Friday, June 2, 2017

Tea and Mana, A Magic The Gathering Tea Fusion, Part Three: Allied Colored Guilds

It is that time again, time to return to Ravnica! Actually, it might be soon, for any of you following along with the various stories that story about Mazirek was full of interesting potential! Much as I love the Golgari and could talk about them all day, they are not here today, they can be found here and the original post on pairing tea and Mana can be found here, just in case you missed it and want to know exactly what I am talking about.

Blue-Black House Dimir

They don't exist and therefore do not get a tea...next...
Ok we all know they exist, they are the guild of secrets, assassins, spies, and rogues, with that list of jobs thinking they are a myth is only fitting. Combining Blue's love of knowledge (and the hoarding of it) with Black's need for accumulating power, you would think this would be my favorite guild (what with being Black-Blue-Red) but I never really connected with them. However, I do love their vampires, instead of being blood-sucking undead, they are the Moroii (yes, they share the name with Romania's folklore vampire) they feed on the vitality, memories, and thoughts of their victims...essentially making them the perfect information brokers and I just really like that take on vampires. (Although, in The Secretist one of them does bite Jace, so maybe there is some blood-sucking) I decided to be a little silly with the Dimir's tea, I wanted something that was a tea and also not a tea (since oooh they are spooky and don't exist) which brings us nicely to one of my favorite teas, Yabao. There is a heated debate in the right parts of the teaworld, is this a tea? Is it in fact Camellia taliensis instead of sinensis? Does that even really matter? And no, it really doesn't, all that matters is that it tastes really good, like the stolen memories of winter and forests.

Blue-White- Azorius Senate

What do you get when you combine Blue's knowledge obsession and White's desperate need to instill order? You get the tasty depths of bureaucratic hell! That is unfair, the Azorius are not that bad, and someone needs to act as a mediator to the chaos that is the Guilds constantly bickering with each other, they spend hours creating decrees (many of which are blatantly ignored) and most of Ravnica is not a huge fan of the Azorius. Though without them there would be no Guilds, it was Grad Arbiter Azor I an inordinately huge chunk of fantasy time ago (ughhh 10,000 years ago) who wrote the Guildpact...though he did rig the plane to explode if things go wrong because of course he did.
I like the Azorius Senate, I find them an interesting concept but have found their implications kinda boring. The tea I chose for them is not boring, it is the light, delicate, expensive, beauty that is Bai Ji Guan. It is one of those teas that when drinking brings great inspiration (I like to drink it grandpa style while going on deep research dives) but clears my mind and brings me peace, a perfect combination of White and Blue.

Black-Red- Cult of Rakdos

This is, in my opinion, one of the worst guilds. The Cult of Rakdos is a BDSM themed circus of demon worshippers who throw wild parties and shows which often kill members of the audience (why on earth would you even go if you are not a member of Rakdos is beyond me) Red is the color of personal freedom and Black of personal empowerment and I do not see how joining a demon cult embodies either of those aspects. I want to like the Black-Red since those are two of my main colors, but no, I am very much not impressed. Deciding what tea to pick was surprisingly easy, since Rakdos clearly wants to be a really bad 80s Heavy Metal album (seriously, look at Rakdos cult art, it is ridiculous) so I needed a tea that was really intense, really on fire, and very metal...so I went with the cheapest Shui Xian Yancha from Sea Dyke I could find. It tastes like an inferno, is very intense, and very cheap...it is a tea I am greatly fond of when I have a cold and can't really taste anything.

Red-Green- Gruul Clans

This Guild started out as group in charge of taking care of Ravnica's wild spaces and keeping the expanse of civilization in check, as you can imagine on a plane that is a giant city they pretty quickly lost their jobs. They went a little organic Mad Max and really gave up on civilization, dividing into clans out in the Wastes and ineffectually plot the downfall of the plane. They are chaos incarnate and even though there is not much going on, I can respect that, especially since the various guilds took away their wild spaces and eventually wrote them out of the law, they got a seriously raw deal. For them, I wanted a tea that was intense and simple, something you would grab in a mug on your way to sowing chaos, but something that is cheap and not necessarily refined. I chose a black orange pekoe, steeping it will give you a quick strong cup with little nuance and a lot of caffeine.

Green-White- Selesnya Conclave

Do you like trees? Dryads? Joining a brainwashing nature cult? Then let me introduce you to the Selesnya Conclave! Long ago, the dryad leaders of Selesnya joined together into a massive magical tree hive mind, and they think that eventually, we can all achieve the peace and harmony of nature that they have...I like nature but I do find that a little creepy...too much, dial it down a bit Mat'Selesnya! The Selesnya gets a lot of hate in the fandom, and it is sad, they might be a nature cult but the core ideas of merging peace and nature is beautiful and reminds me of my mom, so I picked one of her favorite teas to represent it. Jin Xuan Oolong, that delightfully sweet Taiwanese Oolong she often compares to her love of gardens and spring.

Next installment will take us to Tarkir to look at the truly fantastic clans, and I promise I won't complain too much about how Dragon's Tarkir is not as awesome as Khan's Tarkir. Stupid Ugin ruins everything.

No comments:

Post a Comment