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Tea Drinkers in Popular Culture


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Apr 16, 2012, 9:03pm Top

Hello Everyone!

Please share who your favorite tea drinker is, be it from a movie, TV show ect.

Mine would be Captain Jean Luc Picard.
I am a die hard Star Trek fan and just adore his love for Earl Grey tea.

"Tea, Earl Grey, hot." - Picard, USS Enterprise

Apr 16, 2012, 9:13pm Top

Hello little_hyuts!

What a great idea!

My favourite is probably Giles from Buffy the Vampire Slayer :

"Did your life flash before your eyes? Cup of tea, cup of tea, almost got shagged, cup of tea?"- Spike, Vampire to Rupert Giles, Watcher

Apr 17, 2012, 2:59am Top

I saw the subject line, and instantly thought "Tea. Earl Grey. Hot", so I'm obviously on your wavelength. And I wish I'd remembered that Spike quote!

Completely stumped in trying to think of another tea drinker...

Apr 17, 2012, 6:13am Top

Arthur Dent in the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is forever in quest of the perfect cup of tea. Zaphod once suggests that you could take out Arthur's brain and replace it with a tape recording that says "What?!", "I don't understand", and "Where's the tea?" and you wouldn't be able to tell the difference. (To which Arthur responds, "What?!")

Apr 17, 2012, 2:00pm Top

"Christopher Robin was home by this time, because it was the afternoon, and he was so glad to see them that they stayed there until very nearly tea-time, and then they had a Very Nearly tea, which is one you forget about afterwards, and hurried on to Pooh Corner, so as to see Eeyore before it was too late to have a Proper Tea with Owl." -- A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner

Apr 17, 2012, 2:11pm Top

C.S. Lewis: “You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.”

Apr 17, 2012, 2:14pm Top

'Five o'clock tea! Ever to thee faithful I'll be, five o'clock tea!"--Sylvie, or Bruno, or both

Sylvie and Bruno by Lewis Carroll

Of course there's that OTHER famous tea party in Carroll, but I'm not sure they ever got around to drinking any.

Apr 17, 2012, 2:16pm Top

Hercule Poirot was always drinking his tisanes.

Apr 17, 2012, 4:00pm Top

No additions come to mind at the moment, but these are all making me smile!

Edited: Apr 17, 2012, 8:44pm Top

wookiebender : i love the name!

same wavelength indeed :
your library is great too!

these are great additions guys.
love hitchhikers guide, that's a good one!

Edited: Apr 19, 2012, 12:55pm Top

>4 rabbitprincess:
At one point, Arthur is trying to get a cup of tea from a computerized drink dispenser. The narrator explains that these universally available devices are able to detect what the user wants and then they always, inexplicably, dispense something that
"tastes almost, but not exactly, totally unlike tea" (quoting the BBC radio production from memory)

Apr 19, 2012, 1:29pm Top

Lovely topic!

I have a greeting card on my shelf which claims Thomas Jefferson is the author of

“Thank God for tea! What would the world do without tea! How did it exist? I am glad I was not born before tea.”

but googling it, I found Sydney Smith, A Memoir of the Reverend Sydney Smith

Apr 19, 2012, 6:26pm Top

>#2- I just watched that episode Funny!That would be my favorite too!

Edited: Apr 20, 2012, 11:55am Top

Cloudy days, we stay inside together
The weather's wet
The tea is from Tibet.
I play the scales
And you protect the whales
Make love to me
Listen to Satie
- from "Living on the Inside", lyrics/music by Michael Franks


(edited to add link)

Apr 20, 2012, 11:53am Top

Patrick Jane from the TV show The Mentalist is always drinking tea - it's one way of disarming the people he's questioning.

Apr 23, 2012, 12:50pm Top

If we go along with the idea that Wikipedia is 'popular culture', then


offers a light-hearted view.

Apr 23, 2012, 12:59pm Top

Now from the Invisible Opera Company of Tibet...

Have a cup of tea, have another one, have a cup of tea
Have a cup of tea, have another one, have a cup of tea
Have a cup of tea, have another one, have a cup of tea...

