It was not my intention to write a post today. Busy getting ready for friends coming over for corned beef and cabbage tonight, that sort of thing. Then my wife sent me to the convenience store to buy rye bread, and the man in front of me at the checkout was buying - so help me, I'm not making this up - a pineapple flavored cigar.
This is not about the fact that I'm not a smoker. If it were, the point would be that the man was buying a cigar. But the point is not that the man was buying a cigar. The point is the man was buying A FRIGGIN' PINEAPPLE FLAVORED CIGAR!
My curiosity was now aroused: what started someone thinking how great it would be if the taste of cigar tobacco were combined with the taste of pineapple? Was this some adult version of the bored kids at cook outs who think it would be a great idea to combine Coca-Cola and coleslaw, or was there more to it than that?
Once home, Google led me to a couple of on-line cigar community bulletin boards. On one, the pineapple smoking experience was described thus: "a dazzling mélange of artificial pineapple, burning rubber, stale urine and 11 year old Tahitian vanilla assaulted my senses and left them bruised, battered and befuddled in a clump on the floor." ( http://www.cigartrends.com/viewtopic.php?t=63 ) A posting in the other offered this: "[The cigar manufacturer] has to flavor their cigars because they use such a low grade tobacco. You're basically puffing on stems, paper, and sometimes woodchips...Why not just eat a piece of chocolate?" ( http://forums.cigaraficionado.com/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/6346086/m/231105614 )
Reading the experts, I felt positively smug enjoying the chocolate-covered raspberry ring gels I'd bought along with the rye bread.
Added Note 1: A couple of posts ago I wrote about one of my students, the one whose creativity in overcoming cramped exam conditions left me fascinated and just a bit envious. I recently received an e-mail from her. A project she entered into a lighting design competition won her second place and $1500. How about that?
Added Note 2: Encouraged by the positive e-mails I've received from kind readers, I've added the ability topost responses and comments here. Your thoughts have always been welcome; hopefully this will make sharing them a little easier.