We read every day what tea can do for us:  strengthen bones and teeth;  increase alertness and mental acuity;  boost our immune systems; protect our cells against the ravages of aging – and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.  This blog has no fewer than 370 posts about health and wellness!  Alas, there is one minor flaw:

Tea cannot make a teenager understand what an argument is. 

Tea won’t even help a teenager understand what an argument is not.  This phenomena begins at an early age.  Here is an example of how this goes in a typical household-occupied-by-teen on Saturday afternoon:


“Mom, the guys and I are going to shoot some hoops and then go out for burgers.”

“Who is going to be there?”

“Shen Nung, Robert, and George.”

“Don’t think I don’t know that Robert is still on probation for stealing all those tea plants from China.”

“That was ages ago, Mom!  He’s served his time.”

“I don’t want you hanging out with that George, either.”

“Mom, it’s not George the Second- “

“I don’t want you hanging out with guys who get into trouble.”

“Shen’s a rock, Mom!  You know he’s got that national award in alchemy – “

“I’m not sure I like the stories that he was testing all those substances!”

“Yeah, well, he never failed a drug test!  A full ride to University of Tea.  He’s on his way to legend, yo.”

“Don’t argue with me.YO!”

“I’m not arguing!”

12970648924_b708a22694No matter how much tea parents drink, teenagers will never understand the difference between a written and verbal argument, and whenever teens want to renegotiate a long-standing household rule or family value, it isn’t an argument in their eyes because the parent is wrong.   To a teen, all arguments are to be summed up in three words:  winning or losing.  Hide the car keys and make yourself a nice, tall iced tea cocktail.

This is the first of a very short series on what tea cannot do.  Part 2: The Tea Party, will publish in mid-April.

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