Thursday, September 30, 2010


The following story will be your first exposure to a new brand of adventurer, but this is chronologically at the end. So if you're reading the end, why do you want to go back and start from the beginning? First, I'm sure I'm not surprising anyone by telling you the hero rides off into the sunset. If you want to know what he rides, you'll read. Second, if you don't read, you'll miss what makes this adventurer different than any other. Mostly, he's a pipe smoker. Those of you who understand why that makes a difference don't need an explanation, and those who don't can easily find out by reading. One last thing, the hero is not yet named. His name will be decided in a contest at PipeChat, so visit that site for details. Ok, on with the epilogue. Happy reading.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Chopping Down the "Peace" Tree

An idea, brought to you by Solani Silver Flake in a Stanwell Bamboo Billiard.

Radical is the idea that mankind can obtain the understanding of cultural perspective intrinsic to itself for the purpose of living in unison. If these ideas are not cultivated into beliefs throughout the intellectual lifespan collectively, then they are just ideas bred by the design of an unabrasive society. I have not personally experienced any manifestation of the idea based on the hopes of the new age hippie. The ones who brandish peace signs in the form of two fingers thrown casually into the air. Peace is not a casual fleeting concept. Futility in peace is the same as futility in war. When pacifists put to action their specific breed of protest for the sake of peace, they in their actions are only waging war. Resistance and protest are not peaceful exploits. We take what we need, and the forceful nature by which we do so eliminates the hope that the understanding of peace can be recognized. If the men and women who are waging it seek to cultivate the rewards of it, the gains will be minimal and the cost high.

There is only one kind of peace that is attainable in this world, and that is the peace within one's self. This is the peace on which to expend energy and faith. There are few things that I will resign to about mankind as a whole, this is one of those things. We have to let societies do what societies do and forge our own armor to deflect the blades and arrows that stray. Never will man lay down their arms in the name of peace, not when assets, resources, and lives are at risk; not even when morality is at risk. In a peaceful world where man is left to his devices death, violence, and crime no matter how petty, can be the only derivative. Though this might seem a dark topic, it's brought me to some degree of enlightenment. I've been able to deliberately identify what turbulence is keeping me from my peace, and have since calmed the waves and slowed the churn. For those who have the bigger idea in mind, they first need to recognize that the more miraculous thing would be for all men to have their own peace. Collective peace is a prize that is made not to win, which is why it's so highly valued. It's hard not to hope when things are as they are.

Ignorance is a great platform for which ecumenical peace to stand on, because understanding is the means for an end. No revolution has been thwarted for the sake of peace, no transformation of government, nor people, nor policies have been conceived through clear and unrippled interpretation.

I find ways to consider how many times I've fought with myself and how the end result of each was the same; square one. I consider how I can dismiss the conflict and create harmony in the ripples that are created by living.

"Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable." John F. Kennedy.

Lessons learned under the hood, Part 1

On recent hot, hot, hot summer days, I have been squeezing myself under the hood of a vehicle that has no apparent will to live. It has been sweaty, sticky, muggy, messy, but it was all made at least slightly more tolerable by my pipe.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Pipe Tool: A fingers-on review

Some of you may have ready my ramblings about the new iPhone app Pipe Tool. Kevin at Pipes Magazine was kind enough to let me try it in exchange for a review. Well, that full review is up now. Hope you find it helpful.

Monday, July 5, 2010

There's an app for that?

Maybe it's just that we pipe smokers have become accustomed to relative obscurity. Granted, there are plenty of us on the Internet forums, or at least there seems to be. But it is unusual for us to be noticed by the so-called mainstream. That's why it's a little surprising when even we can say, as Apple has taught us to, "There's an app for that."

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Official SMOKER LAW, 1st Ed.

This is the first official edition of Smoker Law. It is a collection of rules to help guide smokers in their interactions with fellow smokers and those who do not partake in the leaf. It is our sincere hope that these rules will lead to a fuller enjoyment of all forms of tobacco. This list is not final, and further editions will be released as more laws are accumulated. Suggested additions may be submitted in the comments below.

