Thursday, June 09, 2005

Blog Lag and Retro Tea.

Blogs are for narcissists--this we know. Beneath all the quirky, opinionated observations and comments lies the obsessive heart of a raging egotist, checking for comments. (I won't say anything about how frequently I check, because what if I check more frequently than you do, and that makes me even more of an narcissist? Yikes.)

Just had to get that out of the way.

This afternoon, I met a friend for tea at the Beehive Tearoom downtown. This place aims squarely for quaint and hits the bullseye: little round tables, bent cane chairs, furniture that looks like your grandma's, walls painted the colors they painted walls in the forties, old forties-style jazz, lace curtains. And they've nailed the tea part, as well--you can have almost any kind of tea you can imagine (I noted that they've added the trendy bubble teas to their repertoire since the last time I was there). Also, dainty, very lady-like food, served in lady-like portions. The tearoom doubles as a wedding library, which means there's a wall o' books and mags about weddings that you could use, presumably, to get fantastic and very over-priced ideas about planning your wedding.

The proprietor also has a retro look. She's a young woman, but she wears vintage clothing, retro eyeware, and extremely buttoned-down hairdos.

I admit, I find this place charming. The clientele most days I've been there is women--young, middle-aged, old. I saw, for instance, another friend of mine there with her great aunt and other older female relations.

I suppose this is in contrast to the steam-spewing, noisy, burnt-smelling hustle of coffee houses. It's genteel, feminine, refined . . . Anyhow, among other things, it made me wonder what it is about retro. What, exactly, is the appeal of the throwback, the reconstituted, the slightly finicky evocation of the past?

2 comments:

Sleepy E said...

Is a teahouse more feminine than a coffee shop somehow? Or just this one?

lis said...

I love the tea room--a great atmosophere for thinking, grading, writing. I always drink too much tea, though, when I go.

The owner is a friend (well, in the ex-boyfriend's brother's girlfriend kind of way); she's a lovely person who used to be a librarian--which explains much, I think, about the ambience of the place.

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