About three years ago I took up pipe smoking in earnest. I had been smoking a pipe with occasional opportunity since when I was with a few friends, every night around midnight my freshman year of college.
Now I don’t get back to the states but once every three years or so, and thus my dental hygienist was a bit surprised at what she saw. Knowing what I do for a living she said, “I’m really surprised at the amount of stain I see in here. It almost looks like smokers stain, but I assume it must be coffee.”
Nope, it’s smoke.
This, well, I’m not sure she had a box to put smoking in. And now I’m personally out of her missionary box and in some “other” box. Can’t win them all.
The reasons I have continued smoking a pipe are many. But here are a few in no real order.
Email will someday be the death of me. But you know what makes doing email really shockingly bearable? Headphones with loud music and great tobacco in a big pipe. Suddenly I’m dining instead of just responding to another organizational email about which I couldn’t possibly care less.
Playing outside with my kids is awesome. But I do wary quickly. In extreme heat or cold this is intensified. A pipe makes me the one encouraging them to stay outside, “Just until daddy is done.”
William Makepeace Thackeray said, "The pipe draws wisdom from the lips of the philosopher, and shuts up the mouth of the foolish: it generates a style of conversation, contemplative, thoughtful, benevolent, and unaffected.” I firmly believe the pipe is helpful in shutting my mouth.
Men need something else between them. Maybe this is a modern American thing, but we can’t get together just to talk. Well, we can. But only if we tell each other it’s actually to enjoy a pipe, or a beer, or something of the sort.
I smoke a pipe because I thoroughly enjoy it. And as a believer, I not only have the freedom to do so, but I can even enjoy it to the glory of the Lord.