Wednesday, February 24, 2010


The answer to that question is "seriously affected". Sick, even.
You see, I had a foretaste of Purim last night. No, I did not have a riotous party with the younger members of my shul, and no we did not end up stumbling down Polk Street at four in morning singing 'Yankif der Gonif' at the top of our lungs. That would have been better.

The evening started off quite different than it ended. A friend from the yeshiva was in the area, we went and had dinner at the only kosher restaurant in downtown San Francisco. Over dinner we discussed various things, and true to Godwin's Rule of Analogies, eventually the Rambam was cited.

[Godwin's Rule of Analogies, also called Godwin's Law. To paraphrase: "As a conversation progresses, the likelihood that someone will mention the Rambam approaches 1", meaning that it is almost inevitable that you will hear the name Moishe ben Maimon today.]

Then the Ramban was also mentioned, as well as a gentleman named Pablo Cristiani. At this point a rabbi from Australia joined in the conversation. So far, so good.

Continuing the discussion after dinner, I suggested that as I wished to smoke, and would rather not do so in a downpour, we should go to the Occidental Cigar Club to indulge in a hospitable atmosphere.
So we did.

Normally I light up a pipe while there but I did not do so last night, because, as I explained to my friend, I was experimenting with a new blend.
The logic is this: normally I smoke two or three bowls while there, which means two or three drinks. This new experimental tobacco recipe is the best imitation of the Balkan Sobranie Mixture that I have ever compounded, and so delicious that I would end up smoking five or six bowls, finally stumbling out at closing with a serious whooze on.
That would mean that I would wake up in the morning with a headache and nausea from the five or six drinks, and a mouth feeling like a camel had crawled in and died a violent death there.
So no. No pipe. Just a small cheroot, and just one drink.

After my friend left for the airport, I went to another bar.

That's when things began to go south.

During the first drink there (my second drink of the evening), a woman entered.


Meaning, in this case, a deliciously curvy Mongolian girl-person with bad clothing choices and exhibitionist tendencies. She caught my eye from the moment she sat down twenty feet away, and even from that distance I could tell that she was dangerous. Eric, another customer of the bar, was near her, and after ten minutes he moved over to my end of the bar muttering to himself "stay out of trouble, stay out of trouble".
When he went to the bathroom she snaked out a hand and grabbed him by the shoulder. He politely wrestled himself loose.
When he came back, she followed him to our end. Within minutes Eric excused himself and left. So she focused her attention on me.
Now, something you might not know about me is that I am able to have a calm conversation, looking people in the eye, instead of stuttering while staring at their extremely attractive and creamy luscious cleavage, no matter how low-cut and flimsy their upper garment. I'm talented that way.
That flesh looked incredibly soft and warm while we talked. Good heavens.

Her off-kilter looniness and my dry responses cut the discussion short.

Disappointed in me, she headed over to the far end of the room, where she made a succession of men aware of her assets. They were indeed very fine assets - lovely poofy roundnesses, not of any great size, but utterly perfect of shape. And kudos for presentation!
Alas, the sheer craziness of her discourse chased all of the gentlemen away, one after another. At various points she huffed to herself, palm-smacked a table, bent over deeply, twitched, extended a leg in an eccentric dance move, or pouted fiercely (her face looked kissy-poo insane when she did so), before advancing on the next victim.
She seemed to have more tics than a clock, and the spectacle was exceedingly entertaining - I had four more whiskeys while enjoying the show.

When I got home at twelve, I decided to smoke a pipe after all.
Which, as it turns out, was the mistake that made the Purim Fairy come early this year - I poured myself a drink to accompany the smoke. Then I had another pipe full, and another drink. And another. One more of each.
What the heck, one more.

And that, my friends, explains today's very first post. And why I feel like crap.


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


Anonymous said...

It's good to get into the habit that when you're home, you stop drinking (at least heavily) and start hydrating. By all means, smoke all you want, but lay off the scotch and give the liver a rest. A trick I've learned is take two aspirin with a tumbler of water. In the morning, consume sugar water (kool aid stuff) for more hydration and quick energy, since your stomach probably won't be in the mood for food. Just sayin'.