High in the sky, what do you see?
Come down to Earth, a cup of tea
Flying saucer, flying teacup
From outer space, Flying Teapot

-- lyrics from Flying Teapot by Gong

Apr 23, 2012, 1:00pm Top

Mma Ramotswe and Mma Makutsi drink a lot of tea in the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency and sequels. Mma Ramotswe likes her bush tea, but Mma Makutsi drinks the real thing :)

Apr 23, 2012, 1:05pm Top

I remember this 'popular culture' song from my 1950s childhood - on the 'wireless':

(Herbert / Sullivan)

I like a nice cup of tea in the morning
For to start the day you see
And at half-past eleven
Well my idea of Heaven
Is a nice cup of tea
I like a nice cup of tea with my dinner
And a nice cup of tea with my tea
And when it's time for bed
There's a lot to be said
For a nice cup of tea


Perhaps what makes this popular in England, is that it refers to 'dinner' and 'tea'. Things have changed, but back in those days, in England, 'dinner' was the mid-day meal now known as 'lunch', and 'tea' was the evening meal now known as 'dinner'. Only the upper classes used the nomenclature now common to all. Vital information for time-travellers!

There's another useful link at:


This includes a song track, the full words of the song, and even a picture of a 'wireless'!!

Apr 23, 2012, 2:02pm Top

>19 CliffordDorset:
When I was growing up (US), dinner was the main meal of the day (whether mid-day or evening), but was usually the noon meal on the farms where my grandparents all grew up. So, dinner might also be called 'lunch' if the mid-day meal or 'supper' if the evening meal. Being in the US, of course, there was no meal called 'tea'.


Apr 24, 2012, 8:58am Top


Ahh but you are a southerner (by choice if not birth). In the Midlands and in the North we, or at least quite a few of us, still have tea as our man evening meal and dinner in our lunch-hour at work.

Apr 24, 2012, 1:54pm Top

Although Bertie Wooster spent a lot of his time waiting around for lunch, the cocktail hour and dinner, he looked forward to his restorative morning cup of tea.

"He Jeeves put the good old cup of tea softly on the table by my bed, and I took a refreshing sip. Just right, as usual. Not too hot, not too sweet, not too weak . . . not too much milk, and not a drop spilled in the saucer . . . He always floats in with the cup exactly two minutes after I come to life."

The Inimitable Jeeves by P.G. Wodehouse

Apr 26, 2012, 8:31am Top

#22 ... thinking I need to add Jeeves to my reading wish list now :) (Loved the TV series with Hugh Laurie & Stephen Fry.)

Edited: Apr 26, 2012, 1:34pm Top

I'm a fan of the series too. The books are laugh-out-loud funny too. P.S. Be careful if you read in public. It could be embarrassing!

Apr 28, 2012, 12:31pm Top

24: Agreed! Wodehouse is definitely not bus-book material for me :P

May 9, 2012, 2:48pm Top

"There isn't enough chamomile tea in the world to quell the rage in my heart."
Dr. Sheldon Cooper, The Big Bang Theory

May 10, 2012, 5:36am Top

#26 - I love Sheldon's conviction that if someone's upset they have to be given a 'hot beverage'.

"No thanks."
"It isn't optional!"

May 10, 2012, 8:43am Top

And Sheldon is always right. He says so.

(Additional observation: You know you are a severe tea geek when you pause the DVD to press your face into the screen to decipher the tea bag tag or the tea stash in somebody's kitchen.)

May 10, 2012, 9:34am Top

28: I do that too!

Of course, in Sheldon's case you don't know if you'll be getting tea or age-old chicken boullion.

May 10, 2012, 1:26pm Top

>28 gmathis:
I do that and I do the same thing to try to read the spines of the books on the shelves behind them. If someone is sitting in a particularly interesting library, I'm likely to miss most of the dialogue due to distraction.


May 11, 2012, 5:42am Top

#30 - Oh yes. Here in the UK, news programmes like interviewing 'experts' and such people against bookshelves (presumably their own) and I'm always finding my attention being distracted.

