i have been raising a teapot (养茶壶) these past months, but had hit something of a snag; instead of boasting a lustrous patina, my pot looked muddy and unkempt. fortunately, this weekend, i went to the teashop and learned about “teapot beauty treatments”.
apparently, teapots have pores that like their human counterparts get clogged, leading to dull and blotchy skin. however, if one keeps pouring hot water on them and then lightly polishes them with a smooth scowering pad to remove the tea scum, then the luster returns and the teapot really does look better.
so yesterday, i spent way too much time polishing my teapots (yes i’ve bought more than i need) and now really understand 养 in the way of taking care of a chia-pet, which in turn has me thinking about the intersection of ethics and aesthetics — when we take the time to take care of our immediate environment, we do make the world more beautiful.