Chai Tea, and other things.

27 Sep

I’m boiling water downstairs for chai tea. One of the girls living in a house with me senior year in college grew up in Africa, and often she’d make chai tea. It’s popular there, like coffee is here. One day she offered me some. She poured a half glass, in case I didn’t like it. I sipped, and the hot drink ran down my throat and warmed my stomach. Then the flavor set in. It was delicious. Once you taste something real, there’s no returning to fake.

She had actual chai tea mix from Kenya, which she stocked up on when visiting her parents there. Mine isn’t from Kenya; it’s from the nearest grocery store, and it’s not nearly as good. But it’s a hot drink at night that is decaf, and it’s got an exoticy (made-up word) flavor, so I like it.

I just finished editing my little brother’s paper for his first college writing class. He brings me The New York Times and USA Today in exchange. We barter. You wouldn’t believe what you can get free at The University at Buffalo. Swipe your student ID card, and you can get free stellar newspapers.  At orientation, they were giving out the book “Three Cups of Tea” like water. So anyways, he brings me free papers, and I help him with his homework.

I’m reading “Seabiscuit” right now. It’s about thoroughbred horse racing. The movie never stuck with me – in fact it was awful – but as usual, the book is eons better. I feel that I would make a terrible book critique because I usually like what I read. In fact, I usually love it. I become enthralled by it. I don’t think I could ever adopt a scathing attitude toward a book or play. I’m too nice. Anyone who has the fortitude to get themselves published in book form, I applaud. Or maybe it’s just that I always choose good books. Maybe if I got my hands on something really bad, meanness would follow.

But luckily I don’t have to worry about it because no one’s asking my opinion. Before Seabiscuit, I finished “A Walk in the Woods” by Bill Bryson. It’s about his sojourn along the Appalachian Trail. It’s pretty funny. OK, enough with wimpy words. It’s hilarious. I’m not really the laugh-out-loud while reading a book type, but I became one. I’ll warn you, though: he uses a lot of adverbs. Stephen King wouldn’t like him. He hates adverbs with a passion. Most writers, I think, shouldn’t use them. They just get in the way, like clutter. But if your brilliant like Bryson, someone whose language is precision perfect, use them, use them freely. He was a copy editor at a newspaper for something like 20 years before writing his first book. In other words, he intimately knows his English language.

The water is now boiling, so I’d better go.


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