Just Sell Me The Tea and Shut Up
It’s long been established that I love tea. Especially properly brewed loose leaf tea. It’s delicious and soothing and just all around awesome. When doing our Christmas shopping in the mall a few weeks ago, Thrack and I came across a brick and mortar location for Teavana, so obviously there was no choice but to go in. We’re having a pretty low key Christmas in terms of gifts, because we’re sleeping on the big gift of the year already.
They had samples which were okay, but so sweetened that I could hardly taste anything. Ugh. And the damn sales clerk did something that immediately pressed all my irritation buttons: preached alt med wellness bullshit. She took me from being happy and predisposed to buying a decent sampling of teas to being annoyed and wanting to get rid of her so I could get my couple of teas and get the fuck out of the store.
I usually love browsing teapots and assorted bits and bobs even though I really don’t have any intention of buying more stuff because I like the aesthetics. Hell, the look is why I bought my little Japanese cast iron kettle in the first place (although I bought mine in a California import shop rather than a tea shop, I think).
So when the clerk kept trying to sell me on tea because of amorphous health benefits and not so subtly tried to upsell me to one of their cast iron pots (because I already possess the best electric tea makers in existence, made by Breville and Zarafina), I was ready to yell at her. I know it’s her job and she probably doesn’t know a goddamned thing about why alt med bullshit is either harmful or pointlessly expensive or both, but you don’t push this kinds of shit on people so hard or you lose sales. It made me far less inclined to go back as well, even though I was impressed with the quality of the leaves (just the smell is intoxicating).
She tried and interesting tactic on the cast iron pot. Even though I had told her I already had a cast iron pot (seriously, how many does a person need?) and that I would much rather have tea made to the right temperature for the type of leaf in my Breville, she tried to tell me the cast iron was better for me. (It’s not, for two reasons I’ll talk about.)
First, you really only get benefits of cooking with cast iron if you’re iron deficient, whether from diet or your body’s processing of iron on a basic level like my Grams. I don’t have problems with iron saturation in my body, so there is no health benefit supported by evidence.
Secondly, all their fucking iron teapots are enameled inside, so you don’t get any benefit at all, even if you need it. Strike three, you’re out annoying sales clerk. So maybe I’ll go back to give them one more chance when it’s not Christmas madness or maybe I’ll stick to getting loose teas from my previous sources where they don’t lie to me about imaginary benefits. Even if they do think they give some magical benefit, they don’t proselytize and I can live with that.