Edited: May 11, 2012, 5:44am Top

#31 - There you are - it's a tea thread and I've been distracted off-topic again. Damn bookshelves!

May 11, 2012, 11:40am Top

In the Mr. Putter and Tabby books by Cynthia Rylant, they often have tea at some point in the book. I always have to flip through them when we get a new Putter/Tabby book at the library to see if they indeed have tea. I'm always disappointed when it's omitted from a book.

May 11, 2012, 3:50pm Top

"There is an early train to town, Watson, but I think we shall just have time for a cup of tea at the Chequers before we catch it."


"The table was all laid, and just as I was about to ring Mrs. Hudson entered with the tea and coffee. A few minutes later she brought in three covers, and we all drew up to the table, Holmes ravenous, I curious, and Phelps in the gloomiest state of depression."


"I'll tell you what I did first, and how I came to do it afterwards," said he. "After leaving you at the station I went for a charming walk through some admirable Surrey scenery to a pretty little village called Ripley, where I had my tea at an inn and took the precaution of filling my flask and of putting a paper of sandwiches in my pocket.

May 12, 2012, 1:41am Top

"Lord Maccon scrubbed his face with his hand, reached desperately for a nearbye teapot, and drained it through the spout.

Miss Tarabotti looked away from the horrible sight....She fluttered one hand at her throat. 'Please Lord Maccon, use one of the cups. My delicate sensibilities.'"

Soulless by Gail Carriger

May 12, 2012, 8:48am Top

>30 Osbaldistone:–32: Yes, I do that too. It's easier with the photos that accompany print interviews than on TV. Of course the bigger books are easier to recognize, so dictionaries tend to be most identifiable. Do you think the more savvy/frequent interviewees have a bay of shelves with their most impressive books gathered together ready to be photographed in front of?

"And so it go on and even me, molesworth the goriller of 3B, am not unmoved by the sentiments of the season. Helping myself to 7 spoonfulls of sugar in my tea at brekfast i look pensive."

Back in the Jug Agane by Geoffrey Willans and Ronald Searle

May 12, 2012, 10:47am Top

From the Doctor Who serial "The Talons of Weng-Chiang" (quoting from memory; we watched it last night and I don't have a script):

Professor Litefoot: "I ask you, 'One lump or two, Miss Leela?' To which you respond, 'One lump will suffice, thank you.'"
Leela: "Supposing I want two?"
Professor Litefoot: "Oh no, one lump for ladies."
Leela: "Then why do you ask?"

Leela: "Professor Litefoot has just been explaining tea to me, Doctor. It's very complicated."
The Fourth Doctor: "It's not complicated at all, Leela. The most important thing about tea is warming the pot."

May 12, 2012, 11:05am Top

>37 rabbitprincess:: Ah, well, that ties in (since Douglas Adams was at one time a Doctor Who script editor) with this excerpt from Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency, featuring Professor Chronotis, whom Adams had recycled from his own Who script 'Shada'...

“Earl Grey or Lapsang Souchong?” called out Reg. “Or Darjeeling? Or PG Tips? It’s all tea bags anyway, I’m afraid. And none of them very fresh.”
“Darjeeling will do fine,” replied Richard, stooping to pick up the piece of paper.
“Milk?” called Reg.
“Er, please.”
“One lump or two?”
“One, please.”
Richard slipped the paper back into the book, noticing as he did so that it had a hurriedly scribbled note on it. The note said, oddly enough, “Regard this simple silver salt cellar. Regard this simple hat.”
“Er, what?” said Richard, startled. He put the book hurriedly back on the pile.
“Just a tiny joke of mine,” said Reg cheerily, “to see if people are listening.”

May 12, 2012, 10:46pm Top

If you have kids, then you may know that Tasha from "The Backyardigans" leads her friends on a quest for the perfect cup of tea...one of my favorite episodes, and one of the few not available on Netflix or iTunes.

