What a very strange week for news it has been. Firstly, the BBC is mourning the loss of the written word which I am not mourning, as I do not perceive it to be lost. The paperless office has never really materialised, and whilst I am sure that people do write fewer letters now that they can text and send messages on facebook and twitter, I think that there are enough of us with fountain pens and nice writing paper to keep the postman in a job. That said, I think that we should all make the effort to write more...I just don't think that this is the time for mourning, it is the time for reviving.
Likewise, I don't see the rise of the ebook as the death of the printed book. I would always prefer a book I can hold in my hand and smell and write my name in, but I see that there are situations where an ereader would come in handy. And if ebooks mean more people are reading, that has to be a good thing, right?
And now, it seems that Debenhams is trying to save the teapot and Alexander McCall Smith is doing his bit to save it too http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2097484/Alexander-McCall-Smith-tackles-decline-teapot-symbol-Englishness.html?ito=feeds-newsxml I have to confess that I find it hard to believe that it can need saving. Really, do people not use them anymore? If I was of a cynical nature, I might suggest that Debenham's just wants to sell more teapots, as it suggests this is a great way to support their campaign...but I am not cynical, so I would endorse their suggestion, but add my own - have fun hunting down a teapot in a charity shop. I think that a vintage floral pot has much more charm than the novelty pots you often see new in the shops.
For my own part, I have resolved to have my welcome-home cup of tea from my little teapot-and-cup set, the kind where the cup and pot slot together to look like a bigger teapot. It is blue with little flowers, and was a birthday gift from my lovely sister a few years ago. We always have pots of tea on a Sunday, but often when I get home I will just make a mug. Not anymore! Instead, out will come my teapot. Ok, only I will know about it, but it is what we do that makes us who we are, and I am definitely a lady who likes her tea out of a pot.
I remember reading an article on The Chap years ago http://www.thechap.net/content/section_manifesto/tateprotest.html where they protested about some modern art by climbing it. In my minds eye I can see similar little acts of rebellion, where we demand teapots in Starbucks, and take our teabreaks at work with pot and cosy, and a tiered cake stand too!
So although I am not convinced that any of us are the ones abandoning the pleasures of the teapot, pen and ink or the printed word, we are definitely the ones who can keep the flame alive. Join me in taking your pleasures, and knowing that as well as enjoying yourself, you are doing the world a favour!