The shrieking that precedes a nice calming cup of tea.
A note of panic to add to the chorus of
a myriad of ways to remind us that we are on a schedule.
It’s an entry point for me. It started in childhood, thanks to a dad with a mum who understood that all of life’s problems can be solved with a nice hot cuppa. I’ll just put the kettle on, shall I? was a familiar and soothing refrain. This strange object, this diaphragm which only speaks in exhale. Treated as the means to an end, if that end be the starting point of polite conversation.
Sometimes I don’t even feel like tea, but for lack of direction, I put the kettle on. There are all sorts of little things like that, which give a grounding presence, which carry me along through the day. These rituals which tether us to memory, sanity, community.
Kettles don’t whistle much anymore. Mine has a blue light and makes beep noises, a countertop robot able to discern what is the perfect temperature for black vs green vs oolong. It turns out my kettle has a better grasp on the notion that not all environments are ideal for all the variations which exist than I do.
I’d like to see it try and hula hoop though.