One or two of you may remember that a few weeks ago I lost my main pipe.

Despite my best efforts, it never turned up and its disappearance shall remain one of the great mysteries of life, along with why the sight of Marty Morrisey makes me cringe or where all those wire coathangers come from.

I got in touch with my good friend Elie, and he duly made me up a new one and put it in the post.  He even sent me a tracking number so I could watch its progress as it made its way from the Dordogne in France to my humble abode here in Wickla.  That was nearly three weeks ago.

Each day I would check the website and each day it would happily tell me that my pipe was in Thiviers.  That was all very well, but it wasn't much use to me in Thiviers and I would much rather it was here.

After a couple of weeks of this I got a bit pissed off.  I contacted Elie.  He contacted the post office and ate the balls off them.  They said they would look into the matter and would be back to him in 30 days.  The next day the website suddenly changed and said that the parcel had "Départ de France" which would tend to indicate that the French postal system doesn't like its balls being chewed.

It arrived yesterday.

It's a beauty.

New pipe

I know there are pipe smokers out there who sneer at metal pipes [a real pipe smoker will only touch a briar] but in my book they are just being elitist snobs.  I like Elie's inventions for one simple reason – a cool dry smoke.

So how does that work?

Disassembled pipe

It's very simple really.  For the smoke to reach the mouthpiece, it has to travel over that central block with the fins, which condenses any liquid and cools the smoke as well.  At the end of a smoke, just unscrew the end nut and pour out the goo.  The bowls are interchangeable too, with various shapes and sizes [I have a nice collection that I managed not to lose].  And because the whole thing disassembles very easily it's a doddle to clean.

I know this looks like one of those sponsored things but it isn't.  As always, when I come across some artistry I like to give credit where it's due.

Another thing about Elie's pipes is that they are of course unique.

So if I see some cunt wandering around the village with a similar pipe, I'll have his balls. 

It could only be the one I lost or that he stole.

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Of pipes and balls — 7 Comments

    • Would that not tempt you?  😉

      It does tend to attract a little attention and quite a few people have stopped to admire it and ask where I got it.  They probably think I'm smoking pot [which I don't do outside the coffee shop].

  1. Was that not the basic principle of the Falcon (?) pipe that was very popular 40-50 years ago? They had a metal stem with a twirly bit in the middle, if I remember right. I never smoked one myself, so my knowledge is sketchy, but I worked with a couple of people who used them. Not nearly as aesthetically pleasing as yours, though. I would seriously consider taking up pipe smoking again (I had a brief love affair with pipes about 35 years ago) to own one of those.

    • Your description of the Falcon is spot on.  I used to have one or two but they weren't that hectic, though popular.  My favourite [at the time] was the Ronson which had an ingenious method of forcing the smoke to travel the stem three times.  They went out of production years ago and it was through searching for them that I found Elie.

      It's worthwhile browsing Elie's site for the vast array of weird and wonderful pipes he makes.  My one is very much one of the more conservative versions.  Just take a look at his Elegance B or his Ent G which I think you'll agree is bound to get some strange and envious glances?

      • Ah, yes, they would both indeed draw envious glances, even, dare I say, from antis. If ever there was a reason to start smoking, then both those pipes epitomise it. They are works of art whose full glory would be revealed when they have smoke curling languidly from their bowls. Beautiful.

  2. Oo-er!  That's a hell of a tool, ya got there, Gramps.  I bet you have hours of fun fiddling with that. As the actress said to the bishop …

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