Wednesday, April 28, 2010

And now for something completely different...

So on one of my nightly walks last week, I ran into a friend of mine out in front of the Lake Shore Plaza, he was outside smoking a cigarette. I greeted him and we chatted for a minute, then he asked me if I wanted to see some cool stuff? So me being the inquisitive type said "of course". We walked through the building doors that were right behind us and proceeded down the corridor to the Smokin Hot Smoke Shop. Yes, this is the hookah place that I was telling you about a few weeks ago. Anyway, we enter the shop and my friend goes straight behind the counter and pulls out a few boxes.

What's this?
Ever hear of e-cigarettes or electronic cigarettes?

He puts the cigarette looking device between his lips and takes a deep puff, just like he's smoking a cigarette, next thing I know he's exhaling billows of smoke. WTF? How does it do that? I would soon learn it's not smoke, but vapor. Too weird! Leave it to the Chinese to come up with something like this!

Of course I had to try it. Just for the record, I quit smoking cigarettes 24 years ago, long story, but seeing how there's no tobacco being burnt, what the heck, let's give it a try. So I press the little button on top of the e-cigarette and take a big puff. As I'm inhaling, it kind of sounds like there's water gurgling around? That's the atomizer or heating element that vaporizes a nicotine solution stored in the mouthpiece. So as I'm inhaling, I can sense the smoke or vapor entering my lungs, also there's a hint of nicotine. I exhale. WOW, that's an amazing amount of smoke, correction, vapor. Honestly, I'd compare this to smoking a hookah - it's got a similar sort of feel to it as you inhale, definitely not a bad experience at all. Now, would I go and buy one of these? If I still smoked, YES! But since I don't smoke, it's not something that I actually need.

Now, the interesting part is that they make an e-cigar, or e-Gar as well. My friend took one of these out and showed it to me. It works the same way as the e-cigarette and it's basically the same shape and size as an ordinary cigar, however it's made of plastic. He took a couple of puffs on it and again volumes of smoke as he exhales. God, that's weird... He told me you can get a buzz on these too.

Well, I'm not about to buy one, but I can see how they might come in handy if you really had a craving to smoke. I'm pretty sure you can smoke these inside - there's no flame, no tobacco, and no tobacco smoke, only vapor, plus, you can pull it out of your pocket, take a hit on it, and just put it back in your pocket - takes about 2 seconds. No more going outside for a smoke.

Many interesting possibilities...

Not much new to report on the cigar front for me, although I did smoke a bunch of cigars over the weekend, just nothing that I haven't smoked many times before. I'm waiting for my friend Herman/10-7 Habaneros Aficionados Club, to report on his recent visit to the cigar factories in Nicaragua. You can follow his blog here: 10-7 Habaneros Aficionados Club

BTW, I'll be heading to South America in a couple of weeks for vacation. Who knows, I might even try to score a few legit Cubans while I'm down there!

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