May 13, 2012, 8:40am Top

#39, I'm a little behind on kid culture ... will have to check that out!

May 14, 2012, 9:22am Top

Don't forget Brief Encounter: a love affair that begins and ends in a station tea room.

May 17, 2012, 11:49am Top

May 18, 2012, 4:54am Top

"That's a good, stout-looking pot. Has it got any more in it?"
"Yes, indeed," said Miss Climpson, eagerly. "My dear father used to say I was a great hand at getting the utmost out of a teapot. The secret is to fill up as you go and never empty the pot completely."

"Take those dreadful things away, Vanya. They make me sick. Give us some tea, tea, tea!"
"Tea!" echoed the cadaverous man, "They want tea!"

"I wish nobody had ever invented tea. Ruins your nerves and spoils your appetite for dinner."
"Beastly sloppy stuff," agreed the Hon. Freddy.

"But crime's not very decorative, is it? I don't care about collecting hangmen's ropes and murderers' overcoats. What are you to do with 'em? Is the tea all right? I ought to have asked you to pour out, but it always seems to me rather unfair to invite a person and then make her do all the work. What do you do when you're not working, by the way? Do you keep a secret passion for anything?"

'On the previous day, she had marked down one principal tea-shop, two rising and competitive tea-shops, one slightly passé and declining tea-shop, a Lyons, and four obscure and, on the whole, negligible tea-shops which combined the service of refreshments with a trade in sweets.'

"How vexatious!" said Miss Climpson, as the vehicle disappeared. "I must have missed her somewhere. Or perhaps she was having tea in a private house. Well, I'm afraid this is a blank day. And I do feel so full of tea!"

"How nice of you. I'll have scones and butter, please, and a pot of tea."

"We'll stop now and make some tea."

All from Strong Poison by Dorothy L. Sayers.

May 23, 2012, 9:11pm Top

I immediately thought of the "Tea, Early Grey, hot" from Star Trek.

When I saw the movie with some friends, they turned to look at me just as that line was spoken. Wonder why...

And, naturally, Arthur Dent's mention of something "not quite entirely unlike tea."

May 24, 2012, 7:44am Top

'He could not in conscience - not even George's conscience - object, though did suggest that, perhaps, it would be better for him to stop in the boat, and get tea ready, while Harris and I towed, because getting tea was such a worrying work, and Harris and I looked tired.'

'That is the only way to get a kettle to boil up the river. If it sees that you are waiting for it and are anxious, it will never even sing. You have to go away and begin your meal, as if you were not going to have any tea at all. You must not even look round at it. Then you will soon hear it sputtering away, mad to be made into tea.'

'It is very strange, this domination of our intellect by our digestive organs. We cannot work, we cannot think, unless our stomach wills so. It dictates to us our emotions, our passions. After eggs and bacon, it says, "Work!" After beefsteak and porter, it says, "Sleep!" After a cup of tea (two spoonfuls for each cup, and don't let it stand more than three minutes) it says to the brain, "Now, rise, and show your strength. Be eloquent, and deep, and tender; see, with a clear eye, into Nature and into life; spread your white wings of quivering thought, and soar, a god-like spirit, over the whirling world beneath you, up through long lanes of flaming stars to the gates of eternity!"'

'Montmorency had a fight with the kettle during tea-time, and came off a poor second.'

All from Three Men in a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog) by Jerome K. Jerome.

May 24, 2012, 8:13am Top

#44 - I can never understand the obsession with Earl Grey. It seems to have acquired this hefty status in popular culture, even though only a minority of people actually drink the disgusting stuff, and it seems much more popular among fictional characters than in real life.

I'd be fascinated to know whether script-writers and journalists buck the trend and it's actually a very popular drink among them - or are they just using it as a short-hand term for 'posh tea'?

And Picard was French - shouldn't he have been drinking coffee? Or even the odd glass of wine - didn't his brother or father have a vineyard?

May 25, 2012, 12:27pm Top

>46 alaudacorax:
I think they just like the sound, and they don't have to go look up names of teas, as that one comes easily to mind, even for non-tea drinkers.


