At the back of the hill

Warning: If you stay here long enough you will gain weight! Grazing here strongly suggests that you are either omnivorous, or a glutton. And you might like cheese-doodles.
BTW: I'm presently searching for another person who likes cheese-doodles.
Please form a caseophilic line to the right. Thank you.

Sunday, September 23, 2012


As I do every nearly every Saturday night, I went to the cigar club to have a few pipefulls.  It is quieter there on Saturday than during the week, because the conventioneers and bankers are largely absent. 
Consequently there is a relaxed atmosphere, and often pleasant company.
There is no other place to smoke indoors in the city anymore.
And a pipe is best enjoyed in brightness, inside.

Plus they have Wi-Fi!  Apparently we aficionados of decent tobacco are devoted to our jobs and must be connectable at all times. 
In fact, I'm thinking of having an electrical cord and several co-axial cables installed in my nether regions so that I can be contacted when and wherever.
Call me sometime, and don't be surprised if I let it ring for a while.

Oh, the excitement!

Often when I'm there someone will ask me about pipes and tobacco. 
Many young men who enjoy cigars (and fresh-faced youngsters should NOT smoke those things, what ARE you thinking?!?) have experimented with a pipe, but never managed to get the hang of it.
What, they want to know, are they doing wrong?
Please explain the process.

Very well.
Here are all the answers.
This is your new religion.

Sometimes I am avuncular, talkative, and resemble a pope.


The reason for carrying around several pipes is that you must let each one rest a bit after use.  The carbon layer inside the bowl will dry out, and go through a series of minor chemical changes.  Allowing it to do so yields a cleaner-smoking sweeter pipe which will serve you infinitely longer than oversmoking just one pipe will.
Nothing is worse than a sodden, dull, sour, nasty-smelling piece of wood which gurgles unpleasantly with each new load, and drips tarry goo.
Take good care of it, and you will be a much happier person.
Oh, and both of you will smell better too.
That's somewhat important.


The shape does not significantly influence smoking qualities.  Almost all pipes have a very similar internal design. Yes, there are variations, and a broad deep bowl will give a different smoke than a shallow little dipper - but the external dimensions are mostly merely matters of comfort and visual appeal. 


Virginia tobaccos tend toward sweetness and an herbal fragrance, and must be smoked so slow that they are at the edge of going out.  Oriental blends, which are also called English blends, can be smoked at a faster clip, almost hot-boxed. The smell of Oriental blends tends to startle and dismay many non-smokers, but the exceptions to that are truly exceptional.
In both cases the tobacco will be packed wetter in the tin than is suitable for smoking.  Dry it out until it feels just a little too dry, almost dessicated.

Do not indulge overmuch in aromatic blends.
Unless you have slutty tendencies.


Do not pack tight, as you can always tamp it down while you puff.
Do not smoke hot, do not puff like mad.  And use pipe cleaners.
Put less tobacco in the pipe than you think necessary, so that the bowl ends on a note of "gee, that was wonderful", rather than "darn, the last ten minutes were an arduous chore".


Two things: your girlfriend is looking utterly bored right now.  Good god, she's rigid with ennui. Why did you bring her to a cigar bar?  It's wonderful that she will endure this for you, but it would have been far, far better if you had not subjected her to it.  She's precious, and the fact that she was willing to come along proves that you are a very lucky fellow. 
But for heavens sakes, man, don't prolong the torture. 
Take her somewhere special tomorrow.

The other thing is that hanging around all these cigar and pipe smokers is guaranteed to get that horrible new car smell out of the clothes you had drycleaned like nothing else.
So it would have been much better if you had come here during the week fresh from work, dressed in office drag.
You would leave smelling pleasantly like autumn leaves and a fresh coat of roofing tar, rather than petrochemical byproducts and cancer-causing cleaning fluids.

Trust me on this.
I'm a pope, I can say these things.


NOTE: Readers may contact me directly:
All correspondence will be kept in confidence.



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