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02 July 2006 @ 11:03 am
Seems like quite a few people have become active on this forum in the past few months. Many of you I know and exchange with off the forum, but others I know very little about. I find that when I am discussing tea, it helps me to know a little about the other participants. Especially the extent of your experience with tea, background, other interests, etc. I'll start with a quick bio of myself.

Bearsx3, if this thread is successful, could you create a frontpage link to it for easy access?
davelcorp on July 2nd, 2006 06:19 pm (UTC)
I am 35yrs old, male, attending graduate school to study traditional chinese medicine, and live in San Francisco with my wife and 2yr old son.

I have been drinking tea for about 4yrs off an on. My initial introduction was to oolongs and cooked puer. A little less than two years ago I became obsessed with puer and much of my time, money and energy goes into drinking and collecting sheng.

I do not consider myself an expert of any sort. Most of my knowledge is from internet forums and picking the brains of the more experienced people I meet on the internet. Mike Petro's pu-erh.net has been particularly helpful and was the first inspiration to kick off my sheng obsession.

Other interests include, chinese medicine, aikido, parenting, organic farming and artisan foods. If you would like to discuss any of these topics off-list with me, I can be contacted at:
davelcorp at mac dot com

psychopuncture on July 2nd, 2006 06:45 pm (UTC)
Thanks, David! Great idea!

(And thanks for your bio-post--nice template, which I will now use...)

Me: 40 year old male, clinical psychologist and graduate student of traditional Chinese medicine (yes, davelcorp is a classmate). I've lived in the SF Bay area since 1992, but grew up in both Hawaii and New York (long story...).

I was a tea-with-milk drinker for a number of years until a few years ago when a former girlfriend suggested I check out a small local tea shop she'd run across. I went and had my first exposure to gongfu style tea, and to high-quality oolongs and shou puers. Sheng puer has been a more recent area of exploration.

I drink both sheng and shou puer as well as a variety of oolongs. In my cup, at the moment: Da Hong Pao--perfect for a foggy Bay Area summer day. I consider myself a tea-geek: fanatical and obsessed, but not necessarily knowledgable.

My non-tea areas of geekdom: anything cinematic, Chinese medicine, Jungian psychology, taiji quan and qigong.

I can be reached off-line at psychopuncture at earthlink dot net.
psychopuncture on July 2nd, 2006 07:39 pm (UTC)
Oops, I forgot to sign my post, above.

- Mike
Freiherr Albrecht von Schmendrick-Bergschrundalagbon on July 2nd, 2006 08:06 pm (UTC)
I don't participate here often, but this is who I am
I'm a 27-year-old male wastewater treatment plant operator in the beautiful Lehigh Valley of Pennsyltucky. Unfortunately I only have direct experience of cooked puerh (which is easily available at a local Asian grocer; I'm drinking some right now,) but I'm getting an excellent education here for which I thank you all. My major areas of tea knowledge are green and oolong; a couple of the local Asian grocers (Allentown, of all places, has five!) do get in some decent examples of both every so often. I'm no real expert but I've long since left the days of Lipton... Among my other interests are music (folk, progrock, psychedelia, metal, and whatnot; I play the guitar and bass plus a vast panoply of folk instruments from the strakharpa to the bulbultarang) Scandinavian mythology, history (of everywhere,) literature, art, and beer. I've dabbled in homebrewing and am one of those jerks that always complains that his beer is too cold when at a bar... I also maintain munngiga, LJ's only jaw harp players' community.
Should any of you be inspired for whatever reason to contact me, use nasrouddine (at) hotmail (dot) com.
Freiherr Albrecht von Schmendrick-Bergschrundalagbon on July 2nd, 2006 08:07 pm (UTC)
Re: I don't participate here often, but this is who I am
I, too, forgot to sign my post. It seems there's an epidemic, nu?
ogun_funmito on July 2nd, 2006 08:53 pm (UTC)
Hello everyone...I'll follow suit:

I'm a 33 year-old male currently living/working/studying in Philadelphia, PA. I was raised on black tea with milk and sugar as far back as I can remember. I always associated it with either breakfast or cold winter nights with a snack.

