Have you ever came across a Malaysian who genuinely doesn't like the taste of a nice warm teh tarik??? Not that they can't consume it but they just don't like it??? Hurmmm... they exist but they are a very rare species indeed. Just like the rare species of people who doesn't fancy being in love. Well of course, teh tarik, like love, is everywhere and found at every corner of the Malaysian land yet they are also getting overshadowed by the emergence of lattes and mochas... But does it mean that it is getting less significant in our lives or the other alternatives are just options to forsake something that's always been in our blood??
Notice that a cuppa teh tarik goes anytime in a daily basis, be it for breakfast to start your day or for a late nite supper with friends after battling it up in a futsal game. It never goes wrong on your taste buds and it will never burn your tongue too (hence the purpose of tariking it, get it?)... Hurmm, but in some cases, the mamak will accidently (ye ke?) give you a glass that is either too hot or too cold. Having ordered it already and not wanting to be fussy, you patiently wait the hot one to cool down or just gulp down the cold one with frustration in your heart going "damn, i should've gone to the other joint instead of this one... kenapalah aku ikut depa nie ha?"... Is it a wrong choice made or it's just pure poor luck that you have to settle down with that glass? Of course there is a choice of exchanging the glass for another one and crossing your fingers that the mamak doesn't do something nasty to your new glass... Dare? Then you swear to yourself that you'll never order another teh tarik when you join the same crowd here. More extreme, never to set your foot there again and spread the word of "wisdom" about the joint for the crime of offending the art of making teh tarik :P
On a different scope, do me a favor by choosing a food that goes wrong with teh tarik... Almost none, i reckon. Even a risotto tastes incredibly delicious matched with teh tarik... That's how flexible it is. Yet it definitely has one food that is THE match for your personal taste, be it a plate of maggi goreng or a puffed crispy roti canai. Just like the case where every other mamak joint or a five star hotel offers a variety taste of teh tarik that is up to your choice to covet for. Can you stand enjoying a glass of wonderfully blended teh tarik alternated with the stench of smoke from automobiles at the road stall that has rodents playing hide and seek around it or would you rather compromise the taste for a simpler one served at an air-conditioned restaurant... Again, the choice is entirely yours to make and having made it, yeah, you can change it anytime you like but the question to ponder upon then is whether you can face the change and relive the taste as you once had.
And teh tarik is all about balance and getting the distinction that naturally separates it in its own class... You have to get the bitterness and sweetness well seamed that you can't tell what's so special about it yet it is so significant to be programmed as the best in your brain... The next thing you know, you'll be coming around every now and then, fetching for the same cup, savouring over it as if it is, indeed, the pleasure like no other God has granted to give you on Earth. And when you get the wrong cup that either is too sweet or too bitter for you, you'll shake your head and say "uh uh.. that ain't my cup of tea" literally. And when you had too many of the wrong ones, you'll then just give up and switch to a glass of OJ instead all the time... Imagine if that goes wrong too...Yup, life can be more surprising than we'd ever thought before, ain't it? Plus, teh tarik can also go wrong for people who are on diet who will soon have to discover that the teh tariks they had just helped to lower their metabolisme rate...
On many angles, teh tarik, like love, can be foreseen as a passion that makes you ride high and low. For some even, it's the love-hate realtionship. You can't stand it when it's around and it gives you terrible migraine too. But you long for it when you haven't been igniting your senses with its strong and sensuous sting for a while. It makes you make the hard decisions in life and it also suggests that life can be more than just half the glass if you tried hard enough to search for it and sacrifice along the way while you're at it... Just keep in mind that you can never have too much of teh tariks in your life... and so applies about love.
*if you feel like you've read this, you probably did.. hehehe*