Friday, 11 October 2013
by James Leavey
It was about three o'clock in the afternoon, with the sun shining through the windows of Grafton Street's bars.
I was wearing my weathered dark blue suit, with a dark blue shirt, tie, black brogues, and a pair of light brown socks embroidered with 'Piss off! I'm smoking an Havana'.
If it wasn't for the socks and the aroma from my Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure No.2, Dublin's anti-smoking twiddly-twats would have barely noticed.
But their wrinkled noses indicated they had registered my passing en route to The DCE.
At ground level a light went on in the tiny brains of their anally-retentive cronies. They were crawling through the gutters looking for discarded cigarette and cigar butts to be used as evidence of just how thoughtless their betters (i.e. considerate, unassuming, law-abiding cigar smokers like me) are.
Not that I gave a flying fuck. I was everything the well-dressed professional cigar smoker ought to be. I was calling on Mr Guy Hancock and almost a million Euros worth of prime Cuban tobacco, smokers' accessories and fine booze.
On the way downtown I had stopped for some light refreshment at several bars, i.e. just the pints of Guinness without my usual The Wild Geese Irish whiskey chasers. Thought I'd leave the best for the last.
Just before I entered The DCE's cigar aficionado's haven, an under-brained, over-opinionated, poncy, anti-smoking prick grabbed my arm and grunted, 'Those stinky things will kill you almost as quick as they murder passive smokers like me.'
I removed his grasping claw, grabbed his throat and growled, 'If you're a passive smoker why don't you shut up and be passive. Even better, fuck off and leave me alone before I burn a hole into your thick puritanical skull and let a little air and sense into it.'
Then I let the spluttering bastard go and took a long puff of the excellent Havana I was enjoying, until Mr Twiddly-Twat rudely interrupted me, and exhaled, 'As for the passive smoking, dummy, there has never been any hard scientific evidence that exhaled tobacco smoke causes cancer. But that hasn't stopped the born-again puritans and grasping insurance companies and politicians of the world giving smokers a hard time.
'Now open your big furry ears and listen carefully:
'We will all end up sleeping the Big Sleep, except in my case there'll be a huge smile on my face for having lived a long life to the full. Sad feckers like you will be lying there wishing they'd done the same before it was too late.
'And if you ever lay your slimy hands on me again you will be sleeping permanently, sooner rather than later.'
Tuesday, 19 February 2013
Electronic perfumed cigars? Lighten up!
by James Leavey
There are strong signs that Ireland is at last witnessing the green shoots of recovery after the fall of the Celtic Tiger.
Or maybe it's just the shamrock growers getting ready for St Patrick's Day (March 17 – you heathens!).
Whatever. To me, it's just another great excuse to celebrate life with a fine cigar.
Talking of which, a fellow nicotine lover recently asked me why you rarely see a priest in an Irish cigar shop.
'That's because nobody under the age of 18 is allowed in,' I told him.
Talking of feckin' chancers, some of those shady companies trading in electronic cigarettes are thinking about extending their range to include perfumed electronic ciggies, and, God Help Us and Save Us, electronic fucking cigars.
Now here's the thing...it turns out these electronic devices that appear to simulate a smoke are more dangerous than the real thing. It's that liquid nicotine they use to suck in smokers.
Besides, any tobacco that needs the addition of another flavour is, in my opinion, not worth igniting.
That includes those cheap cigarillos flavoured with all kinds of noisome shite.
Think about it...if the tobacco in a cigar is good it doesn't need enhancing or ruining with something else.
And as most of the flavours suggested for electronic puffs or any other electronic alternative tobacco products, is sweet...they may appeal to young idiot potential smokers who have already been conned into serious boozing via alco-fucking-pops.
The fact is that most of those companies who have leapt onto the anti-smoking bandwagon don't actually want their customers to stop smoking. They just want them to try and quit, and with this in mind sell them a piece of crap at vastly inflated prices.
