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From the Man Chair - You Say You Want A Resolution

Posted: 2011-01-05

  Hence embedded in the divine and righteous mobile Man Chair once again and just diggin' the hell out of a Vudu robusto, I've decided to throw my two cents into the whole new year resolution thing.

They're stupid and a colossal waste of time.

Really. If they worked, I'd look like George Clooney, be the talent scout for the annual Hooters calendar, and be able to shoot $100 bills out of my butt. Instead, I look more like Rosemary Clooney, spend my time smoking cigars and writing this goofy shit, and you don't want to know what shoots out of my butt. (Just ask my wife.)

I think most folks do it all wrong. They go into the resolution department with the idea of doing something they really don't want to do. It may sound like it, but if it was a total positive, they'd just do it and wouldn't need a new page on the calendar to make it happen. I say, resolve what you know.

So, what would an El Freako resolution declaration look like?

I resolve to smoke more of these Vudu sticks! (See how easy? Keep going?)

I resolve to continue producing the Blowin' Smoke Podcast.

I resolve to keep thinking of Cretin Kyle anytime I read about or see goats.

I resolve to continue being a boob-man.

I resolve to keep stuffing more cigars into the fridge-idor even though I will never be able to smoke all the cigars already stored there.

I resolve to keep thinking Stephanie Watson tops the list of Pittsburgh's sexiest TV news anchor women, followed closely by Shannon Perrine and Sonni Abatta (who is now in Orlando, Florida...lucky bastards). Links below.

I resolve to keep wanting to learn to ballroom dance so I can impress the GirlWonder some day, but will find it easier to watch Edyta Sliwinska on DWTS instead. Link below.

I resolve to continue to be a goodwill ambassador for Pabst Blue Ribbon Beer. Burp.

And finally, I resolve to continue to be the loving and lovable, caring, devoted, protective, smartass, cynical, sometimes stinky, highly opinionated, Man Chair pontificating son, husband, father and friend I can be.

I don't know about you, but I'm thinking my odds are pretty damn good for keeping my new year resolutions.

...and that's the way I see it From the Man Chair.

Don't forget to checkout Stephanie Watson in a local mall ad. Schwing!, Shannon Perrine from Robert Hester Photography., Sonni Abatta., Edyta. Thanks, Maxim!

Episode #124 - LIVE from the Havana Room

Recorded: 2011-01-08
Cigar of the Day: Nestor Miranda Art Deco Robusto Grande

  New year - same sick, twisted Cretins! It's Blowin' Smoke #124!

Keeping with our new year resolution to keep herfin' and keep Blowin' Smoke, we gathered once again in the famous Havana Room for great cigars and a ton of BS. Thanks to our friends on Twitter, much of the dialog went downhill "faster than a wagon full of fat kids!"

Listener emails, listener phone calls, a new 5 Things and more of what the chicks are reading are all packed inside. Plus, what to say when you are naked at the drive-thru, the latest gift idea for the sexually adventurous, and midgets with vacuum cleaners. Seriously.

So, grab your new year stick and fire it up for Blowin' Smoke #124!

Don't forget to checkout the dwarf, his junk and a vacuum.

Blog'idor - Test

Posted: 2011-01-20

  test new blog'idor

Episode #125 - LIVE from the Havana Room

Recorded: 2011-01-23
Cigar of the Day: Warlock Robusto

  Single digit temps outside and double digit IQs inside means it's Blowin' Smoke #125!

On a cold cold football weekend, the very nipply Cretins managed to stay warm enough to herf many fine cigars including a new Cigar of the Day for review...the Warlock Robusto. While the pulled pork was waiting, we also gave away cigars with the help of our friends on Twitter, talked to Clint of 262 Cigars about a contest reminder, and explored more of what the chicks are reading these days. Plus, there was talk of an "oops" surgery, man caves for moms, what not to do in a hotel parking lot, and more.

So, throw another log on the fire, grab a big fatty and join us for more herf excellence right here on Blowin' Smoke #125!

Blog'idor - Why We Smoke ~ by Craig Rich

Posted: 2011-01-29

  We’ve all dealt with it. Some well-meaning, do-gooder looks at the cigar in your hand and says, “Ewwww! Why do you smoke those things?”

