Life of the Mind; Life of the Leaf...

The Professor

Cruisin' on the 405.
In August 1999, I arrived in Bloomington, Indiana (after spending my whole life in western Washington state), for graduate school. On the first day of orientation, the director of graduate studies gave an impassioned speech about "the life of the mind" as it related to our studies and the profession into which we had all implicitly chosen to enter. I left my friends and family thousands of miles away because of the passion I had for intellectual inquiry, the study of public discourse, research, and the like. Years later -- as I'm in my first year of a professorship at a dream school of mine -- that same basic passion for my work still animates me.

As I sat here trying to think of something pithy and humorous to say for my first blog entry -- and procrastinating, I might add, from finishing my course prep for tomorrow -- I started coming to an appreciation of how much the "life of the leaf" has become another strong, motivating passion in my life.

I smoke cigars for three main reasons:
  1. They taste good.
  2. They're interesting.
  3. They cultivate friendships.
Together, these things encompass the "life of the leaf" for me; and I want to briefly address them in order.

First, there's a certain hedonistic aspect to the life of the leaf that's appealing. We smoke cigars because they taste good. I like that. It's simple, it's rooted purely in pleasure. Sometimes (often times, for many of us), it's a slippery slope in which we occasionally allow ourselves to get lost. As the saying goes, nothing exceeds like excess. :D

Second, I smoke cigars -- and many different cigars -- because they're interesting to me. Often times, I find myself using a wine or food analogy when explaining my passion for the leaf to non-smoking friends: Smoking cigars is like enjoying a fine wine or eating an expertly prepared meal; in addition to the pleasure (back to that again), you find new flavors ... little bits of intrigue around every corner. It goes beyond the moment, though, because the intellectual exercise extends into researching marcas, vintages, climatology, botany, personalities, and styles. Knowledge is a key product and path in the life of the leaf.

Last, but certainly not least, cigars and the communities built around them cultivate friendships. All of my best friends are either from academia or the world of cigars. Since joining CS about a year and a half ago, I have met and befriended some of the most kind, generous, and fun people I have ever had the pleasure to encounter. These are enduring and personal friendships; and they are central to the life of the leaf and this hobby/passion/obsession that is cigars.

Anyway ... that's my first entry. Please feel free to join in and comment -- or not. LoL! Perhaps it's a bit serious; but it's from the heart and it's for this wonderful community that has blessed me with the many aspects of the life of the leaf.

~The Professor


DoKK, your entry was very sincere:tu I would like to know more about your comment on "befriending" people on CS. Frankly, I do not see how you would befriend anyone. :confused:


Evolving Lead Gorilla
simple, elegant, and to the point.

Personally, I came to CS for a little more info on the world of cigars which I was just beginning to explore and kept coming back because of the amazing people I've met.

I look forward to your next blog post.


Enjoying today
Staff member
Wow, and I thought the blog feature would add no value to Club Stogie. Thanks for proving me wrong. That post alone was worth the price of admission.

The Professor

Cruisin' on the 405.
Thanks for the comments, folks! Keep 'em coming.... I'd like the next entry to be a funny one; but I'm feeling another serious (and slightly sappy) one coming on. Damn. LoL!

PS, Paul (pds) made me blush. :)


Waiting for SoCal X
Once again, Professor, you have hit the proverbial nail on the head. It is good to have a place to come to and share our politically incorrct hobby. And the friendships we create here are priceless.


Up Next-Ugly Orange Team
Thanks for the blog. Not enough people in the world using that "pithy" word. Nope, not nearly enough I say!


Whenever I think about asking for RG I must read your blog:tu Just kidding, seriously now it was well written. Keep the blog up DOkk. :tu