Why smoke a pipe?

No one really knows why men smoke. Yet long before the discovery of tobacco, smoking had become the abiding joy of many peoples.

Since tobacco's discovery, smoking has truly become one of mankind's most pleasurable pastimes.

The modern smoker has three means of enjoying this universal practice: through cigarettes, cigars, and the pipe. And of these three, the pipe gives the smoker lasting pleasure and the greatest solace.

We are all aware that the pipe smoker belongs to a breed apart from other men. His pleasures are contemplation and relaxation; he does not rush, he is not nervous. His joys are the casual and meditative ones, those of the fireside, the easy chair, and the good book. The pipe stands as a symbol of this type of man, easily recognized by his even frame of mind, his unhurried approach to life's problems. It is almost always just such a man who chooses a pipe as his path to smoking enjoyment.

What gives a pipe this special position in the smoker's world? For one thing, a pipe is more than an instrument for smoking. It is also an object of beauty, usually made of finely finished rare briar. A pipe is agreeable to handle, to look at, and to hold. It elicits the respect that a finely crafted product deserves.

Moreover, a pipe must be filled, lighted, and smoked with reasonable care. The cigarette smoker, who hurriedly picks up a pipe at an odd moment, will fill it sloppily, light it unevenly, and smoke it too rapidly. The real pipe-smoker soon learns that pipe smoking is both an art and a science. The pipe responds to its owner with exactly the same treatment that it receives from him. The man who masters the techniques of pipe smoking is repaid by a satisfying smoke, a joy which he created for himself with his own hands.

The road to true pipe smoking pleasure is neither long nor hard. A good pipe properly filled with carefully selected tobaccos, and smoked with care and skill, will reward its owner with unmatched taste and aroma. The pipe smoker never seeks stimulation through inhaling. On the contrary, the very act of lighting the pipe and smoking it will take his mind off his troubles and induce a relaxed frame of mind.

~ From "Weber's Guide to Pipes and Pipe Smoking" written by Carl Weber in 1962.


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