My father smoked only cigarettes. I can recall the day when he announced he was going to quit. I was twelve years old at the time. As far I could ever tell, his staunch and determined Cold Turkey approach worked perfectly. I never saw him smoke, or sensed he had been smoking again ever since. It never occurred to me to smoke cigarettes, and I never have (tried it once or twice but, as the saying holds, didn’t inhale). But thinking back, I suppose it was my awareness of his old habit that kept me in low profile mode when I decided to become a pipe smoker at seventeen (I learned the truth). Though I never tried to hide it, there was always a walk outside and a subsequent pack and light, out of sight.
But in today’s world, it’s refreshing to hear that pipe smoking dads are counseling their not so young’uns in the ways of the briar and bowl. Perhaps this is what kept the legacy blends so popular to this day. Even though there may not have been a direct corollary to father and son tobacco habits and preferences, the fact that dad smoked Captain Black and it smelled great, or Uncle Joe always had bowl of Granger and a gleam in his eye, has had sons and nephews reminiscing to this day. Even if their personal tastes lead them away from the classics, there’s a soft spot for the memory.
I’ve always been particularly fascinated by the era of the 1930′s and 40s, especially its photos, films, advertisements and memorabilia. It’s like being able to peer through the window of my father’s eyes to ponder and enjoy what he might have seen, given the opportunity. To me it represents an era before my birth no too far removed from relatability. It was a time when the causes and consequences of World War made life sobering. But a catchy phrase, with a picture of a classy dame enjoying a whiff of Half and Half from a passing bon vivant, jumping out of the latest issue of Life Magazine, seemed to make the black and white world a bit more colorful.
So in honor of passing Dads everywhere, here’s a few of my favorite tag lines from tobacco ads of yore:
He’s YOUR man, give him the BEST. PHILLIP MORRIS presents the pipe tobaccos HE CAN INHALE! - Revelation and Bond Street
I LOVE HIM when he smokes a KAYWOODIE – for peace of mind smoke a KAYWOODIE!
He scores high … he’s got P.A.* PA* means PIPE APPEAL and PRINCE ALBERT – THE NATIONAL JOY SMOKE!
m-m-m-m-m-m-m somebody’s smoking HALFAND HALF …confidential: FOR MARRIED MEN ONLY – your better half will love the aroma of HALF AND HALF – A CARGO OF CONTENTMENT IN THE BOWL OF ANY PIPE! -The SAFE Pipe Tobacco- HALF AND HALF makes ONE SWELL SMOKE!
How do YOU spell ecconomy – economy – econnomy? As a pipe smoker you spell it carefully and slowly – T-H-R-E-E N-U-N-S. Cunningly cut, each ounce lasts longer, saves you money. Not without good reason has it been called ‘THE TOBACCO OF CURIOUS CUT’ … Three Nuns Original – THE VICAR’S CHOICE!
LEAD WOMEN AROUND BY THE NOSE! – Flying Dutchman
And a rare endorsement for the long reigning leader of legend … “Next to losing, what I hate most is running out of CAPTAIN BLACK” – that’s why you’ll find Captain Black wherever Billy Martin goes. So join the Yankee’s number one with America’s number one selling pipe tobacco…you can’t lose!
So Happy Dad Day to all you pipe smoking WINNERS out there!!