Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Vintage Ad (1942): Friends tobacco

A very small reproduction that I captured from eBay at some time in the past. Captions read (to the best of my ability):

All you pipe lads, Ahoy! [I think]
Here's a smoke you'll enjoy!

Not a trace of tongue-bite,
This new mixture is right!

Give your pet pipe a lift--
At a dime, it's a gift!

Ask for Friends, don't forget!
Friends, you'll like it best yet!

Hmmm...yes, well, perhaps advertising poetry has come a long way since then.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Featured Pipe Smoker: A. A. Milne

Alan Alexander Milne (1882-1956)

"One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries."

British author of plays, novels and poetry, he is best known for being the creator of Winnie-the-Pooh.

As for pipe smoking, here is an excerpt that I found some time ago which someone had posted on an online forum. It is from a newspaper article titled "Not That it Matters," from 1920.
However, it is the pipe rather than the tobacco which marks him as belonging to this particular school. He pins his faith, not so much to its labor saving devices as to the white spot outside, the white spot of an otherwise aimless life. This tells the world that it is one of the pipes. Never was an announcement more superfluous.

...Whereas men of an older school, like myself, smoke for the pleasure of smoking, men of this school smoke for the pleasure of pipe-owning--of selecting which of their many white-spotted pipes they will fill with their specially blended tobacco, of filling the one so chosen, of lighting it, of taking it from the mouth to gaze lovingly at the white spot and thus letting it go out, of lighting it again and letting it go out again, of polishing it up with their own special polisher and putting it to bed, and then the pleasure of beginning all over again with another white-spotted one. They are not so much pipe smokers as pipe keepers; and to have spoken as I did just now of their owning pipes was wrong, for it is they who are in bondage to the white spot.

...You may be excused for feeling after the first pipe that the joys of smoking have been rated too high, and for trying to extract your pleasure from the polish on the pipe's surface, the pride of possessing a special mixture of your own, and such-like matters, rather than from the actual inspiration and expiration of smoke. In the same way a man not fond of reading may find delight in a library of well-bound books. They are pleasant to handle, pleasant to talk about, pleasant to show to friends.But it is the man without the library of well-bound books who generally does most of the reading.

So I feel that it is we of the older school that do most of the smoking. We smoke unconsciously while we are doing other things; they try, but not very successfully, to do other things while they are consciously smoking. No doubt they despise us, and tell themselves that we are not real smokers, but I fancy they feel a little uneasy sometimes. For my young friends are always trying to persuade me to join their school, to become one of the white-spotted ones.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Vintage Ad: (1923) MM Pipes

No information on this one, except that I noted it was from 1923.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Vintage Ad: Philip Morris English Mixture and Cut Plug (1911)

I thought I'd get back to having a little more activity on the old blog and start posting vintage ads and some featured pipe smokers again, so here's the oldest I currently have in my "found somewhere on the internet" collection.

I will attempt to include any information on these ads that I can, rather than just posting them as found. I was not able to find any information about the specific blends advertised here, but I was able to determine that this ad appeared on page 125 of volume XLIV (July-December 1911) of The American Review of Reviews. Click to link to go to Google Books, where you can read or download the entire volume (and many others) for free.

The message of this ad was that the tobacco was good enough to pay $2.00 per pound for, which adjusted for inflation would be about $46 per pound today, which I think is a little more expensive than most bulk blends.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Pipe lore: No Smoking

[Albert Lewis, C. S. Lewis' father] was a master of the anecdote, a fund of improbable stories, many of which for him epitomized the tragicomedy of what it meant to be Irish. One of the more bizarre 'wheezes' (as he habitually termed these stories and observations) concerned an occasion when he was travelling in an old-fashioned train of the kind which had no corridor, so that the passengers were imprisoned in their compartments for as long as the train was moving. He was not alone in the compartment. He found himself opposite one other character, a respectable-looking farmer in a tweed suit whose agitated manner was to be explained by the demands of nature. When the train had rattled on for a further few miles, and showed no signs of stopping at a station where a lavatory might be available, the gentleman pulled down his trousers, squatted on the floor of the railway carriage and defecated. When this operation was complete, and the gentleman, fully clothed, was once more seated opposite Albert Lewis, the smell in the compartment was so powerful as to be almost nauseating. To vary, if not to drown the odour, Albert Lewis got a pipe from his pocket and began to light it. But at that point the stranger opposite, who had not spoken one word the entire journey, leaned forward and censoriously tapped a sign on the window which read NO SMOKING. For C. S. Lewis, this 'wheeze' of his father's always enshrined in some insane way a truth about Northern Ireland and what it was like to live there.
--A.N. Wilson
from C.S. Lewis: A Biography

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Pipe lore: Slow talker Eero Saarinen

Eero Saarinen was a Finnish architect who lived from 1910-61.
Saarinen, an exceptionally slow talker, was being interviewed for a television program. The allotted time was rapidly running out, and the anxious interviewer ventured to ask Saarinen if he could speak just a little faster. "No, sir," replied the architect, casually lighting up his pipe. "But," he continued, more slowly than ever, "I could say less."
Compare to Philip Marlowe in thoughtful when you are not thinking.