It's cheaper and far better to smoke less by smoking better – so maybe it's time to switch to the occasional premium Havana instead of chain-smoking cheap tobacco.
Meanwhile, the anti-smoking lobby want to take over the smoking market but don't seem to be too bothered – unlike the tobacco companies they are trying to take down – to produce alternative smoking products that are actually safe to use.
As for electronic cigars...maybe they should only produce very wide girth, long versions into which they can insert a couple of AA batteries, turn them into vibrators, and stick them up their arse.
Now, for those of you who are serious dedicated cigar lovers like myself, may I suggest you turn your attention to some of the new cigars on the market and currently available from The DCE in Dublin, especially the Don Antonio premium long filler Dominican brand which comes in three tubed sizes: the Churchill, the Lonsdale, and, my absolute favourite, the delightfully smooth and more-ish Don Antonio Robusto.
And the great thing is, it doesn't need batteries.
Friday, 15 February 2013
Just in the middle my weekly rummage through the humidor (indulging in my tobacco sniffing fetish) and have come across some amazing looking Montecristo Edmundos.
There are a couple of boxes in dated 2011 factory code TAU NOV 11. Nice oily wrappers already showing signs of bloom/plume (see above). The aroma is slightly tannic. In my opinion although ready to smoke now these boxes are perfect for setting aside and ageing in your humidor.
And stashed in the back a box of from 2009. The Edmundo being a popular cigar in our store it is surprising enough to come across boxes with any age. Factory code MUA MAR 09. The aroma is wheaty and the wrappers are smooth with a silky sheen with a slight dusting of bloom/plume.
Going for a smoke tonight, I've worked hard this week (seriously!) I think I deserve one of these.
Paul "Your friendly neighbourhood cigar pusher" Murphy
Friday, 11 January 2013
by James LeaveyWhere angels fear to readThe other day I made the mistake of going hunting for some rolling nicotine for The Creature Who Must Be Obeyed a.k.a. the beloved wife, in a British supermarket instead of my usual specialist tobacco shop in Dublin.
That'll teach me.
Stepped up to the counter where an indifferent young female sales twit was yawning in front of an anonymous shuttered cupboard that resembled something out of an Ann Summers sex shop.
'Do you sell tobacco?' I bellowed, in an attempt at waking the twit to do what presumably she was being paid for.
She barely glanced at me. 'That's for me to know,' she muttered, 'and you to find out.'
'Don't strain your tiny brain on my account,' I replied. 'I'm only one of those rare customers standing here with folding money and not the usual plastic you're used to. I could easily spend it elsewhere.
'Now, open your beady eyes, switch on what's left of your demented grey matter and read my fucking lips: what exactly do you have on sale?'
Disgruntled, and desperate to get back to her slumbers, the twit looked at the ceiling and the long queue of patient smokers behind me, some of whom were losing the will to live, and said, languidly pointing to a wall 10 feet away, 'There's a list over there.'
I crashed my empty shopping basket (I'd only picked it up out of habit) on the counter in front of her and said, 'Don't even think about the next customer. As if. I'll be right back.'
Then I strolled to the wall, where, hanging with the aid of a bit of Blue tack was an A5 sheet of white paper listing various types of tobacco, in no particular order, printed in 2 point Times New Roman italics.
I then strolled, at a snail's pace, back to the front of the queue, ignoring the stares and muttering.
'I can't read that bloody list for I haven't got me reading glasses or a microscope. Please read it for me, if you can.'
The twit smiled and snarled, 'Not allowed to. That's the law.'
'Well, that's fine,' I responded, resting my arms on the counter and spotlighting her deliberate indifference with a full hard stare that would melt the bollocks off a donkey.
'Then you can call the manager and get him – or God Help Us – another useless object like you, you apathetic unhelpful mooning gobshite – to read it nice and slowly for me. And when we're through, and only then, you can do the same for all the poor sods behind me who have had enough of your fucking rudeness.
'And don't be in a hurry. I've got all day.'