Dear Lipton Tea/Pepsi Partnership/Unilever1,

Recently, my wife asked me to swing by the pet store and pick up some cat food. I did so after work and then stopped at a nearby convienence store to both fill up my gas tank and get something to drink. Desiring something that was not loaded down with sugar or the American favorite “high fructose corn syrup”, I checked out the cold cases and found I had 2 options: plain water or Lipton Unsweetened Iced Tea. Seeing how it was late in the day and I have feeling tired, I picked the caffinated option. Dear god, I wish now I had choosen to stick with water.

The marketing blurb on the side of the bottle claims you brew tea straight from hand-selected tea leaves. If that blurb is accurate then the people you have hand selecting the leaves must be sadistic, tea-hating bastards who desire to inflict maximum pain and suffering on their fellow man. But then if one continues reading the information printed on the bottle’s label; one will find you feel the need to add citric acid (for tartness) and caramel color. That kind of blows away the theory that they’re really hand selecting the tea leaves for their customer’s pleasure. I mean if you were hand selecting good leaves to make tea for the consumer then why do you feel the need to put additives in the tea? After all Ito En is capable of making an entire line of bottled teas containing nothing but water and tea2 without coloring?

I’ll grant that Ito En is brewing green teas, not black. However since you do not appear to produce an unsweated green iced tea; I cannot make a direct comparison. Still this bottle of your tea was easily the worst tea I have ever had3. Hell, even Nestea was better than this! Until you learn how to brew some proper tea, perhaps you should take this crap off the market.


1 If you carefully read all the text on one of their bottles, you’ll see Lipton Tea produces their Iced Teas in cooperation with Pepsi and that they are a Unilever brand.
2 I had to change my argument slightly as after checking a bottle I’d not thrown out yet, I found Ito En adds Vitamin C to their tea.
3 Yeah, I drank it all. I was hot, thirsty and had to drive home yet.

A friend recently posted on her LJ where she thinks she’ll be in the next 15, 20, 25 yeas. Since I rarely if ever think about I’ll be in the next 5 years much less farther out; I decided to take a moment to ponder the same question. Here is what I came up with:


  • Age: 46
  • Employment: Still working and probably shoved into some sort of managerial position. Reading the techie news sites so I can follow the conversations being held by the people I’ve got reporting to me. Wondering if we’re ever going to get those flying cars that they’ve been talking about since I was a child.
  • Vanity: Rather enjoying how my beard & hair are intermixed with grey.
  • Health: Still working to get rid of my cookie gut1 and probably starting to take a variety of medications for arthritis.
  • Hobbies: Still reading plenty of sci-fi, fantasy and mystery novels. Actually, I’m probably reading more of the mystery novels as I either don’t understand what they’re talking about in sci-fi/fantasy these days or I just don’t care anymore. Additionally, I’ll be doing odd jobs around the house renovation/restoring bits & pieces of my castle2. Lastly, I’d like to be working more on my photography skills and possibly learning to build furniture3.


  • Age: 51
  • Employment: Starting to think a lot more seriously about retirement and giving this work crap over to these younger guys with all the energy. Probably shifting my retirement investments to being more conservative. Also, taking advantage of my seniority to get myself sent to all the interesting conventions, training seminars and events. Or at the very least all the ones taking place in interesting places.
  • Vanity: Not so sure I like the all grey hair anymore. Particularly when the little whippersnappers running around call me gramps.
  • Health: Finally got rid of my cookie gut, but getting awfully cranky about all the meds I have to take.
  • Hobbies:


  • Age: 55
  • Employment: Some sort of senior design position, as management jobs might get better pay but they all suck.
  • Vanity: Seriously, I’m 55 and not dead. That’s probably all I need to be vain about at this point.
  • Health: Seriously hoping the current research into cybernetics will be completed in time for me to dump my meatbag for some shiny steel & silicon.
  • Hobbies: Going to public places and pretending to be older and meaner than I actually am to annoy all little whippersnappers running around. 😀

Side note: I started writing this post up a couple of weeks ago when the friend’s post first appeared, but as happens a lot set it aside to work on later. Now that I’m going back to work on it again, I noticed a few differences in how I’m organizing the information. Whereas my friend wrote her post in a more narative form; I’ve got bullet points. I can think of two immediate reasons for this difference.

  1. I’m lazier than my friend
  2. My friend studied English and writing; while I studied business & computers. All my training tells me that nobody really wants to sit there and read the crap I’ve written so I’d better convey my point as quickly & clearly as I can. Her training is all about trying to engage the reader in what she’s saying. I think I like her way better. Ah well.

1 I don’t really care for beer, while I do love munching on freshly, baked home-made cookies. Yummmmmm!
2 “Castle” is used here in the sense that every man’s home is his castle. Rather than in the more literal sense, though if that did somehow happen I think it would be pretty dang rockin’.
3 I like woodworking, but opporunities for doing it while living in an apartment have been extremely limited. Since I’m buying a house, I expect I’ll get to do more of this. If only in home repairs and it might lead to more interesting things.

Well, maybe you aren’t but I am today. It probably has something to do with me waking bolt upright at 1:30 this morning thinking my alarm clock had gone off and it taking me 10-15 minutes for the following realizations to dawn on me:

  1. It’s awfully dark out, even for 6AM.
  2. I didn’t turn my alarm clock off or hit the snooze button, but I don’t hear the radio playing1.
  3. The clock on the microwave says 1:30 AM.
  4. The clock on my computer says 1:35 AM.

*sigh* I suppose I should be thankful I only lost that 10-15 miunutes of sleep but it sure is making the day drag along today.

1 I use a clock/radio for my alarm clock and will shoot anyone dumb enough to switch it to that god-awful beep from the radio.

Dang nabbit! I was not picked for the final 10 and I didn’t win bumpkiss in the game. Ah well, maybe they’ll have another season of the game and I’ll do better then. Since my last entry about TH I received a couple more questions. Additionally as the game is over now, I don’t mind sharing my totally lame and incorrect guesses as to the final location of the treasure1.

@Stephen Y.: As you already found out, the correct answer to last week’s question was the Gutenberg Bible. I have to say I felt really proud of myself with that week’s question as it was the first time since watching the show where I was comfortable enough in my knowledge of the subject that I did not have to research the question before submitting the answer2.

@Jorge: Mind you it’s been many weeks since I did challenge #3, but as I recall it’s a matter of which way the wind is blowing (watch the clouds to determine this) and then of timing. For me, I had to wait for the ship to touch the raised chain and start it’s turn. While it was turning, I aimed for the right-hand side of the screen and fired. That allowed me to hit the ship by basically having them sail right into my canonball.

@Everybody else: Keep in mind that I only started watching TH/playing the online game with week 6. My guesses for the final location of the treasure were:

  1. Washington, D.C.
  2. Washington, D.C.
  3. Library of Congress
  4. Lincoln Memorial

As you were warned, my guess were all lame & inaccurate. I guess it is just as well that I didn’t get picked as one of the final 10 contests as the odds would have been against me winning. *shrug* Oh well, you can’t win ’em all.

1 According to this post on the NBC message boards for Treasure Hunters, the correct final answer was Smithsonian National Museum of American History.
2 It didn’t hurt my ego that I also answered that question before my wife did either (also a first since I started watching the show).