please empty your brain below

Fine. Hide your desires, bury your true feelings. But one day you will break... oh yes. One day.

One other idea - is there a worktop close to where the vending machines are? If so, could you not either a) get a kettle put there, or b) on the dubious "health and safety" premise, ask that the management first of all try the foul brew coming from the machine and then install a proper hot water device (one of the ones with the "on-demand" taps, thus not breaking health and safety).

The added side-effect of b) is that once they see the cost of such a thing, they may just put in a kettle...

The third floor tried putting a kettle in their kitchen. It was removed.


Get whoever said "it's a health and safety issue" to drink a cup of vending machine tea, and then follow it up with a frank discussion of the health and safety issues of you going postal in the workplace for the want of a decent cuppa.

By the way, we got a kettle AND a fridge on Health and Safety grounds, so your office is obviously managed by arseholes.

I wonder if the Health and Safety laws conflict with Human Rights legislation? Could be worth a try...

Point out to H&S this article and see what they have to say about the dangerous bacteria in vending machines.

My mum has a thingy that plugs into the mains. It has an element that you stick in a cup of water and it boils in about a minute. She takes it on holiday with her along with some tea bags because she says you can't get a decent cup of tea abroad. She can't remember where she bought it.

Try this - ask to see the risk assessment they must have done on the use of kettles which concluded that kettles were a health and safety risk. If they haven't done one, then they are definitely lying about it being about 'health and safety'. If they have done one, then they are truly evil and dedicated to said evil, but you could probably challenge said risk assessment.

Quite a few academic institutions publish their H&S policies on the web, and many of those specify that rest areas *should* have a kettle.

I'm not an expert, but I think the issue is that if an employee brings in a kettle, it's a H&S risk because it hasn't been tested for electrical safety. But if the organisation provides the kettle, and tests it regularly for electrical safety (like it should all mains electrical equipment) then there isn't a problem.

Shoot them and burn the bodies.

I don't know how big your organisation is but the important thing is "what does the big boss do?".
Does he/she and his/her important visitors have their tea from a machine? If not does the pa have a real kettle and make real tea? Have they china cups? Do they have a health and safety problem?

I think, and I may be wrong (I often am) that the H&S is a ruse. It's actually an insurance thing - much like there is no actual H&S law against having a smoking room in an office but insurance premiums are higher if an office does.

Unfortunately we have 'on demand' taps which give out hot or cold filtered water. Ours frequently fail. Not to mention it's positioned over the sink in a narrow kitchen which restricts the number of people making a hot drink to 2 or 3 at a time. Useless...

If you don't mind green tea, it can be steeped at much lower water temperatures than boiling. And it is healthy for you.

just a thought.

While my workplace has not banned the kettle, the fridge and kitchen are so bad that milk won't last two days in the fridge without going sour due to bacteria and low temps, so I don't use fresh milk - I use NIDO. It's whole milk dried - I found it in the spanish/mexican food sections of Walgreens and Walmart. It makes drinkable work/travel tea possible.

Without access to heating water, here's what I would do - make quad strengh tea at home - I do mine in a chatsford pot and let it cool. 8 ounces will fit in a small container you can carry in your pocket. (A small water bottle for instance.) Then mix this with the almost-hot water at work in a 3 water to 1 tea ratio. Add a teaspoon of NIDO, stir, and while it's not great tea, it's way better than machine made tea. If you can sneak one of the boil in the cup makers into your office, do it. It's worth the trouble. It's called an "Immersion Heater", and you can get one from Amazon, or any travel/luggage store. They take a long while to boil, but they're safe for office use because they're low-wattage and won't pop a circuit breaker and give you away. If you can get away with it, a Bodum Mini-Ibis is fantastic. I take one with me when I travel. Amazon also carries them. It is 1000 watts, so it can over-load an already heavily loaded circuit, but not like a full-wattage kettle.

Good luck!

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