Texans love sweet tea. I don’t.

20 Jun

I drink a hellofalotta tea. If you’ve ever read this blog before, there’s a good chance you already knew that.

But the focus of this isn’t about my liking tea. It’s with people who THINK that they like tea. More specifically, most Texans.

Occasionally when I’m at a restaurant and I order tea, the waitress* sometimes asks, “Sweet or unsweet.”

I’m always very clear to answer with unsweet. Because Sweet Tea isn’t sweet tea. Sweet Tea is a saccharine beast all it’s own. Sweet Tea is “two parts sugar, one part tea.” I don’t even know if it exists outside of the Lone Star State. I’m not even sure if it really has tea in it.

Regardless, it’s gross. It’s like a liquid lollipop (which sounds good, but isn’t). It’s like 4,000,000 calories a glass. And it leaves you with sugar breath, which is nothing like sugar and not much like breath, either.

It’s strange to me that you can even order pre-sweetened tea. Is it because no one wants the shame of adding 17 sugar packets to a single glass? Is it because no one wants to go through the trouble of stirring their own drink (and burning off those luscious calories)?

Do Sweet Tea fans realize that Sweet Tea tastes nothing like tea? I don’t believe they do. And I don’t believe they think that unsweet tea is even worth drinking.

Because whenever I do respond with “unsweet,” I get the Eye. The Eye conveys several things:

  • She’s one of those high-fallutin’ fake sugar users (which I’m not, but drinking an unsweet beverage is a foreign concept to Sweet Tea drinkers).
  • She’s anorexic.
  • She hasn’t taken her insulin shot yet. Her next glass of tea will be normal Sweet Tea.
  • She’s pregnant and trying to be healthy. But Sweet Tea is okay in the third trimester.

The other day, I was in Abilene, Texas. And I ordered tea. The woman* gave me Sweet Tea without even asking to specify, which is insane to me. Why do I have to add an adjective to convey nothing? Tea should mean tea. Tea shouldn’t mean Sweet Tea.


And when I nearly gagged after my first sip, and I returned to the counter and asked for normal tea, I got the Eye. They had no idea what I was talking about.

“Unsweet tea, please.”

The Eye.

“I’m pregnant.**”

“Oooooooooh. Sure. We have some unsweet tea in the back behind the mop bucket.”

I wonder what would have happened had I mentioned I was “vegetarian?”

Texans like their tea to melt on their tongues.

*It’s always a woman in this case, probably because the types of restaurants who re-sweeten their teas feel that men are too good to wait tables.

**I’m not.


3 Responses to “Texans love sweet tea. I don’t.”

  1. DirtyCanadian June 20, 2011 at 1:54 PM #

    I fucking laughed out loud at this post. I know the “eye” far too well but have never gotten it in in California – at least not in LA. Here, everyone is vegetarian, vegan, lactose intolerant, allergic to gluten, an actress, a reality “star,” a model or a really picky copywriter.

    Nothing comes with anything. Toast isn’t buttered. Salad dressing is always on the side. Mixed greens trump fries. Egg whites are always an option. And the tea is ALWAYS unsweetened unless you ask for it to be sweetened. Come visit.

    • Queen of Awesome June 20, 2011 at 1:58 PM #

      I laughed out loud that you laughed out loud.

      I want to visit again. I want to be on vacation forever.

    • A June 22, 2014 at 2:56 PM #

      Wow, you just made a great list of reasons NOT to visit L.A. Thanks!! Also, it’s so funny to me that people like you can become so hostile over something like tea…it’s TEA, people, c’mon!!!

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