Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Blogging and etc

Good news everyone!
I finally reached 200 followers on Flickr. Yay! I'm kind of surprised because I hardly EVER post there anymore, which I feel bad about so I should start doing that more. Anyway. Today's post comes to you in three parts.

Part one: What have I been doing.

This past weekend I worked at the Women's Show at the convention centre as part of my internship with RfR. There were a surprising number of men there. Basically I stood at our booth and handed out cards and told people who walked by what we do ("Heeyyy ladies! Got any events coming up? We rent out designer dresses at a fraction of the retail cost!") It was a little exhausting and I had to smile a lot but I really like RfR so it was okay. I also helped backstage for the little fashiony runway show we did each day, helping models not fall down stairs and stuff.

I cut my Smoke's shift hours down to one night a week so I could have more time for other things, like school and blogging, and it's been a lot better. Usually I work Friday or Saturday night, but this week I'm working overnight on Thursday. This probably has something to do with my boss firing everyone all the time, so we get a lot of new people in with different schedules and I have to train them and they drop giant things of gravy on the floor.

Part two: Tea education yaayyy

You may know that I have become fully obsessed with tea. So I'm gonna talk about tea for a while.
Today's topic is...
WHITE TEA! Because that's what I'm drinking right now.
So, as you may already know, all types of "true" tea come from the same plant, Camellia sinensis. What a fantastic plant! Basically, the tea is picked, withered, oxidized, and dried. Sometimes people refer to the oxidation process as "fermentation," but that's not really what it is. As far as I know, oxidation is just when something absorbs oxygen and then the oxygen changes shit up. Like when you leave an apple slice out and it gets all gross and brown, that's oxidation too. Okay. Bringing it back to WHITE TEA now.
White tea uses the youngest shoots of this awesome plant, before the buds even open. The buds are covered in this silvery hair, which gives the white tea its name. It's allowed to wither for a short amount of time and the oxidation process just begins. Then it's heated to stop oxidation and dried.
Since it's close to its natural state and is often shaded for awhile during growth to reduce chlorophyll, white tea contains mucho antioxidants and is super good for you! It generally has a delicate, sweet taste and it's super smooth. For ultimate white tea happiness, steep it in well-below-boiling-temperature water. People say different things about whether it should be steeped for a short time or a long time, but I think it depends on the tea and on what you like. Generally I think flavoured white teas (that contain other things besides just tea leaves) should be steeped for a shorter time than straight teas. I have a flavoured white tea called buttercream from my favorite tea place, David's Tea (yay Canadian tea company) and it said to steep it for like 5 minutes or something, so I did, and I haaaated it and thought it was super super gross. So I came back to it a little later and tried steeping for just over a minute, and it was completely different and tasted awesome. So yeah I'm a fan of short steeping times for white teas.
White teas are one of the most expensive kinds of tea, probably because they require more hand processing and can only be picked for a little bit of time out of the year. They're also made in smaller batches I think. Apparently white tea is one of the least popular teas in the west, maybe because of the price? But tea really isn't that expensive. Silver Needle is the highest quality white tea, it's made with only buds (no leaves) and is produced only in the Fujian province in China and even buying this tea comes out to well under a dollar per cup.
Okaay, I really tried to keep this short hahah, sorry I kind of failed, thanks for reading all of it, I think this shit is super interesting. So yeah white tea, really nice, sweet, kind of young and delicate tea. If tea was music I think white tea would be Kimya Dawson or maybe like, Regina Spektor or something.

Part three: Zombies

I'm super into the graphic novel series "The Walking Dead" right now.  I was always kind of freaked out by zombies and I don't really like zombie movies or anything, so I don't know why I started reading it. But it's awesome. I think they started making a tv series out of it, but I heard it wasn't very good. The books are about the characters a lot more than the zombies, obviously. It's more of a "what people would do in a dangerous, post apocalyptic world" story than a "totally laying waste to hoardes of zombies" story, although there are moments of that too. There are a lot of books and he's still writing more, I'm up to #6 now. In the intro to the first one he writes about how he's fascinated with zombies because of what they say about our place in society, and our society's place in the world, and how they're basically our own death personified which is generally what we fear the most. But they're also slow and stupid, and easily taken down by just about anybody whether they're an awesome fighter or a normal person and it's nice in a way to think about being superior to death. Anyway it made me think about zombies differently. The art is good too. So yeah check it out because it's awesome.

Okay, that is all, thanks for reading. Bye!


mom said...

I want the next lesson to be on herbal teas, or tisanes. They're my favourite.
Nice pictures. Are they new?
I think Donna and Tony are watching that Walking Dead series.
Love you!

Claire said...

oh my god hipster overload.

I'm sorry. but forreal brah.

However, I very much did enjoy the lesson on tea. I had similar results on steeping white tea too long. I went to this pompous ass tea house in boulder, where this dbag with a pinline beard told me to steep it for five minutes at a rolling boil. TOOL. It tasted horrible!

As for the walking dead, kayla watches that show. I have to leave the house when it's on because I can't even stand to be in the same house due to all the horribly grotesque noises and blood curdling screams.

Erin said...

It's hipster?! Are tea and zombies hipster things?? DAMN YOU HIPSTERS. WHATEVER. I'm not letting them steal my favorite topics ANY MORE! But claire i'm counting on you to let me know if i start to take on any hipster pretentiousness.

Claire said...

Well you were hipster before the hipster movement starting gaining all those tools that are all "I liked Saw IV: the book better" So I think you should be safe.

This post is only hipster because you're talking about the graphic novel of a popular tv show (yes I know it existed first) and the science of tea. I mean, come on.

but have no fear the minute I detect any hipster pretentiousness I will slap a ho.

oma said...

that was an awesome blog Erin. I learned something new about tea. Never too old to learn, I guess.
love the picture of " birds on a wire" Reminds me of Leonard Cohen.
I don't know much about zombies. Know a few but try to avoid them.
love you.

helmut said...

totally seen that row of houses before.
Just googled hipster and all the variations of it. Wow. so confusing! I'm glad to be old and out of touch. I could never keep up.

I think you'll be getting lots of tea for christmas!
Stay warm...the snow is coming!!!
Auntie Carolyn XOXO