Monday, May 17, 2010

The camaraderie of the pipe

It's been a few days since our SEM. For the uninitiated, that's a Special Emergency Meeting. Before you get excited, no, there wasn't an actual emergency. If there had been, it would have been an Emergency Meeting, like we had back when the tobacco tax scare hit. No, this was a Special Emergency Meeting, which basically means we needed an excuse to get together and smoke. Yes, I realize it was less than 24 hours after our regular pipe club meeting, but there really was a reason this time.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Travels of a Czech tool

Consider the Czech tool, the three-part device from Heaven. Its tamper, so necessary to keep a bowl burning. It's poker, helping us stir our ash and granting the flame access to lower leaf. It's scoop, helping us remove dottle from the heel and scrape down the walls. So many uses, and each prong of the tool necessary to the enjoyment of the hobby.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Give and Take and Give Again.

I have never really been much of the religious type. I don't believe in spirits that walk the Earth. I don't believe in aliens that visit the Earth. I believe that, here on Earth, there is the most powerful, caring, and sometimes devastating force. What I believe in is the individual. Personal convictions have given us what we have and put us where we are today. There are those who raise their hands and volunteer themselves to fight in wars, spread the word of God, or simply donate their time or assets. These people are what I put my faith in. Personal conviction is a power that few understand, and that many put themselves so entirely into that they'd stop at very little to see it realized. On Earth, that personal conviction can be found in abundance. It is a truth, though, that some mans' convictions inflict negative scores on my beliefs, yet my own doctrine drives me to look for the positive. Every human has a role in his world, and I put faith in that. Semblance of society is tainted with those who have struggled to realize this; the men who murder, steal, and rape. These are the men who try my own, and many others, adherence to personal beliefs. This is where the beliefs of many align. These men will be put to justice, either in this life or the next.

I don't make it difficult for myself to recognize good, regardless of what I may see broadcast on the news or written in the papers. I see generosity and the derivatives of generosity abounding in the community that we've established around our love of tobacco. We understand how to slow down and inventory our thoughts. We understand how to give with the faith that the recipient will pay it forward. We are the most generous people, and all we ask in return is a good conversation. This generosity is not to make any personal gain. I think it's more a showing of how a man can give what he has and still have something to show for it.

As I sat to have an evening smoke in a pipe that was gifted to me all I could think about is how I'd pay this forward, and it gave me my idea for my very first piper's blog.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

And now for something completely different...

It all started with Neil Patrick Harris, this little idea of mine. It started when his character, Barney Stnison, created the "Bro Code," which has since been turned into a book for sale at retailers everywhere. Then there came "Man Law," which, like the "Bro Code," is  a witty and insightful look into the relationships between men, renamed, however, to settle for accusations of copying while avoiding accusations of copy-write infringement. So today, I add only a small twist on this tried and true form of humor and introspection by introducing "Smoker Law."

Thursday, April 22, 2010

So if today is the fourth Thursday...

That's right, The Ozark Pipe Smokers have a rare fifth Thursday coming up and, therefore, a Fifth Thursday Meeting.
As with most fifth Thursdays, we do not have a heavily serious agenda, but there should be some fun. On the agenda are a well-postponed discussion of our annual slow-smoking contest, and I've got another fun exercise that should elicit a laugh or two, but I'll talk more about that this weekend.
On the smoking contest, we are hoping to build a schedule of events that will span more than one day. A two- or even three-day weekend might give people more reason to trek down to lowly northwest Arkansas and see the community they have seriously misjudged. My hope is that if we can plan a multiple-day event, we can count on the cooperation of some of the city agencies, like the Chambers of Commerce or Main Street Rogers.
Right now, we have our cornerstone event, the slow smoke, but we'd like to find more reasons for people to come here. The cigar smoke ring contest was also fun, and allowed us to extend the contest briefly, but I can't help thinking there is more we can do. More events will attract more people, and more people will attract more vendors, and more vendors will again attract more sellers. And with the right events, we could possibly put ourselves in the national pipe smoking spotlight, even to be in better position to host the International Pipe Smoking Competition.
So bring your ideas next Thursday or post them here. Any suggestions will help.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Tweener shapes

On an intellectual level, it should be easy to name the shapes. You can tick most of them off on your fingers, right? We'll start with the common billiard, and then it's wild cousin, the Dublin. We'll toss in the fraternal twins, Canadian and lovat. There's the bulldog and the rhodesian, the poker and the cherrywood. We can run through the food and drink shapes, the brandy and apple and tomato and acorn. Don't forget the blowfish and the calabash, the wild shapes on the fringes. I can't think of any more off the top of my hand, so let's consult the chart.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

In case you missed it ...

