Saturday, January 24, 2009

The Canadian

As far as pipe shapes go, the Canadian has long been one of my favorites. Characterized by its long, straight shank and short stem, the Canadian provides a dry, cool smoke. Why? Well, the smoke passes through a lot more briar before it reaches the mouth compared to other pipes. Consequently, more of the heat and moisture is absorbed by the pipe offering, at least in my opinion, a very satisfying smoking experience.

Where does the name come from? Ah, now the mystery of it. I have no earthly idea why pipes of this particular shape are called Canadian. The names of many other shapes often describe loosely what the pipe looks like, e.g. apple, volcano, brandy glass, etc. But why Canadian? If any reader can supply an answer, I would be most grateful.

I have several Canadians in my collection, my favorite probably bein an Ascorti I picked up years ago when I worked at a Tinder Box. I also have a Ser Jacopo, a David Jones, and a Bjarne. I prefer straight pipes in general, so to me the Canadian is kind of the "ultimate" straight pipe. Beyond the quality of the smoke, maybe I like the image it projects. To me, it has a bit of a nostalgic look to it, a throwback to the 1940s.

I like the shape so much, I designed a t-shirt promoting it available at The Erudite Outlet (see photo above). I tried to attract Canadian pipe smokers as well as...Canadian pipe smokers. In other words, those of us who smoke Canadian pipes, and Canadians who smoke pipes. Time will tell if my little pun is a selling point!

- Bob

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