa” nonsense. Our shop also offers stylish black tee-shirts with the same declaration in white, a rather plain tote bag and a tile coaster.

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