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.

Monday, October 14, 2013


For the past few weeks, summery September has faded into a brisk and brittle October, and lately it is chilly from dusk till dawn in the city. No, there will not be many crunchy leaves underfoot; this is the Bay Area, we do not have the classic four seasons, and we are far from a forest in any case.
The ginkgo trees will turn yellow in a few weeks, though, gilding those streets lucky enough to have them -- down near Battery on Sacramento, or up between Leavenworth and Jones on Clay, as well as in front of the projects in Chinatown on Pacific. There may still be quite a few warm days, but they will be punctuated by sweater weather, till at last the rain comes.

Whereupon people will say stupid things.

"I don't mind; we really need the rain"

"It's not the cold, it's the humidity"

As well as:

"Why does everyone smell like wet dog?"

Truth be told, San Franciscans always bellyache about the weather.
Just shut up and be glad we have some.
This isn't New York.

From late summer all the way to early winter is the perfect time to enjoy certain Virginia compounds from our friend the Lat Bomber.
Otherwise known as Greg Pease.
And, unresisting, I have fallen into open tins of two of his blends.
There is immense pleasure among the leaves.
Life is very good.

Virginia and Perique

Spicy, bold even, but not a tobacco that will bash you around on the school yard. It's a mostly flue-cured ribbony mixture that makes itself known without bullying, and might in some ways remind you of Dunbar by Esoterica. There is Perique in here, behaving gracefully rather than thug-like as it so often does. From personal experience I know that several bowls of this can be smoked in quick succession while high as a kite on caffeine, and amidst a social crowd of cigar smokers. We dare not get up and go to the bathroom, because there are vulgarians behind us who will steal our seats. So we light another bowl, and wait for them to eventually leave.
Oh Thomas, one more whisky please! Thank you.

Grassy in the tin -- that's the lighter Virginias -- but I suspect that there is also more than a touch of fire-cured leaf. It hints of toast.

Virginia Flake

Oh yes! This is a classic. The grassy notes shade into a tangy fruitiness, and if this were aged a couple of years you would never share it with anyone, but hide in your basement far away from other pipe smokers.
Go away, I am not home! You don't hear me! I am invisible!

But there is no need to wait. It smokes fine without prolonged maturity, providing a rich soothing medium flake experience, brights and browns with a touch of red. Mid-afternoons wandering around Chinatown are made lovely by this, the time spent lost in thought near the back-end of the Four Seas on Waverly was remarkably productive in consequence. This tobacco is perfect and sweet and enchanting and just dreamy after a charsiu turnover and a hot cup of Hong Kong milk-tea at Hang Fook.

I wonder if that rowdy teenage girl is a delinquent.
Or just likes hanging out with the boys.
She's got a laughing eye.


It's been a good weekend. I restored several Dunhills and Charatans, plus a Barling Ye Olde Wood Canadian and a Becker & Musico black sandblast military mount. Dinner on Saturday was chicken and vegetable over rice (菜遠雞球飯 'choi yuen gai kau fan') and a tall glass Vietnamese ice-coffee (凍咖啡 'tong ka fe'), on Sunday night I had a petite baguette with Italian meats and peperoncinis, and a latte.

BTW, the title of this post rendered into Chinese to caption the afterthought, is also the name of the bright young missy (秋香 'chau heung') courted by China's most famous middle-aged perv: 唐伯虎 ('tong paak fu' - old uncle Tang). There's a sprightly and entertaining comic opera about that. This is neither here nor there, being absolutely irrelevant to the subject at hand.
Just a happy coincidence.
A fortuity, if you will.

Despite what you may have heard, I am not a middle-aged pervert.
I am, in fact, still quite young.


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

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