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PROBE: Jan. 16, 2002

January 16, 2002

QUESTION: When I read an article recently that drinking tea, green or black, regularly will protect you against cancer, I wanted to get some. Apparently I was the last to know. The price was sky high. I bought the cheapest brand I could find. It was $4 for 20 tea bags.

One tea bag makes a weak tea. I can take on a new expense of $6 or $7 a week. Is there any way to get the benefits of tea without giving up cable? — Health Conscious, Imperial

We found Lipton tea at Costco with 272 tea bags for $5.99. But there may be a better deal out there. A friend in Dallas said he bought a 5-pound can of bulk tea for $7.50 at a Chinese market.

We know PROBE readers are not going to Dallas to buy 5 pounds of tea. With that in mind, we surveyed several Chinese markets for bulk tea. We didn't find any.

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Bulk Chinese tea would not be a big seller in Imperial County, since the Chinese population is relatively small. You might check Chinese markets or restaurants in Mexicali or in San Diego.

You can make tea from almost anything but if you're talking about real tea, there's not much difference in any because they all come from the same plants. The most expensive teas are from the tender small leaves picked from the top of the plant. As the pickers work down the plant, the bigger leaves get progressively cheaper.

The difference in black tea and green tea is in the processing. Black tea is produced by fermenting green tea leaves.

BUCK KNIFE RETURNED — The U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service returned my pocketknife it took from me at the border. I had had that knife for 40 years. The late Chuck Kilgore, the former county supervisor, gave it to me.

Duncan Hunter got it back for me. I called his office and talked to Carole Starr. Right away I got the knife in the mail. — Satisfied, El Centro

We don't blame you for wanting the knife back. Kilgore was a memorable character, an ex-Marine sergeant and tough as nails. When a miscreant tried to rob Kilgore in his liquor store, the then-middle-aged Kilgore beat the would-be robber savagely, sending the younger man to the hospital.

QUESTION: Did the parents of the toddler with leukemia get any help in taking her to her treatments in San Diego? — Concerned, Imperial

A west end farmer set up an account for 500 gallons of gasoline to fill the tanks of the baby's parents and grandparents, who take turns taking her to San Diego for treatments.

A group of employees at the Holly Sugar plant will hold a tri-tip dinner Jan. 23 at the Moose Lodge in Imperial. They're hoping to raise $7,000. Tickets for the tri-tip dinner are $7 each. The lodge donated the building for the cause.

You can get tickets from Cindy Lopez or any of the participating employees at the sugar plant, including Bill Woelke.

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