Rabbi Pinky Schmeckelstein said...

It sounds to me like I departed the evening a bit too early. I mean, she sounds a bit more engaging than the Australian Rabbi who weighed in on the historical Shailah. Could you not have arranged a meeting with the Cossack woman for the entire Hanhalah of the Yeshiva, rather than keep all the fun to yourself? Is this what you call Hachnasas Orchim in San Francisco? What would Avraham Avinu have done?

Graham said...

'scuse me - thanks for the splendid peephole of life in SF/CF .... but...

there are Cossacks
and there are Mongolians

but as far as I know they are not the same bunch

I have that on good authority from a yak


The back of the hill said...

From the Urban Dictionary:

Definition number two: A strumpet/hussy/tease of eastern European decent that is approximately 5-12 years behind current fashion trends.
"Look at the acid washed jeans and feathered hair style on that Cossack Slut"
Definition number three: In addition to the dated wardrobe, cossack sluts all have a distinctive style of dance which somewhat resembles a stripper of generations past.
What the fuck..check that cossack slut on the dance floor, she's dancing like she has 2 left feet.

Click:Urban dictionary

She spoke Russian and German in addition to English and Mongol, AND informed everyone that she had European blood in her.... so, because of her phenomenal bad dress sense, and her clearly being a spoiled-brat daughter of the pampered apparatchik class (multiple Soviet empire languages), the term 'Cossack Slut" naturally came to mind.

The back of the hill said...

Plus the term Cossack slut is so evocative!

As John Wayne might have said (in the movie that he tried to surpress for years): "To reach that Cossack slut's arms, Jamooga, I would sell my people into Mongol bondage."

And yes, everyone in The Conqueror had Cossack-sluttish dress sense and dance moves.

Sobranie759 said...

How about the components of that Sobranie clone?

Now this is important!!!!!

The back of the hill said...

Very well then, Frederick,

Latakia: between 37.5 and 42.5%
Turkish: btwn 25 and 28.5%.
Medium flake: 20% - more or less.
Ribbon: btwn 4 and 8%
Cavendish: btwn 5 and 10%

Why so approximate? Several reasons. Firstly, my recipe, so my little paranoid secret. Heh.

Mainly because taste is subjective, coupled with variations in tobaccos.

One could use Gawith's Best Brown Flake for the medium flake, in which case the ribbon could be increased - ribbon promotes smokeability.
Red ribbon has a wonderful flavour (especially the current batch of C&D #525), bright has a slight edge but lifts the blend.
Your Turkish may not be the same as my Turkish, and you might tolerate a higher or lower proportion in any case (27% seems to be my standard for Balkans).
The cavendish is really the iffy part - toasted cavendish will add a dry Scottish taste, especially paired with Gawith flake. It also increases the smokiness, so you could use slightly less Latakia.
Regular unflavoured cavendish mutes the ribbon Virginias, which can be slightly increased in consequence.
A good fermented Cavendish, such as Cornell & Diehl's Red Virginia Cavendish #525V, is a wonderful product, but cannot be stored long - it goes off (but you could pop the tin into the icebox to postpone that).
You might prefer red ribbon, or bright ribbon - or you might want to mix (or heck, use McClelland's Virginia Woods (excellent product for that purpose), in which case decrease the cavendish.

I encourage experimentation, because while nothing from the past can be duplicated, the exact pleasure it yielded can well be recaptured.

Perique, or weird black flakes, if used, should in this case not be more than about 2.5%.

My choices are Latakia, Smyrna, flake, red ribbon, and dark cavendish.

The back of the hill said...

Oh, and do note two things:

1. Toasted Cavendish is the trade name for fire-cured Kentucky, so it is actually more like a Burley than a Virginia as far as its 'original' taste is concerned.

2. Other Cavendish tobaccos, if used, should be UNFLAVOURED - but a touch of Lakeland funkiness in the flake component is not necessarily a problem.

Anonymous said...

Good freaking lord, you live a ripe life!

Search This Blog


Important disclaimer or whatever: Because I am Dutch American, neurotic, and somewhere on the spectrum (Aspergers syndrome is quite common a...