May 25, 2012, 12:29pm Top

>45 alaudacorax: (re: Two Men in a Boat)
"After a cup of tea ... it says to the brain, "Now, rise, and show your strength. Be eloquent, and deep, and tender; see, with a clear eye, into Nature and into life; spread your white wings of quivering thought, and soar, a god-like spirit, over the whirling world beneath you, up through long lanes of flaming stars to the gates of eternity!"

Yeah, that's exactly how it speaks to me! But I typically manage to fight it off and continue reading or napping (and pouring another cup).


May 26, 2012, 4:55am Top

#45, #46 - Um ... I've just realised that I posted in the wrong thread. I'd meant to stick them in 'Quoteations'. Oh well ... i don't suppose anyone minds - tea-drinkers are very tolerant.

May 26, 2012, 12:31pm Top

>46 alaudacorax: And Picard was French - shouldn't he have been drinking coffee? Or even the odd glass of wine - didn't his brother or father have a vineyard?

Well, obviously wine would be out of the question, since it quickly turns to vinegar in artificial gravity fields.


May 27, 2012, 5:11am Top

#50 - Good Lord! That's disastrous! Well, if we ever develop practical, interstellar travel in my lifetime, I want no part of it.

Um - how does the wine know the gravity field is artificial?

Edited: May 27, 2012, 11:53am Top

Apologies for continuing to stray OT...

46, 47 I agree about Earl Grey. I don't like the taste, but it does "sound" fancy and quite English, especially to Americans like me, who primarily use tea bags. Inconceivable! I wonder if the fact that is replicator tea makes a significant difference in taste.

Re wine in Federation space: Drinking on duty is frowned upon unless it is synthehol, which has the taste (allegedly) but not the effect of alcohol. In the original series, Romulan Ale and Saurian Brandy were popular when off-duty. I would go on, but this isn't a Trek thread. (If it were, dozens would have beaten me here with even more OT information.)

On topic:

One of my favorite teatime scenes is in Mary Poppins. It even occurs in the air and has a fun song as well!

May 27, 2012, 5:10pm Top

>51 alaudacorax: how does the wine know the gravity field is artificial?

The same way my thermos knows whether I want it kept hot or cold.

>52 littleshell: has the taste (allegedly) but not the effect of alcohol.

That's that artificial gravity again.

May 27, 2012, 10:22pm Top

I simply adore Earl Grey. It is what I drink most often.

Edited: Jun 9, 2012, 8:57pm Top

Atticus O'Sullivan, the last living druid in The Iron Druid Chronicles, by Kevin Hearne, owns a New Age book and herb shop. He has developed a brew he serves to elderly patrons called Elastici-tea. And one that he has used himself called Longevi-tea. He also gives the Longevi-tea to his wolfhound, Oberon, who is his constant companion.

Sorry, I just checked the book, and it's called Mobili-tea.

May 29, 2012, 1:09pm Top

>55 2wonderY:
I could use a little more elastici-tea myself.


May 30, 2012, 2:32am Top

I came across this book recently: Tea with Jane Austen by Kim Wilson. I thought the blurb sounded enticing...

"Who would not want to sit down with Jane Austen and join her in a cup of tea? Here for the first time is a book that shares the secrets of one of her favorite rituals.

Tea figures prominently in Jane Austen's life and work. At the center of almost every social situation in her novels one finds tea. In Emma, does Miss Bates drink coffee? Of course not: 'No coffee, I thank you, for me-never take coffee.-A little tea if you please.' In Pride and Prejudice, what is one of the supreme honors Mr. Collins can envision Lady Catherine bestowing on Elizabeth Bennet and her friends? Why, drinking tea with her, naturally.

Tea with Jane Austen begins with tea drinking in the morning and ends with tea in the evening, at balls and other gatherings. Each chapter includes a description of how tea was taken at a particular place or time of day, along with history, recipes, excerpts from Austen's novels and letters and illustrations from the time."

It's on my wishlist!

