"Tea Turds!!" or, pearls among swine

Have you ever given a special tea as a gift to someone who was not a tea enthusiast? Just on the chance they were “ready,” or would just enjoy it?

At her birthday party — after quite a few cocktails — a dear, long-time friend opened my present to her: five balls of special tea, collected by scholars in China who refused to divulge the location of the wild tea trees where they gathered the tea. (No, I don’t remember the particular name/variety of tea.) My friend drank tea regularly because of her English mum, and she was working on her doctorate dissertation, so I thought tea hand-picked by scholars would be a terrific unique gift for her. Unfortunately when she opened the tin in the darkened restaurant all she saw were five unappetizing lumps. “It’s a precious tea from China…” I started, but one of her friends yelled “Tea turds!!” and the other friends chorused “tea turds!!!” in drunken glee for a few minutes. I could tell by the look on the birthday girl’s face that she would never be able to treasure my thoughtful (and expensive) gift.

What about you? Did you ever give a special tea gift only to see it land in unappreciative hands?

1 Reply
Uniquity said

I’ve just learned not to give tea gifts unless I am positive it is a tea lover and even then that it is a tea that either already know and love or have wanted to try. I use casual visits to try to ‘convert’ people and stick to things I know they love for gifts.

I’ve also had it in reverse – yes, I love tea but there are teas I like and teas I don’t so I understand that it is difficult to get tea for me. I have received tea I would never select myself in the past and though I drank or re-homed it, I think the giver always knows when they didn’t quite hit the target.

Or I just put too much work into gift giving. :)

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