Our discussion at Thursday's meeting of The Ozark Pipe Smokers (after all the talk of fly fishing) revolved around the packing of pipes with tobacco. There was a wealth of information shared, and everyone marveled at the amount of research I had done. Of course I stole all the information from one well-outlined source.

A cautionary tale for smokers

Occam's Razor states that the simplest answer is usually true. But sometimes a simple explanation isn't as satisfying. At 9:50 p.m. Wednesday, this alert arrived in my email.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Anatomy of a makerover

Romeo's is backward. The front is in the back and the back is in the front. Well, not exactly. The middle is in the front and the front is in the middle. So I guess Romeo's is really inside out. It all happened late last night, and I'd be lying if I said it was easy.
The look says it all. Good work is always exhausting.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Pipe for Sale: Unsmoked Comoy's Spectrum

This is a fantastic specimen, an unsmoked Comoy's Spectrum billiard (Shape 186). It comes in a set with this handsome Comoy's latching case and the matching tamper. The blue coloring apparent in the photos is more subdued in normal room lighting, but under a flash, the blue becomes quite brilliant.

We are offering the pipe at a price of $250 $200, which includes shipping. Those buying the pipe in person will be charged a reduced price, as no shipping will be involved.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

TOPS real next meeting

Hopefully the Easter ham is helping you all forget the pain of learning TOPS was becoming a "top" club and the further pains of realizing you fell for an April Fool's joke. I could tell you that I regret doing that to you all, that I hate myself for putting you through it. That would be a lie, but I could tell you that.
So Thursday, April 8, The Ozark Pipe Smokers will definitely be smoking and shooting the bull at Romeo's. There's just a few things to remember before you show up.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

TOPS to take new direction

The Ozark Pipe Smokers will be reforming their club in a desire to go in a new direction. Beginning today, the club will no longer be dedicated to pipe smoking, but will instead be devoted to the children's toy after which the club is named. Everything from dreidels to battle tops will be on display and discussed at today's first meeting under our renewed purpose. We realize that there will be some pipe smokers disappointed by this decision, but we feel it is for the good of the group. As pipe smokers, the meetings were plagued with bitterness and animosity we have found is common to pipe smokers. We hope to see you all out with your favorite top of your youth.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Pipe for Sale: Paul Becker


This is obviously a new feature on the blog, but the staff at Romeo's wants to start offering some of their pipes online. This is the first.

What we have up for sale is a beautiful pipe by the German carver Paul Becker. It was lightly smoked (and not in the exaggerated eBay sense) and well cared for. It is being sold in clean, ready-to-smoke condition.

Taking the party online

I'll admit that I spend way too much time at Romeo's pipe shop. (And no, contrary to popular belief, I'm not associated with the shop, let alone the owner.) It's my second home, and maybe my third. My wife thinks I spend too much time there, but she also recognizes that I come home much happier than when I left. And while hanging out during business hours can bring you in contact with lots of enjoyable people, while you clear your tampers and pipe cleaners off the seat to make room.
It's still no comparison to the pipe club meetings, where you pack the room or fill a table or pile around an ash tray with people you look forward to seeing all month long. But you can't hang out all the time, can you?

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Retort from a Bulldog

"I'm a What? Hey! Who are you calling a "FAT PUPPY?!"

Confessions of a Billiard

Written by Jeff Neisler
"I really just need to get this off my chest and the only good reason is some psycho babble I once heard about confession bringing about healing … bla …. bla…bla. Anyway I’ve began to be completely annoyed by my owner’s constant need to bring new pipes into the rack.

Monday, March 22, 2010

The Never-Ending Journey

The great thing about the pipe smoking hobby is you can take it as far as you want. Most of us probably go too far but thats part of the fun. Some pipers get into the search for the "perfect pipe", others journey for a lifetime in search of the perfect tobacco, then there are the tamper collectors, and the pipe puffer who needs the perfect lighter for every occasion.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

With the emphasis on brotherhood

There's not a whole lot of value to a pipe club, right? I mean, you show up and do nothing but smoke and shoot the bull for a few hours. The city's problems don't get solved, let alone the world's. You swap stories and try new blends, but that doesn't help you live a long, happy life despite regular use of a life-shortening leaf.
Or does it?