May 30, 2012, 9:09am Top

>57 Marlie5:
I read that book, it was excellent reading for a tea lover/Jane Austen fan. I think it's the book that mentioned she might have shopped at the Twinings shop on the Strand. That made me squeal, as I've been there.

Jun 16, 2012, 8:55pm Top

Tea was a beverage which could be served hot or cold. It was made from plant leaves steeped in hot water. If served cold, the steeped water was then generally cooled down and poured over ice. Countless variations of tea were known on many planets.

Captain Jonathan Archer and Commander Tucker drank iced tea, garnished with lemon, during almost every meal they shared in the captain's dining room. Ambassador V'Lar implied that the kind of iced tea he drank was flavored with passion fruit, and further suggested that it was "an appropriate ingredient for him." (ENT: "Fallen Hero") Commander T'Pol was known to favor hot chamomile tea, although she occasionally drank mint tea as well. (ENT: "Fusion", "E²") Unlike her shipmates, however, T'Pol rarely drank tea to accompany a meal during her early years aboard Enterprise. By 2155, though, she had begun to incorporate iced tea into her meals with Archer. (ENT: "Babel One")

Captain Jean-Luc Picard was known for his fondness of Earl Grey tea, often ordering it from a replicator in his ready room with the phrase, "Tea, Earl Grey, hot." (Star Trek: The Next Generation) In an alternate timeline, Picard asked for Earl Grey tea from Data's maid using his usual phrase out of custom, to the amusment of Jessel. (TNG: "All Good Things...")

Captain Hikaru Sulu enjoyed a cup of hot tea in the mornings. (Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country; VOY: "Flashback")

The Klingons included tea in the Klingon tea ceremony, although it was deadly to Humans and can be at least toxic to Klingons. (TNG: "Up The Long Ladder")

Before the attack by the Husnock warship, wild tea used to grow everywhere on Delta Rana IV. Rishon Uxbridge prepared tea from Rana for the away team of the USS Enterprise-D. (TNG: "The Survivors")

In 2369 Captain Picard and Geordi La Forge had some tea while "frozen in time." (TNG: "Timescape")

In an alternate timeline Jake Sisko offered Melanie a tea in his house in Louisiana. She went through the rain to visit him, and he suggested she could use a warm drink. (DS9: "The Visitor")

Neelix stocked several types of tea aboard the USS Voyager, including Terran and more exotic varieties. He himself favored herbal tea. (VOY: "Unforgettable")

In addition to bread and water, Neelix also brought Dala some tea which she used to burn him as part of her escape plan. (VOY: "Live Fast and Prosper

Jul 23, 2012, 1:37pm Top

Back when ST:TNG was on, my roommate and I used to say "tea, Earl grey, hot" every time we put water in the microwave to heat it up. (Yes, I know microwaved water is terrible, but we didn't have a proper teapot.)

But the first thing I thought of was the Doctor. Love the "Talons..." quote above!

Edited: Jul 25, 2012, 7:30pm Top

Another Dr. Who quotation, from The Awakening (Tom Baker years):

Turlough: “I quite miss that brown liquid they drink here.”

Will Chandler: “Ale?”

Turlough: “No. Tea.”

Will Chandler: “What be tea?”

The Doctor: “Oh, a noxious infusion of oriental leaves containing a high percentage of toxic acid.”

Will Chandler: “Sounds an evil brew, don’t it?”

The Doctor: “True. Personally, I rather like it.”

Jul 25, 2012, 7:38pm Top

I wish I could click "like" on message 61 :)

A quote from The Pirates! In an Adventure with Whaling, by Gideon Defoe:

"Tea, Captain," said the pirate in green.
"Lovely," said the Pirate Captain. "Grog is all well and good, but it doesn't really beat a nice cup of tea."

Jul 25, 2012, 8:04pm Top

Yours is good too!

Jul 29, 2012, 10:37pm Top

Uncle Iroh from Avatar: The Last Airbender.  Not to be confused with Shyamalan's live-action jab at the series, or Cameron's usurpation of the title.

I still need to see The Pirates!

Group: Tea!

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