There is nothing less sexy than anaemic tea. If you want a surefire way to turn steamy mid afternoon flirting into a situation with all the eroticism of a dead fish, serve someone a cupful of something that looks like it should be used to whitewash a garden fence. You’ll probably never get laid again.
To most tea drinkers, the above has always a given, if unproven rule of social interaction. Like God or Santa, there was just no way of knowing whether it was true - though we all had our suspicions. However, a new study has emerged, apparently confirming all our assumptions about what it means to be a competent tea brewer. As predicted, it’s bad news for anyone who doesn’t think that “milky” is an insult.
According to an extremely unscientific survey by the dating website Plenty of Fish, a pool of 2,500 singletons revealed that, for approximately 20% of participants, the ability to make a proper cuppa was a huge turn on. What’s more, a whopping 69% of respondents revealed that remembering how your partner takes their tea is an important part of any relationship, proving that decent tea is much more than a way to wile away the hours in the office - it’s the cornerstone of a happy future.
Perhaps more worrying for those who fear that their brewing skills may not be up to scratch, the same survey also found that basic errors can spell disaster. Out of the 2,500 surveyed, 37% said that making a weak tea would put them off, 17% would leave a partner for adding too much sugar, and 13% might call it quits if you commit the cardinal sin of over-brewing their tea. Clearly, misappropriating the teapot is a slippery slope.
Teabags, sugar and hot water weren’t the only ingredients under scrutiny from the survey. Approximately 250 participants revealed that they viewed any form of milk substitute as a huge faux pas, while a similar number suggested that anyone adding milk before water deserves to be dumped on the spot. While the first example might strike some as harsh, especially amongst the lactose intolerant community, it’s tough to argue against the latter.
Ending a relationship over a kettle might strike some as being a little petty - a storm in a teacup, if you will. However, only once you’ve experienced the abject horror of an overly milky brew, or had to watch someone absentmindedly playing with a teabag submerged in cold milk can you appreciate the seriousness of the situation. If the study proves nothing else, it’s that we aren’t all mad for caring about our tea.