Thursday, November 28, 2013

Vintage Ad (1925): Kelly-Springfield Tires


From the April 1925 issue of National Geographic Magazine, featuring a pipe-smoking golfer loading up his automobile.  Thanks to the Ear-Trumpet.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Well, look what I found...


I used to use Ohio Blue Tip matches for all my pipe-lighting needs many years ago, but then one day they simply vanished from the stores.  Since then, I have been using Diamond matches, and wondered whatever happened to the Blue Tips.  I read at some point that the Diamond company had bought the Ohio Blue Tip company and that was why the Ohio Blue Tip brand name had disappeared.

But here it is again.  Unfortunately, they had only this one box of strike-on-box matches (I prefer strike anywhere) that bears the old company logo.  The rest of the boxes had a picture of a bulldog(?!) on them.  The supermarket where I bought them still had their usual stock of "green" Diamond matches as well.

It was nice to be able to buy a box of Blue Tips again, even though these are the large "kitchen match" style and I usually use the smaller wooden matches for pipe lighting.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Pipe lore: Davy Crockett's bear

David Crockett had a pet bear that would sit over on the other side of the fireplace from him and smoke a pipe just like Crockett until bedtime.  He finally got so civilized that he took whooping cough and died from it.  Crockett never did forgive the preacher for refusing to give that a bear a Christian funeral.

--J. Frank Dobie
excerpt from "Bears Are Intelligent People"
from Old-Time Tales of Texas

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Vintage Ad (1931): Dunhill


In the early 1900s, Alfred Dunhill wanted to expand his business ventures into France, but the French tobacco industry had a legal monopoly on all things pipes and tobacco, so Dunhill couldn't sell his pipes there. Not to be deterred, he created his own line of men's accessories: clothing, pens, cologne, etc. He was so successful that he began selling these same accessories in his pipe stores in England.

So when you go into your local tobacco store (if they still exist) and you find not only pipes, cigars & tobacco but also chess sets, walking canes, and all sorts of other oddments, remember Alfred Dunhill.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Pipe Smoker (fictional): William Walter Wordsworth

William Walter Wordsworth is a fictional character from the novel/manga/anime series Trinity Blood.  This series, which began as a series of graphic novels, has--in my opinion--a somewhat preposterous plot but some great artwork and a very cool anti-hero who does not smoke a pipe and is therefore not a part of this post.

So, trying make a long story somewhat shorter, about 100 years in our future, humans tried to colonize Mars and found two different alien bacilli there.  Some humans injected themselves with one of these bacilli and were changed into the Methusela (as they call themselves), or as we would know them, vampires.  Four test-tube babies were the only ones to survive being injected with the other bacillus, which were actually nanomachines, which turned them into Crusniks.  Crusniks are another kind of vampire which can receive their necessary sustenance only by feeding on the blood of "regular" vampires.

There was a big war between humans and Methusela, followed by a very long cold war.  The story begins about 1,000 years in our future when the cold war is cooling down into a very uneasy peace, occasionally aggravated into flare-ups of violence by radicals on both sides. There are three major powers:  the Methusela, the Vatican (the Roman Catholic Church), and the Kingdom of Albion.

Wordsworth is a priest of the Roman Catholic Church, although the Church of 1,000 years in the future would be almost unrecognizeable to us in the present day.  He was a great intellectual prodigy from the University of Londinium who was framed by another human for an incident which resulted in the death of Wordsworth's fiancĂ©e and expelled.  He is currently a professor at the University of Rome, where he is also one of the founding members of the AX, a sort of secret group within the Church who work to quell violent uprisings.  Although a professor (and frequently called simply The Professor), he doesn't like to teach and prefers to do research and is an inventor, although many of his inventions have failed spectacularly, usually by exploding.  He is also very proficient in combat using a sword-cane.

I've included three illustrations of him here from all three adaptations.  The illustrations from the graphic novels are very elaborate, detailed and artistic.  Our first picture shows him sitting at his desk smoking a pipe that appears to be carved from a single knobby burl, stem and all (click to enlarge).


The next picture, from the manga, shows him with what looks like a very similar pipe.


The anime adaptation is quite different.  In contrast to the other two versions, the anime has been greatly simplified with much cleaner lines, probably to make it easier to animate.  The anime version of Wordsworth smokes a pipe that appears to be carved from a single block of some white material such as meerschaum, except for the bit which looks like it's a separate piece.

Wordsworth is almost never seen without his pipe.


Popeye demotivational poster