It wasn't until only last year that I "stepped up" to the high-quality, loose leaf tea world on the recommendation of a friend of mine in Detroit. After only a few samples from Adagio Tea, I was istantly hooked.

Before finding this LJ community I had only been trying oolongs and blacks. My only exposure to green tea is the genmai cha they serve at my favorite sushi restaurant here in Philly - but it's quite good. :) I still consider myself very "new" to loose leaf teas in general and definitely in regards to pu-erh. And as many people here may have figured out by now, I'm captivated by gong-fu brewing. :)

Outside of tea culture I am an undergraduate student with University of Phoenix completing my Bachelor's in Accounting. In addition, I'm an Olosha (title of priest in Lukumi religion) as well as amateur electronic music producer. I mainly compose ambient music, but since going back to school I haven't had much time to work on any tracks. It's just a hobby. :)

Great thread idea!


punman on July 2nd, 2006 10:06 pm (UTC)

I'm 30 and live in Milwaukee where I am a UNIX systems administrator. I work with walt_park who is also a reader of this community.

My exposure to tea has been what most people probably expect from the average American. However, once I started exploring the world of loose leaf teas, I got hooked. Eventually of course, as with all geeks, as one delves deeper into the nuances of any hobby, one finds the esoteric, and the obscure -- in this case, pu-erh.

I've only been drinking pu-erh for a couple months now, so every cup is a new experience. Isn't it great?

I had a couple really bad experiences with cooked pu-erh so I laid off of those for quite a while, but as my tastes tend towards the deeper and stronger end of the spectrum (dark beer, red wine, etc) I'm coming back to the cooked variety. Young sheng just has too much astringency for me. Like a citrusy white wine -- it's just not my thing. :)

walt_park on July 2nd, 2006 10:28 pm (UTC)
Since you asked....
Not quite sure what to say here.

I'm a 32yro, american born, ethnically Korean male, living in the suburbs of the Milwaukee area.

I am not a not a student of traditional chinese medicine, although I was pre-med, and have degrees in biology and chemistry, that I do pretty much nothing with.

Professionally, I'm a UNIX system administrator, or at least that was what I was supposed to be hired for.

I started drinking tea in college, mostly because I didnt like coffee at the time, and it was cheaper than soda. The I got used to coffee, and burned out on starbucks. So... now I'm back to tea.

I'm pretty much a pu-erh newbie hanging out to learn more about this funky rotten tea with the wicked caffeine kick. :)
[satyriasis] - Jason: i drink pubearsbearsbears on July 3rd, 2006 01:37 am (UTC)
This posting thread reminds me of "Song for a Future Generation" by the B52s.

Hi, I'm Jason, born 1983. I just graduated college and I work full time at a legal services firm saving up $$ to go abroad on a sabbatical in order to make important decisions about my life's path. Aside from tea, I enjoy hiking, fiction, fine food & booze, film, and visual arts. However, my greatest passion is travel.

I've been drinking loose-leaf Chinese teas now for four years. I've been drinking sheng pu'er for 1.5 years now; shu pu'er for just over two years. Before pu'er, I drank mostly white and green tea with a few forays into greener oolongs.

I started this lj group as an outlet for my growing obsession and to meet others who enjoy pu'er; obsession loves company! I constantly learn from this and other forums, and I look forward to growing and aging along with my stash of tea.
Drewish: teastudio271 on July 3rd, 2006 02:48 am (UTC)
I'm one of the puerh newcomers, and, as I say, I'm still looking into the metaphorical shop-windows, trying to understand what all is going on in the world of this drink we drink.

I'm a 20-year-old electrical engineering student (Texas A&M University), making up for a poor start at college by going year-round now, hoping to have a BS by 2009. I've been on tea for about 9 months now, and from the few cooked puerhs I've had, I have to say that it is my favorite of all teas (I do enjoy white, green, oolong, black, red, and herbal teas all about the same). What I find I like most about it is the earthy flavor and the complexity attributed as such.

I'm still looking to broaden my puerh experiences in the future, but, as with most college students, my budget is tight.

On the side, my interests include: experimental electronic music, abstract art, diy electronics, cooking (very much anti-"processed sugars" right now), schooling, and "general tomfoolery".

