Friday, January 7, 2011

The Pipes Are Calling

As William S. Burroughs once trance-channelled, "I can feel the heat closing in, I can feel them out there making their moves, setting up their devil doll stool pigeons." The enemy is at our door, boys, and it's time to circle the wagons.

Even as more and more Splenda-guzzlin' Facebook-addicted humans take one further step toward total assimilation by the Borg via these profoundly retarded robot cigarettes, and even as a bill for a statewide Kentucky smoking ban is being introduced, I'm doing my part to keep America real by going out and buying a pipe.

I've been pondering pipefulness for quite some time, having long been an admirer of Landa's deep-dish pipe in Inglorious Basterds, and by the traditional curved pipe associated with Sherlock Holmes. I prefer not to order an expensive pipe online, though, without having the opportunity to hold it in my hand and suck on it first. (What are you laughing at??)

So, I finally just plunked down the change for a $30 pipe to get me started on the road to Borkum Riff until I get around to procuring the calabash of my dreams. I confessed my ignorance of the pipely procedure to the gal at Cox's Smokeshop and she patiently trained me in the correct application of the filter, the cleaner, and the screen, like Pvt. Joker instructing Pvt. Pyle how to care for his weapon. When I saw those little golden metal screens, though, I said "ah, I remember these from my childhood!" and then she got really nervous. Chill out, lady, I'm just makin' a little joke here.

I've started off with a pack of Sir Walter Raleigh and so far, I'm enjoying the experience immensely. The Dobbsian pipe-puffin' lifestyle is perfect for a non-smoker (that's right, I still consider myself a non-smoker) such as myself - not only do you actually smoke less and smoke cheaper, you can sneak a puff here and a puff there without stirring up Imperial entanglements.

In fact, I went into a certain bar near and dear to my heart recently with a lit pipe in my mouth and nobody said a mumblin' word to me. I was prepared to lie and say "hey, relax, it's not lit" but it didn't even come to that. And pipes go out so quickly, you degenerate nicotine addicts can always steal a quick relight and puff in the restroom if you wanna. Life is good.

Of course, this by no means spells the end of my European snuff-huffing or my cigar-tasting. In fact, pipes are an ideal way to put those cigar butts to good salvage: save 'em and grind 'em up into little pieces, then put that in your pipe and smoke it.

- - JSH

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