September 15, 2008

Coffee Break vol. #11

Today is a little cooler than normal and it's a bit overcast here, for now, so I've broken with the traditional cup of coffee and reached for this big ole mug made by my good friend Dan Finnegan to make a cup of tea. It's a big cup and the glaze is a beautiful olive green to amber over a crackle slip. This mug is too big for my coffee but makes a great tea mug that keeps the tea warm in these cooler days. Dan originally donated this mug for a "Empty Cups" event we were planning for the New Orleans NCECA that was canceled and moved to Pittsburgh. So he agreed to give it to me in exchange for one of my mugs. But this is a gentle "reminder to self" to send Dan a mug! Guilty as charged. Sorry Dan. I'll make some mugs for next firing and pick the best for you.
It's also appropriate that I make my first tea of the Fall with one of Dan's cups. A few years ago I taught at Penland with Dan and we overlapped a little bit with the same class. Dan had tea every afternoon with the class and it was a very nice time to stop our work and sit down together and have tea and talk about whatever, usually pottery. So I carried on the tea time after Dan left. It was great. Then I taught again a couple of years later and, to my surprise, and glee, one of my students, I believe it was Ron G. presented me with a care package from Dan, full of tea, some sweets and a note wishing me a good workshop. What a mensch![that's Yiddish for mensch] So this mug of Earl Gray goes out to Dan! I'm thinking about you today buddy, as I sip my tea. Read Dan's blog, it's a good one.