Monday, March 15, 2010

Tobacco tratement

During our last club meeting many topics were touched upon, one of them was the the preservation of ones favorite blend, and what happens in those wonderful little tins over time. I'm no tobacco aficionado, but if it passed the sniff test it gets loaded. However, since joining the club I've learned a lot, tried a bunch of blends, started collecting pipes , and most importantly piqued my curiosity of the world of tobacco (especially the curing and aging).
Heeding Tom's raffling lure of some premo tobacco and trying to answer some of the questions raised, I did some research and here is the short story:

Saturday, March 13, 2010

The benefits of contributing

At Thursday's meeting, I announced an incentive to encourage my brothers and sisters of the briar to contribute to this humble blog. Between now and the next meeting of The Ozark Pipe Smokers, contributors will be entered into a drawing for an unopened pouch of Edgeworth Ready Rubbed.

In case you missed it ...

Smokers packed into the lounge at Romeo's Downtown Pipe & Tobacco Co., a nice mix of old friends and new. And amidst the talk of failed tobacco taxes and advanced fly fishing techniques, there was a lengthy conversation about cellaring and aging. While we understand our questions more clearly, we definitely didn't find any answers.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

A change in habit

Many men and women have turned to the pipe to escape the grasp of cigarettes. The path from one to the other, however, is long and windy and often doubles back on itself.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Pipe Club Preview

So once again we're preparing to gather, choosing the right pipes, the right tobacco, the right anecdotes. We are rapidly approaching the time each month we set aside time to meet to share leaf and lies with good smoke and better friends. And it seems like a lot has happened since the last time we met.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Did we do it? Looks like somebody did.

So despite our strong misgivings, our deep doubts, our unshakeable belief that the government will never listen to we few pipe smokers, we put our signatures on petitions and sent letters and called our elected officials, knowing deep in our hearts that nothing was going to change and that a 775 percent pipe tobacco tax hike was inevitable. We were right ... and wrong. Right in the action we took, right in the stand we made, right in coming together in brotherhood to fight against what we saw as unjust. We were just wrong about one thing.
We were wrong that it wouldn't work.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Some good news

During Saturday's St. Louis pipe show, I spoke with the gentlemen from Cornell & Diehl. I have no way to verify this, but they told me that HR 4439, the bill that threatens a 775% pipe tobacco tax increase, has come up twice before the Ways and Means Committee and both times was quickly dismissed as a waste of effort in light of more pressing matters. It looks like we have the glimmer of a hope. Everyone who is fighting this, keep up the good work. We might make it through to the other side.

Thoughts of St. Louis

I'm just back from the St. Louis pipe show. I have less money and more friends, which seems like a fair tradeoff. I'm also coming back with a lot of tobacco, some old favorites to stash away, some new blends to try, and an old favorite that has become a rarity.
Rather than tell you in great detail how great a time I had, because it seems only natural that a piper immersed in pipes and tobaccos would have a good time, I'd like to tell you about the people I met.
Pipe people, as a rule, are generous, friendly and welcoming. It is their distinct honor and pleasure to speak with you, not because of who you are or aren't, but really just for the conversation. They are there for the good time, which is also a time of relaxing, mental renewal and camaraderie. Of course, you're reading this because you're one of them, so you already know this.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

The pipe cleaner conspiracy

You know it's coming. It doesn't matter how good your pipe is or the quality of your tobacco. Sooner or later, you will get a gurgle. They say a good pipe will never gurgle, but they do. Properly drilled draft holes, properly aged briar, a solid cake around the bowl, these all help. But if you smoke your pipe, it will eventually gurgle. And if you're lucky enough to avoid that, you still need to clean the pipes, give them a quick swab after you smoke.
And then, one day, you find yourself with plenty of pipes, plenty of tobacco, lighters full and matches aplenty, and you think you're ready to light up. Until you reach for your pipe cleaners. Where those long, fuzzy swabs once were, you find only air. The pipe shop is still open, so you figure you'll run in real quick.
And then they have you.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Others joining in

I'm posting a link here to The Eager Beaver's Briar, where Justin Bain has posted an interview with Jeff Steinbock from Uhle's Tobacco Company in Wisconsin about the proposed pipe tobacco tax in H.R. 4439.
It does look like The Ozark Pipe Smokers and Steinbock are on the same page when he says:
Local groups, shops, etc. need to band together and fight, putting aside economic competition.
It's a good interview, one that doesn't pull any punches or make believe that a simple petition is going to change the voting outcome. Yes, I know TOPS is sending out a form letter, but that is only the start to help us present our position our representative.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

In case you thought you missed it ...