(Deleted comment)
(no subject) - studio271 on July 3rd, 2006 03:03 am (UTC) (Expand)
stevendodd on July 3rd, 2006 03:37 am (UTC)
I figured I'd change my screenname from the very old/unused eskimo-steve to this new one. I usually go by EvenOdd, but it's taken and camped by someone else.

I am 21 years old, born 1984, and male. I go to the University of Missouri-Rolla, which is a small school of about 5500 students. I have a B.S. in Computer Science and will be starting my masters in the fall. Looks like we have a few computer nerds frequenting this place.

I tried teabag tea a few times, and then while watching a technology news online videocast called Diggnation they had an ad for Adagio. I've been drinking loose leaf for about six months. I started out heavy in black tea, but now my favorite is oolong. I usually do black tea in the morning to drink during class and drink oolong in the afternoon after I'm done. (I like drinking peppermint at night, but shhh don't tell).

I've been interested in puerh for about three months now. I forgot how I found this livejournal community, but I got hooked. I went through BBB's posts to see what Jing Tea Shop samples he liked and ordered them to see if I'd be into this whole smelly compost stuff. It's weird going from never drinking tea to staying up late lusting over old smelly hunks of tea on ebay in only six months. I don't have a collection yet, but I plan on it once I figure out my budget after I get back to school.
stevendodd on July 3rd, 2006 03:40 am (UTC)
The school I go to, UMR, is an engineering campus so I know what studio271 has gone through. Though A&M is about 9 times larger than mine.
(no subject) - stevendodd on July 6th, 2006 08:35 am (UTC) (Expand)
hobbesoxon on July 3rd, 2006 09:06 am (UTC)
Great thread - thanks!

I'm a 29 year old into A.I. at Oxford University in the UK. I've been drinking Indian and Ceylon teas for a long time, but have only really explored the wonderous world of Chinese teas since meeting my wife (a Chinese national) two years ago.

I'm definitely no expert, but have spent a good month or so digging around in south-west China, and in Beijing, talking (through my wife!) to various owners of tea-houses, and drinking a lot of their tea.

Since leaving school ten years ago, I have been immersed in Chinese philosophy and culture (Daoism, Taiji, Zen/Chan Buddhism, &c.), and have found that the gongfu style of taking tea matches this very well. Or maybe they are all inevitable given a certain kind of spirit. I think that everyone that reads this LiveJournal must have that already. :)

Has anyone ever read "The Importance of Living", by Lin Yutang? There's a great chapter on tea drinking, written by perhaps one of the last of Mainland China's traditional scholars.
psychopuncture on July 3rd, 2006 02:59 pm (UTC)
Has anyone ever read "The Importance of Living", by Lin Yutang? There's a great chapter on tea drinking, written by perhaps one of the last of Mainland China's traditional scholars.

read it many years ago. thanks for the reminder--i'll have to go back to it for another visit.

[ugh, still can't believe i'm old enough to be able to say "many years ago." jeez, i graduated from high school the year <lj user="bearsbearsbears"] was born...]
(no subject) - psychopuncture on July 3rd, 2006 03:01 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - hobbesoxon on July 3rd, 2006 03:30 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - psychopuncture on July 3rd, 2006 03:56 pm (UTC) (Expand)
estif on July 3rd, 2006 05:31 pm (UTC)
Here's my two cents:

I'm a 41 year old educator living in San Francisco with two children, ages 9 months and 4 years. Lots of sleepness nights--unfortunately, not caused by too much tea consumption! I work at a non-profit educational organziation providing professional development to secondary teachers whose students are English learners. Other outside interests include travel, Spain (lived there for a couple of years), Spanish literature, and hiking.

I'm very much a newbie to tea and to pu-erh in general. This group has definitely inspired my to explore much more than I would have.


psychopuncture on July 4th, 2006 04:16 am (UTC)
Re: Introduction
thank god. someone my age...


glad to have another bay-arean here too.

