Wednesday, December 29, 2021


At this moment I am looking speculatively at an unopened tin of McClelland Navy Cavendish from 1996. It is slightly swollen from ferment and age, and would probably be a marvelous tobacco to smoke. Do I open it? Or do I wait for a more opportune occasion? I am of several minds. The ideal accompaniment for such a product would be strong tea. Perhaps a slice of fruitcake beforehand. While wrapped in a warm blanket because it's beastly could outside.
And reading a good book (Sforno on Pirkei Avot, for example).

Smoking is not permitted in this apartment.
My apartment mate would object.

Tea, fruitcake, and a book. Plus warmth. These are key concepts.

It is manifestly undoable to set up on the sidewalk outside with a roaring trashcan fire and a comfortable folding chair plus a small table on which to have the mug of tea and an ashtray. The local authorities would object, and in this city concerned earthmothers would make it a point to come up and complian that I was ruining their lungs.
And I should think about the children!
My turkey vulture would have no problem with that, and would scope them out for fatty thighs. He has a thing about fatty thighs, precisely like in this photograph he has affection for McClellands fine pipe tobacco.

McClelland Tobacco Co.

"With this tobacco, we reintroduce the smoker to the traditional Navy Cavendish, pressed in cakes and aged naturally with dark Jamaican rum to achieve its rich depth of flavor, color and aroma."

The rum is not really noticeable, it unifies flavours rather than to contributing any of its own. Short brown flakes that rub out crumbly for the bowl, and a pleasant fresh sweetness at first light. The taste is not overly complex or full, the darkness is deceiving (it was the Rum soak that had made it appear darker than it actually would have been).
There is a faint hint of cookie in the fume.

I fail to see the connection between pipe tobacco and children OR fatty thighs (presumably of elderly duffers who would only need a gentle clop on the back of their heads to render them "harvestable") that Sydney Fylbert (the turkey vulture above) fixates upon. Very few little kiddie-winkies nowadays smoke pipes, and as far as I know the elderly mostly have scrawny gams, all tough, stringy and fishlike. Possibly he intends to lure me closer with that tin of nicely aged Navy Cavendish, and then whack!

I think I can survive the assault of a small bird.
See, I've got leverage and resilience.
I am a tough old cock.

It's that diet rich in tea, fruitcake, heavy books, and tobacco.
I just need that warm blanket and a raging fire.
Just forget about fatty thighs.
A hint of cookies.


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