A Plug for Potpourri

Potpourri, especially the good stuff, can get expensive. And the rest? Well, best not to mention it. Perhaps it’s antibacterial or rodents find it gives offence. And if you are a single guy…. just mentioning potpourri is enough to raise a collective eyebrow at the bar.

So what are you to do? What if you’d like something a bit masculine, not overpowering and inexpensive?

On a grey, damp and blustery spring day, I am enveloped in the most comforting aroma here in the library. It is Old Virginia Flake. And before you get there, no… I am not referring to my own natural, heady, aroma. Rather, I am surrounded by the fragrance of old Virginia.

You see, I live in a town that tobacco built. There is an old Lucky Strike smoke stack not far from me. Philip Morris is headquartered here. You can still smell tobacco toasting when you drive past Bell’s Road on U.S. 95. It is a smell of prosperity, the unlit demon weed. It evokes the riches of another, slower, time. It is a smell which would be equally at home in your club, in the field, or at your grandfather’s home. It is, by turns, sweet in a honey vanilla way, and slightly bitter. Bourbon-like? Leather-ish?

Now, I don’t condone smoking. But what I do wholeheartedly endorse is the smell of good pipe tobacco. The bowl of Old Virginia is just that.. a bowl… and not the bowl of a pipe, either. It sits on my desk and about USD$3.00 gives me at least one refill. You may wish to emulate Sherlock Homes and keep the stash in a carpet slipper nailed to your mantle. However you decide to keep it, I think you and your guests will be pleased with the results.

The trick is not to put that in your pipe and smoke it.

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