We had a terrific meeting of The Ozark Pipe Smokers, but it was only a small meeting. For whatever reason, it was a light turnout. We still had fun and enjoyed each other's company, but there were only a few of us. So we decided to hold off on all the goodies we had planned, including our discussion of cellaring techniques and the raffle of an unopened tin of Dunhill Early Morning Pipe to those who signed the Pipes Magazine petition against HR 4439. We'll pick those up during our March 11 meeting.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Pipe Club Preview

The Ozark Pipe Smokers will be meeting again Thursday, Feb. 11. All who bring donuts will be welcomed. All who don't bring donuts will also be welcomed, but do you really want to take the chance?

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Symbolic Gesture of the Week

Murry rubs out some Samuel Gawith's Best Brown Flake onto a printed copy of H.R. 4439.

The business at hand

After a productive meeting of The Ozark Pipe Smokers (as productive as a pipe club meeting can be), the club is ready to move forward with its opposition to H.R. 4439. This is posted here both as an informational tool for our members and as inspiration for clubs and other individuals with the same goal elsewhere in the United States.

Man check

Before we get to the important business covered at today's meeting, we have one bit of little business to get to: Who manned up and smoked Mixture No. 79?

Friday, February 5, 2010

Time to man up

I received a pouch of tobacco in the mail today. This is one I always wondered if I'd try. Frankly, I kind of wondered if I was man enough to smoke it. Well, the time has come to find out. Let's face it: This ain't just any tobacco. This is Mixture No. 79.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Pipe Ponderings: Waxing pathetic

(Author's note: The following has nothing to do with tobacco, save that it was written with a lit pipe within reach.)

As I'm writing, I'm lighting my first bowl ever of Carter Hall. It is, of course, packed in my trusty Kaywoodie Gold. It was billed to me as an over-the-counter burley with a nice Virginia backing. Opening the bag a friend sent me, which arrived just today, I smell plenty of Virginia.
But that's not why I'm writing today. Today I'm writing because of the other package that arrived in the mail today, the one I don't want anyone to tell my wife about.

Rescheduled emergency meeting

The best laid schemes o' mice an' men fell short last Saturday, but we're going to try it again.
The weather forecast looks much more promising. A high of 39 degrees, partly cloudy, with only a 10 percent chance of precipitation. Let's hope it stays that way.
For anyone in the northwest Arkansas area, The Ozark Pipe Smokers will be meeting at noon Saturday, Feb. 6, at Romeo's Downtown Pipe & Tobacco Co., 111 S. Second St. in Rogers.
The purpose of the meeting is to discuss the possible tax increase on pipe tobacco. Come with any ideas how we, as a club, can affect the tax on a local level, any special talents you would be willing to donate to the cause, and a desire to join as a group to maintain our current tax levels. Our discussions will hopefully influence discussions with our representatives to the U.S. House and Senate.
Attendance is not limited club members. Anyone is welcomed to join us for the meeting, where we will smoke our pipes and wrack our brains.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Emergency meeting

For anyone in the northwest Arkansas area, The Ozark Pipe Smokers will be meeting at noon Saturday, Jan. 30, at Romeo's Downtown Pipe & Tobacco Co., 111 S. Second St. in Rogers.
The purpose of the meeting is to discuss the possible tax increase on pipe tobacco. Come with any ideas how we, as a club, can affect the tax on a local level, any special talents you would be willing to donate to the cause, and a desire to join as a group to maintain our current tax levels. Our discussions will hopefully influence discussions with our representatives to the U.S. House and Senate.
Attendance is not limited club members. Anyone is welcomed to join us for the meeting, where we will smoke our pipes and wrack our brains.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

The other shoe

Anyone paying attention to recent tobacco tax decisions knew this day was coming. Roll-your-own tobacco companies avoided last year's taxes by relabeling their product as pipe tobacco. I laughed when I noticed pipe tobacco popping up that was flavored with "mint," which I, when I was a cigarette smoker, called menthol. I'm not laughing anymore.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

What I'm Doing Wrong

(Author's note: "What I'm Doing Wrong" will be an ongoing series, as there appears no immediate danger that I will run out of things to chronicle.)

