Wednesday, May 17, 2017


Nearly five months ago I de-subscribed from a certain mailinglist and Facebook group because the pro-Trump batshit contingent vociferated about my undesirability and my general loathsomeness. Over the preceding four years I regretfully de-friended a number of people whose views I did not sympathize with, as those views became more irritatingly apparent.
Susan, now living overseas, had several times attempted to impress upon me that as a non-member of the tribe I just couldn't grasp certain eternal truths. Sometime last year she conclusively proved herself a racist.
And promptly got de-friended too.
Without regret.

In the Autumn of 2012, I quit the steering committee and the closed list of the organization. This was two years after I called it quits on a weekly protest, because of a crazy Russian woman and three poxxy East Bay blisters. Please note that the three poxxy blisters had drunk my coffee numerous times, just like others with whom I no longer associate.
You know, I regret having always bought the coffee.
I've soured considerably on those folks.

It is by that association with many of those individuals that I have also soured somewhat on the cause. It's still worthwhile, mostly, but many of the "true believers" and leaders are not.

For a text-driven group, some of them are remarkably dense.

Life is too short to waste any of it drinking coffee with many people.
One must be selective.

I am still a social creature. But a better one than before.

My calmness and equanimity are considerably improved since I finally made a complete break. Occasionally one of the individuals from that time with whom I am still in contact says something to get my dander up, but life is not about them anymore, and they have largely dis-associated themselves.
Their lives have changed too.

Don't worry, I have not become a crabby old anti-social grouch. I still like children, young ladies, people enjoying good food, plus wit, insight, and folks who live life operatically. Oh, and tits. Tits can be charming.

Why, even on my days off I tend to seek out the company of bipeds.
I saw several of them yesterday! I'll do the same today.

I hope I see schoolgirls eating French fries with Sriracha again.
That was so cute! And the Sriracha humanized them!

About the tits: unfortunately, half of humankind has them. That rather takes away from their uniqueness, and there is bound to be some repetition.
Even with such things one should be selective.

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


Social Social said...

Speaking of socializing with people: What is your opinion of people who smoke cigarettes? You rarely talk about them. Usually you are praising the qualities of pipe-smokers, or deriding the braindeadness of cigar-smokers, but you never tell us your opinion of cigarette smokers. By the way, you've mentioned a lot that you started smoking pipes and cigars at a young age; but how old were you when you tried your first cigarette?

The back of the hill said...

"how old were you when you tried your first cigarette?"

Eight or nine. Thought it was over-rated. Tried them again in my late teens.

Someone recently offered me a Treasurer (the pack sells for over forty dollars), I declined. Supposedly the best cigarette in the world.
But nothing could possibly be better than Sobranie straights (no filter) in the small white tin, Sobranie Imperial Russians, and Khedives (lovely Turkish ovals). The 555's in the yellow tin were also a nice cigarette.

Boyards were a wallop.

Anonymous said...

Why did you decline?

The back of the hill said...

No longer interested in cigarettes. Haven't been for many years.

Anonymous said...

Even Sobranie straights? Why not, if you recall them with such fondness?

The back of the hill said...

Moot point, as the Yenidje non-filters in the white tin are no longer made. The company was sold to Gallaghers in the eighties, is now owned by Japan Tobacco, and whatever is produced under that name not only isn't as good as it used to be, but is not available in the United States in any case.

Oriental cigarettes were mostly a Berkeley phase for me. That time is over.
And the world has changed.

One can no longer smoke in cafes.

Anonymous said...

So then why still smoke pipes and cigars, if you can't smoke them in cafes? Or are those allowed in cafes, and it's only anti-cigarette prejudice that forbids them in cafes?

You know what? Your whole attitudes towards cigarettes -- how you used to love them, and smoke Oriental ones in cafes, and now you have no interest -- could make a fascinating full post. I would totally read that post. Please? You write so beautifully.

The back of the hill said...

Pipes are in an entire aesthetic class by themselves, with multiple facets that appeal and enchant; cigars also have a polychromatic character. Cigarettes, especially Turkish (usually German, Dutch, Austrian, and English) and high quality Russian (again, not necessarily from Russia), had a charm that was augmented by time and place (cafes, for instance, or grand hotels in other places). But if one is forced out on to the street or into empty alleyways, the attraction fades, while pipes grow in magic. Cigars are a halfway house; easy, no challenge, no great character either.

Pipes have simply always offered me much more than any other form of smoke.

Cigarettes are what prompted the anti-tobacco rules, and will always be associated in my mind with the closing of doors and limitations of the world.

Cigars, nowadays, keep tobacconists in business, so they have some positive associations, still.

Pipes are what I've always preferred, however. The smell of good clean pipe tobacco (not the aromatics which are ninety percent of the market) has elements which clue in to the deepest centres of the brain. Memory is spurred and awakened by smells. Especially complex and evocative smells.

Anonymous said...

Can you post that whole comment as a post? Please? Thank you so much

Anonymous said...

Please? You've already put in the work of writing it. It should be more visible, not buried in this comment thread. THanks so much!

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