- mike
Re: Introduction - estif on July 4th, 2006 05:00 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Introduction - psychopuncture on July 4th, 2006 05:21 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - cloudwayfarer on July 3rd, 2006 10:47 pm (UTC) (Expand)
thsu on July 4th, 2006 05:28 am (UTC)
Do you know Winnie and Mike at T-gallery NYC?
(no subject) - cloudwayfarer on July 4th, 2006 07:00 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - marshaln on July 5th, 2006 02:25 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - cloudwayfarer on July 5th, 2006 06:36 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thsu on July 5th, 2006 03:03 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - cloudwayfarer on July 5th, 2006 06:33 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - davelcorp on July 5th, 2006 06:58 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - cloudwayfarer on July 6th, 2006 01:39 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - davelcorp on July 6th, 2006 02:55 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - psychopuncture on July 6th, 2006 03:15 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - cloudwayfarer on July 8th, 2006 06:59 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - marshaln on July 9th, 2006 06:58 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - cloudwayfarer on July 9th, 2006 07:57 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - phyll_sheng on July 6th, 2006 06:13 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - cloudwayfarer on July 8th, 2006 06:39 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - davelcorp on July 9th, 2006 10:01 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - cloudwayfarer on July 9th, 2006 11:58 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: gratitude - houde on July 13th, 2006 05:14 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - cloudwayfarer on July 13th, 2006 09:08 pm (UTC) (Expand)
phyll_sheng on July 4th, 2006 01:22 am (UTC)
MAM*, 30, Los Angeles, Financial/Tax Analyst (CPA) for a large soul-less national mortgage bank. Seeking friendship to drink tea and share tea lore with. Down to earth and easygoing. Hobby includes photography, wine, tea, and the arts. Are you the lucky one? ;)

*Married Asian Male (with a 10-month old daugther).

I was exposed to Chinese gongfu tea at 15 thanks to my martial art master. So I was learning gongfu fighting and gongfu brewing at the same time...Haiya! Btw, my master resembled Mister Miyagi (of Karate Kid)...only he was Chinese.

I abandoned tea drinking when I came to the US 12 years ago for lack of tea supply, money and time. Got into wine a few years after I graduated from a local MBA institute so I could then afford a bit of luxury. Then, I thought why concentrate only on wine when the eastern culture can be as expensive as the west...let's get back to gongfu brewing! (still trying to get back to gongfu fighting, but this has been very slow coming due to multiple excuses I can creatively come up with).

So with wine and teas as some of my obsessions naturally I'm quite broke, but driking decent teas and wines. Oh, well...
thsu on July 4th, 2006 06:40 am (UTC)
Toki is a one and a-half years old Rhodesian Ridgeback pup, my practice child in some way. I am 33 almost-marry-man just moved to NJ from NYC.
A Graphic designer focusing in Publishing and Company ID.

Started drinking Cantonese High Fired Kung-Fu since 3 years old. Picked up collectable puerhs around 5 years ago and since been swamped in pools of debt....
Don't know much about it in the beginning, and was cheated on / ripped off, until I packed my bags and when to Yiwu and Kunming last Fall. Too many myths and lies!

Vintage Cigars is my first love. Others interests include Yixing, Chinese antique furniture, wine, good food, good company and more tea.
I can be reach at: thsu@hsuandassociates.com or http://themandarinstea.blogspot.com

phyll_sheng on July 4th, 2006 07:56 am (UTC)
"Started drinking Cantonese High Fired Kung-Fu since 3 years old."

Isn't that, like, child endangerment / abuse? :)
(no subject) - thsu on July 5th, 2006 03:06 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - phyll_sheng on July 6th, 2006 06:23 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - davelcorp on July 5th, 2006 03:42 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - davelcorp on July 5th, 2006 04:23 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thsu on July 5th, 2006 04:37 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - marshaln on July 11th, 2006 01:48 am (UTC) (Expand)
marshaln on July 5th, 2006 02:20 am (UTC)
I'm a 26 year old grad student doing Chinese history. I've been drinking tea seriously for about... 7 years now. The first tea revelation I had was when I bought a bag of mingqian longjing. It opened my eyes to better tea (before that I didn't care that much about what kind of tea I drank). Since then, I tried various kinds of teas, and now I pretty much drink everything, although mostly oolongs and puerh.

I don't have other interests. Tea consumes my life, hahahahahaha