One of the confusing things about tea is that the thing we call “black” tea in the US is actually called “red” tea in China, probably because the color of the tea is in fact reddish-brown. Nothing makes it more obvious that our “black” tea isn’t remotely black until you have a good ripe puerh: earthy, creamy, sweet, and so dark that you could write a letter with it.
Peerless was lovely: creamy, smooth, and ink-dark.
But was it actually peerless? I mean… It was a good pu-erh. But I wouldn’t say that it’s one of a kind, or without equal. It was very nice.
Happy imputed birthday, Katya!
Exactly one year ago, we brought home a little cat from the animal rescue. She was the cat who sat angrily at the back of the carrier the entire “meet and greet” at the rescue. She’d been there for a month or so, with no interest, and the rescue insisted on giving us a host of information on dealing with a fearful cat.
Katya hid in a closet for precisely 36 hours before deciding that we were cool and probably not going to hurt her, and besides, she needed someone to pet her and snuggle her. Thereafter, she felt that the house belonged to her, and so did we.
We decided that her birthday is the day we adopted her, and therefore we have celebrated with freeze-dried salmon, a trip outside on leash, and an incredibly massive and inconvenient cat crown on her head. Happy Birthday, Miss Katya!
We expected a frightened cat who would hide from us for months; we got a voracious cuddle monster who seems to be afraid of almost nothing and wants to conquer the world. A truly peerless cat, by which I mean that there are probably a lot of cats like her, but I love her the most of them all.
Trial by Desire
Speaking of things that are not peerless: one of my law dork things is slipping references to old legal cases into my books.
One of the old contracts cases, Raffles v. Wichelhaus, involves a contract for cotton, to be shipped from Bombay to Liverpool on the ship Peerless. The problem was this: everyone and their dog named their ship Peerless, meaning that there were multiple ships Peerless that went from Bombay to Liverpool, and one party got mad (for economic reasons not necessary to go into here) that their cotton wasn’t on the correct ship Peerless.
This is absolutely not the legal point of the case, but it is particularly funny to me that there’s such an absolute throng of ships named Peerless that they are virtually indistinguishable, and a judge might throw up his hands and say “you know, I can’t tell which ship Peerless you actually meant, truly these are innumerable, nobody could have known.” (Not a direct quote.)
Anyway, in Trial by Desire, Ned arrives on the ship Peerless. Which one? One of many. Because Peerless has way too many peers.
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