All around me I see people achieving things. Working towards their goals, succeeding at whatever it is they do. And here I am, a tiny speck of failure.
Sure, I have dreams, I want to be an actor! I want to write meaningful texts! I want to sing in a band! I want to put myself out there and have my work recognised. I want to make an impact on peoples lives.
I can’t though. Nothing I do is good. Not even good enough. If it was someone would have noticed by now right? The only ones who watch my plays are the ones I drag to the theatre, the only ones who read my stuff are the ones I make read it, the only ones who listen to me sing are the ones I force to listen. I am putting myself out there, my voice swallowed by the void. Not even an echo. My efforts are downed by the signal noise, the abundance of mass-produced, mass appeal content. Why me and not those others? Why am I left to wither in the shade while people around me are reaching for the sun and the stars beyond?
Why don’t I have the energy to do all the smaller things I want to do? I want to ‘git gud’ at Dark Souls. I want to write more songs. I want to be useful to the people around me. Yet I give up after 30 minutes. Yet I only write a few words every few weeks. Yet I’m just a depressed cloud in everyones way.
I have so many ideas for projects I want to do. Improve my home and community, create websites and write articles about the things I love, create an independent theatre group, the list goes on and on. Seeds waiting to sprout, seeds left to wait forever. I don’t have the energy.
For those who know me it shouldn’t come as a surprise that I sooner or later would write a blog-post about tea. Gamers Fighting Depression, the community I help moderate is currently running a mod AMA that I am a part of so the question came up and it was as good a reason as any to write this blog post.
My tea journey began in 2013 when I started high school and joined the schools tea club. The club had been branded for being the black sheep of the schools clubs because it had a more “relaxed” atmosphere than the rest of society. Now, the reason I joined was due to this and not the actual tea. I enjoyed the fact that you could lie down and hug in a sofa or make out or even have sex casually without all the stigmas that usually surround these activities. I thought that tea was just a gimmick to legitimise the existence of such a club in a school environment.
However as time passed by and the more tea I drunk I started to appreciate the complexity and variety of the phenomenon that tea was. We drank everything from double-smoked lapsang to delicate silver needles. And so one Monday morning in spring 2014 I walk into the tea club room and see my friend meditating and drinking tea before one going downstairs and taking his first final exam. To this day I do not know the name of the tea, but just writing about it now makes me feel the taste in my mouth. An Oolong with strong mineral and almost nutty flavour. It wasn’t the tea that changed my perception of tea but it is the one symbolising that and the coming two years of drinking tea every day in high school. Since, me and my friend have become best friends and the biggest tea nerds. We get together and drink tea as often as we can and try to pinpoint all the flavours, textures and what have you for every tea we drink.
I have plans or dreams about opening a tea house in the future to serve and sell proper tea since you basically have to go to the capital city or order online if you want good quality, pure tea that you know exactly what kind of tea it is, where it comes from, when it was harvested etc. Otherwise people will just try to sell you “green tea” or “black tea” That’s as informative as “red wine” or “white wine”. Just as a wine nerd wants to know exactly what sort of whine it is, what grapes were used, what mountain they were grown and how it was made, a tea nerd wants to know exactly what tea it is, what tea bush variety was used, what mountain it was grown on, exactly how it was prepared etc.
An other thing I want to do is spread knowledge about the intricate world of tea to the general population. Most peoples experiences of tea are Lipton bags flavoured with god knows what. I’m not quite sure of how I should go about that. Maybe I should start a YouTube channel about it. There are several good English ones but I don’t think there are any in Swedish. However in the end I can’t force people to stop enjoying what they are enjoying. Even though it’s often literally dust from the factory floors. All I can do is to try and spread the joy I receive from drinking high quality tea the traditional, eastern way.