Sport is synonymous with beer. The pre-match and post-match pint. The six pack at a tailgate. But I’ve always preferred a cup of tea especially if I’m watching matches at home on television.
There’s something very comforting and relaxing about sipping tea and watching English football. My Saturday morning ritual is to wake up between 6am and 7am, and then head out to pick up a cup of tea, waking me up before the 7:45am kickoff and then watching the game in silence. Or, if my kids wake up early, watching it with them as we eat breakfast together. Nothing goes together better than a cup of good tea and commentary from Ian Darke.
Saturday mornings aren’t the only time I drink tea either. You can usually catch me sipping tea during most matches that I watch from home. I’m not a tea snob, by any means, but I do admit I’m addicted to Chai Tea (a recent ‘find’), as well as any traditional black teas (Lipton, etc). I’m not a big fan of the fruity, exotic flavors. Just a straight cup of tea is fine with me.
In the 28 years that I’ve lived in Florida, I’ve gone through plenty of different stages where I didn’t drink tea, or drank it. Most of my life I’ve had a cup of tea in my hand, but there were times in Florida when they grueling heat made drinking a hot cup of tea not my first choice. For the record, I dislike the taste of iced tea with a passion (sorry Americans, I know most of you enjoy it).
I’m sure that the ritual of drinking tea has a deeper meaning for me. One is a link back to my roots in the United Kingdom. It’s something I grew up drinking as a young child and teenager. Two is that it keeps me tied to my Britishness. But deep meanings aside, I love the way it tastes.
Whether you’ve realized it or not, but coffee is a huge part of American culture. I detested it the bitter taste as a teenager, and both my wife and I still dislike it to this day. But coffee seems to be such an integral part of American society. So just like how I feel like an outsider because I’m a soccer fan, I also feel like an outsider because I drink tea.
What about you? What’s your drink of choice while watching Premier League matches on television? And if you’re a tea drinker, do you relate it to English football, or is it a drink you just enjoy for what it is?