If further proof were needed that the world is mad then it came this week in the shape of an experiment in our very own county.
You may wonder what fantastically vital piece of scientific investigation has taken place. Is it something to help with the ebola crisis?
Could it be a breakthrough that will secure our energy needs? Maybe a solution to the ongoing problem of climate change?
Actually no. It’s none of those things. It’s something far more important.
Oh, wait a minute, no it’s not.
Master chocolatier John Costello and his team from the Nestle Product Technology Centre (PTC) in York have created a chocolate teapot that is able to brew a cup of tea.
I know the question you are going to ask. The answer is dark chocolate – if it was milk chocolate those who like their tea black would be presented with a fait accompli.
And white chocolate – surely that’s a no no?
Anyway, the team’s challenge was to develop a teapot that could withstand boiling water enough to let the tea brew for two minutes before pouring.
Mr Costello enlisted some of the PTC’s top scientists and engineers to help in its development and solved the problem after a range of experiments.
He said they found that the secret was to use dark chocolate with 65% chocolate solids, due to its fat content, and build up a series of layers using a silicon mould. The whole process took around two-and-a-half hours.
I’m not being funny but if I needed two and a half hours to make a teapot to create a quick brew then I think I’d be too parched to lift it up when it was finally brewed.
It appears that Mr Costello is a straight talker when he admitted: “What we found is that when we first started to look at it we’d probably end up with chocolate tea,” he said.
“Interestingly, if you pour the water in a certain way and you don’t stir inside and you just let it settle and let it brew like you would normally brew a cup of tea, and just let it stand for a little while – when you pour it, what happens is that the chocolate on the inside of the shell melts but doesn’t move anywhere.
“It stays where it is. So you get a very, very small amount of residue coming up to the top.”
Tasting the final brew, the team concluded it was a lovely cup of tea with a slight hint of chocolate.
So, actually, it isn’t a proper teapot after all. I mean you don’t expect to get chocolate tea.
It’s like saying I drank some orange pop out of a bucket I found in the garden. It’s lovely but a bit manurey.
That’s certainly not how I like my drinks – and I suspect you’re the same.
But I sound churlish. They’ve taken an old adage and used modern technology to bend the rules on things we all believed were certain and to create doubt.
Which is no bad thing.
I look forward to a wide ranging study of where bears leave their waste and a team discovering that they actually use a wetroom rather than a sun-dappled wooded glade.
I’m not sure that they’ll get much success in proving the Pope isn’t a Catholic though.
But I’ll certainly keep an eye out for them proving the old adage ‘You’re as much use as an inflatable dartboard’ to be incorrect.
I wish the researchers good luck.