February 20th is International Pipe-Smoking Day–
but you knew that already.
After lighting up, I swam away from the ruined vessel as it broke apart on the reef, borne on currents of joyful desperation for over 40 minutes while, once again, my most noble ideals vanished into thin air around me.
Luckily, the bowl was well packed and the pounding surf was not able to separate me from my lifeline, which smoldered on in the midst of the cataclysm. This was fortuitous, since I had only two matches and a third re-light could have meant a watery grave…
What did you do on this auspicious evening of global brotherhood and kapnismology?
The trial by fire tonight is Old Atlantean English Mix.
I’m smoking it in a full briar Churchwarden, somewhat Dispensational in theology but a reasonable chalice nonetheless.
Upon applying flame to the offering, the tobacco arches upwards in excited expectation, like a love-stricken female. The first several draws are full, rich, patrician puffs which dissipate slowly into a thinning financial atmosphere. The bowl smolders evenly, a room note of Baroque splendor mingled with late-romantic literary bravado becoming pronounced. The smoke is understated yet extroverted—an oxymoronic haze of blue reverie—borne on unseen currents of doubt. Atlantean Mix smokes well, philanthropically in fact, and sincerely wants to engage the smoker’s meditation but lack of money and self-assurance can call for steady puffing to keep it alight. Grace notes and triplets of Mohammedan Latakia begin to play subtle counterpoint to the Colonial Virginias at this phase. Byzantine rebels begin rising up against the Ottoman oppressor as the smoke burns lower in the bowl, to tragic memories of Armenian massacres and minor movements by Khatchaturian.
The room note is intense, slightly dissonant here, but willing to trust in the sovereign providence of an Almighty God. Towards the bottom third of the bowl, a surprising shift occurs; the Mediterranean memories begin to dialectically synthesize new fragrances of nicotine-laden torpor, irrespective of the geological timeline. Now, deep into the bowl, Atlantean Mix begins to yield up her stratigraphic secrets. Uniformitarian preconceptions burn away, leaving only fossilized remnants of antediluvian depravity. The tobacco is now smoldering into pockets of Pre-Cambrian coal, releasing moans of the non-elect who perished in the flood. Deeper still, the bowl is now murmuring trilobite dreams, singing softly of Edenic mornings in the green glory of the unfallen garden. Just before going out, Atlantean English speaks in glossolalian syllables to the smoker’s friends and family (both those present and the dearly departed).
All in all, I recommend Atlantean English Mix –
but be forewarned; this is a serious smoke. You are in for an implosion of the hermeneutic dimension – DEFINITELY an acquired taste. Pack yourself a judicious bowl and HAPPY SMOKING to you.
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