So, how did I break the thing anyway?
No, it did not involve catastrophic drops or bangs or anything, in fact, it was quite routine — which made it all the more surprising.
See…. this pot (and many others I own) have a single hole design. Single holed pots are more prone to leaves getting stuck in them. Personally, I don’t mind it very much. I actually prefer it to multi-holed pots. Don’t ask me why.
Normally, when a pot gets stuck, I use the little tool that we all have — that long, thin thing that was designed for this purpose. Ok, good, except that this time, when I was pulling it out, it seems that the slightly oval cross section means that one side was wider than the other, and when the pulling out was coupled with a slight (unwitting) turning motion….. it pushed on the walls of the spout, and it snapped.
Older yixings tend to be a little less sturdy. This is a well known fact — people I know in HK who are more experienced than I in older pots all tell me to be careful with them, especially the handles, which break off all the time. Alas, it applies to spouts too.
So, now I am going to be very careful using that spout clearing tool. I know I’m not the only one who had this happen — Danica of the LA Tea Group also had (from what she described) an identical accident with an older pot. Be careful when you use that thing!