Today's word is "tongue bite." Yes, that's two words. If you're experiencing it, what does it matter how many words it has? And I've had it almost steady for a week.

Friday, January 15, 2010

In case you missed it ...

The discussion of pipe cleaning techniques planned for last night's meeting of The Ozark Pipe Smokers was better than expected, thanks to Vice President Jeff, who prepared a demonstration.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

What I'm Doing Wrong

(Author's note: "What I'm Doing Wrong" will be an ongoing series, as there appears no immediate danger that I will run out of things to chronicle.)

There are flavors in tobacco beyond the obvious one. Sure, there's this single overarching taste and aroma, but tobaccos (good ones, anyway) also have subtle undertones. At least, that's what I'm told.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Ladies and gentlemen, step right up to marvel at the cure for the ages!

Have you ever wondered why you can't be smarter? Of course, if you're not already smart, you won't find an answer. It's nature's Catch 22. That's some catch, that catch 22. It's the best there is. But I digress, which, if you are still wondering why you aren't smarter, is a word you probably won't be able to look up in the dictionary. The symptoms of this disorder are an inability to spell your own name, anxiety trying to figure out how to dial a phone number, and complete bewilderment about why, even in your adult life, you still don't understand what people mean when they keep talking about "birds and bees." Ladies and gentlemen, I have your answer. But first ...
Have you ever wondered why you aren't more manly? Of course, if you're not already manly, then you don't have the guts to ever man up. It's nature's Catch 22. That's some catch, that catch 22. It's the best there is. But even though I'm making fun of you, you won't have the fortitude to do anything but flinch at my literary assault. The symptoms of this disorder are an inability to raise your voice, even if you are speaking under a jet turbine, anxiety in making a fist, even if you have no intention of swinging it, and complete bewilderment about why John Wayne, even in his death, is still the manliest man in the world, followed closely by Chuck Norris. Ladies and gentlemen, I have your answer.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Smoking and sharing

The table in the middle of the small smoking room seems to fill faster than the seats around it, full of tins and bags and pipes and lighters. Invariably on the second and fifth Thursday of each month, I occupy one of the seats around the table. When the other seats fill up, the pipe club meeting begins.
Experiences may vary from club to club, and I can speak only to mine (The Ozark Pipe Smokers), but the spirit of camaraderie quickly takes over as tobaccos get passed around, some brought specifically by request or with a particular taster in mind, others simply because the group will enjoy them. Thanks to such meetings, I had my first taste of too many tobaccos to count, but I'll try to name a few: Peter Stokkebye's Luxury Navy Flake, Frog Morton on the Town, McClelland Christmas Cheer (I think it was 2006), home-blended aromatics, Gawith's Brown No. 4.
Such gatherings are a social setting designed to allow members and guests to share their own pipe smoking experience with others. They are essentially an expansion of the front porch days of long ago, where men sat and smoked and shot the breeze. It is a healthy interaction that has become increasingly rare in modern society, and what are pipe smokers if not nostalgic to some degree for those things disappearing from the past.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

So you've picked a pipe ...

In your hands is a pipe that feels like it belongs there, looks more beautiful than you thought you could imagine, and can't wait to hold burning leaves so you can inhale the smoke from its stem. It's a good first step. Step 2, well, here's the thing ...

Friday, January 1, 2010


This being this blog's first post on this first day of the first year of the second decade of the second millennium (so it's not a perfect analogy), I thought it fitting to discuss the very important step of buying a first pipe.
There are as many factors that go into selecting a first pipe as there are pipes, and there are as many correct responses as there are pipe smokers. And while all of those factors can come into play during the selection of a pipe, first or otherwise, there are a few generalities we can address that will apply to everyone.