A site of satirical musings, commentary and/or rhetorical criticism of the world at large.

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Location: Southeastern, Pennsylvania, United States

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Tea Time

There was an interesting article in The Philadelphia Inquirer recently about the British tradition of taking tea in the afternoon. The location was curious: the help wanted section in a Sunday edition. There was no byline, except a small note that the article was put together by the advertising department. Obviously they didn’t have enough job ads to fill the space, but that’s a trivial observance.

Being an unemployed person (at that time) I read this and thought, “Okay, I don’t have a job, you people can’t find enough employers to place job ads in this space, and yet you believe I have the financial resources to purchase the silver service, finger food, stationary for the invitations, supplies to make hand-crafted doilies, and all of the different teas I’ll need to do a proper high tea?”

There are several reasons why there will never be a tea event at Chez Gunther.

First, there is the matter of finger food — usually defined as cookies, small baked goods and maybe (if you’re real good boys and girls) cucumber sandwiches! Anne Marie’s idea of finger food is a Fiestaware plate full of toaster pastries (untoasted), but she will be more than happy to give any of her guests the finger if they ask, “Yo, Anne Marie, where are the cucumber sandwiches?”

I repeat: tea event at Chez Gunther, not happening!

Second, we are hardly afternoon tea people. As an example, the article described some of the little niceties (see “doilies” above) the host can offer to display the proper ambiance. Ambiance, now there’s an interesting word. I doubt that I could pronounce the word correctly. When properly used — by someone speaking fluent Main Line — it should be pronounced “um-bee-aunts”. Someone like me raised in the Greater Northeast (specifically Frankford/Upper Kensington) would pronounce it “am-bee-ants.”

To review again: no um-bee-aunts at Chez Gunther. Lots of ants, but no aunts.

Third, if you think your choice of finger food is limited, then you won’t like our choice of teas. No green tea, Earl Grey, or oolong. It’s decaffeinated orange pekoe or nothing, bucko!

Fourth, who the hell in a blue collar household has the time to polish the silver service? More to the point, who the hell in a blue collar household OWNS a silver service? The spoons offered here would be plastic: carefully chosen, saved and accumulated over the course of twenty years of office parties, back when I was employed. As for drinking implements, we use Fiestaware mugs! Not dainty tea cups, but real he-man mugs that can hold a full cup of liquid refreshment! No frou-frou porcelain here!

Oh, and what would we discuss over our biscuits and orange pekoe? The idea that “The Donald” is actually mulling the idea of running for President in 2012? A lengthy discourse on how the poor in this country just don’t get it when it comes to the sacrifices of the rich, who need to hoard every little cent they have for job investment that has yet to materialize? Or the idea that cucumber sandwiches — the kind with the crusts cut off — are getting harder and harder to find? Puh-leeeze!

So, friends, neighbors, and blog readers, do not expect an invitation to high tea from us anytime soon. I know it’s been a tough year for invites, as I expect that many of you were also disappointed at not receiving an invitation to the Prince William-Kate Middleton nuptials this weekend. I didn’t receive one either, but I’m okay with that. Given my pithy dismissal of doilies and notions of am-bee-ants, I doubt that I would fit in anyway.

(Thank you for reading! Happy Birthday to my little brother this week!)


Anonymous Janey said...

"Yo, Anne Marie, where's my fuckin' cucumber sandwich?" :-)

April 28, 2011 at 6:41 AM  

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