Wednesday, July 16, 2008
My history in smoking
There was a time, I can't remember if it was high school or early college, when I smoked cigars. I mean, how cool was that, a girl smoking cigars. Wow, the people I must have impressed. I can still taste the nasty things, dainty little cherry-flavored chick cigars, the smoking equivalent of Boone's Farm wine. Then later, sometime after college, I took up the pipe. That was somewhat more refined, and I had (still have) some feminine pipes, a little metal cloisonne one and a purple painted wooden one. Neither worked worth a damn, and I remember the amusement of my uncle, who smoked a pipe for real, trying to teach me how to keep the stupid things going.
Neither of these habits was long-lived, fortunately, but I thought of them the other day when I was doing research on a new garage sale purchase--a beautiful antique cigar humidor. I was attracted to it because it's a beautiful box, a dark oak with a tin lining and a removable filter that could be wetted to keep the cigars moist. When I started looking around, trying to discover its age (1890s to early 1900s), I was reminded of the subculture that has grown up around different smoking options.
One of the most interesting websites I discovered was one that sells new humidors but also refurbishes antique ones to modern standards of cigar preservation. They take beautiful boxes like the one I'm selling (and, of course, ones much fanicer, made out of beautiful, rare woods with inlays and metal adornments and fanciful shapes), remove the lining; clean and refinish the wood if necessary; reline it with Spanish cedar; and fit it with modern moisture control devices (a humidifier and hygrometer).
Perfect for people who buy $10 cigars. (For those smoking cherry-flavored, girly cigars, a different receptacle will do.)