I don’t know about you, but instead of just sighing and shaking my head, I usually try to express myself in terms that I’m now convinced only cigar smokers understand.

I suppose each cigar smoker has his—or her—reasons for doing so. I can only speak for myself. Why do I smoke cigars?

The one word that pops into my mind most often is “brotherhood.” I’m one of those people who doesn’t have a lot of really close, longtime friends. You know...guys you went to college with or the best man at your wedding. But, I’ve met so many great guys while smoking cigars—guys who have become my best friends.

I’ll never forget the first time I arranged to meet someone in person that I “met” in a cigar podcast video chat room. My wife said I was going to get killed or abducted. Instead, I met one of the most remarkable people in my life. We now get together four or five times a year and even ventured to CigarFest together in 2010. You guessed it—my wife now calls it a “bromance.” Whatever…

My co-workers and friends don’t quite get it when I tell them I drove three hours each way on Saturday for the chance to sit around with a bunch of guys and smoke cigars for a couple of hours. But you understand, don’t you?

Why do we fire up a propane heater just to huddle in a freezing cold garage and stink to high heaven when we’re done? Well, sure it’s mostly just to be able to say we did it. But really it’s the brotherhood…the camaraderie.

I have a neighbor who has lived across the street from me for over a decade. We barely knew each other until we discovered we both enjoy cigars. Now we hang out several times a week, partner in a dart league and watch sports and drink beer together. Cigars did that.

I’ve met great guys from all around Michigan and surrounding states. I count among my cigar “friends,” some of the biggest names in the industry—even though I’ve never met many of them. Sure, some are herfin’ buddies but others are just names in a cigar forum, or Twitter followers and Facebook friends. But we have one thing that binds us together. And that one thing is something very few have in common and even fewer understand.

It’s hard to explain the magic that occurs when a group of like-minded “brothers of the leaf” gather together around cigars. Oh sure, there’s beer and sports and off-color humor. But, deep down, it’s the brotherhood; the feeling that these guys have got my back.

Then there are those nights out on the deck around the fire pit with three or four guys just sitting in silence, listening to the crickets, staring up at the sky, watching the smoke drift away, and with it, all the cares of your day. Sure it’s an overused phrase but, “It just doesn’t get any better than that.”

Alright, I know it’s sappy. Guys aren’t supposed to talk about this stuff. We don’t have feelings, right? Well, go screw yourself!

Ah! But often we smoke alone. What’s up with that?

Yes, I smoke cigars all by myself. You probably do too. Here in Michigan, we enjoy maybe five or six months of decent outdoor cigar smoking weather, two to three somewhat “manageable” months, and three to four months of weather unfit for Eskimos.

During the past 24 years, I’ve had a daily commute of about 30 minutes each way. That’s about 6,240 hours in the car. That equals 780 eight-hour work days. Assuming one works about 260 days a year, that’s three years worth of eight hour days. Alone. That’s a lot of time to think.

But my drive home each night is decompression time. I light up a cigar; put on a little music, and blow my stress out the window all the way home. In the summer this usually means I get to spend another 15-30 minutes out on the deck finishing my cigar. It’s the perfect end to a great day.

I truly believe that we cigar smokers, who generally don’t inhale, don’t smoke cigarettes and aren’t addicted to tobacco; who take the time to enjoy the finer things in life; who laugh with friends, celebrate our God-given freedoms, think deep thoughts and really stop to enjoy the beauty of the world around us, will outlive most of our detractors and have a lot more fun doing so.

Cigars help create an environment where guys can be guys and friends can bond, sometimes without saying a word. Taking the time to choose, clip, light and enjoy a cigar requires a dedicated amount of time and thought—as does a friendship. If you ignore it or abuse it, it will probably extinguish.

Keep your friends—and your cigars—close to you. Treat them with respect and they’ll never let you down.

# # #

~ Craig Rich is a husband and father, advertising executive, shipwreck hunter and discoverer, scuba diver, writer, historian and genealogist who enjoys music, Guinness Stout & fine cigars. He is the author of the 2010 book, “For Those in Peril: Shipwrecks of Ottawa County Michigan.”
You can contact him at: or follow him @OldPirate.

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