Archive for October, 2012

Sandy and Trouble in the Grange by Frank Seltzer

Tuesday, October 30th, 2012

I hope all of you are safe.  I know I cannot get through to the mothership in Whippany, NJ…I am guessing the power is out. I do know they left the office early yesterday as Sandy was getting close.   I heard Tommy Zman is ok but out of power.. he was helping a neighbor who had a tree fall. No word on the others yet.

But the blog must go on so here it goes.


The company Crowned Heads put out its latest cigar this summer at the IPCPR show.  It is called Headley Grange named after a 19th century poorhouse later turned a rock recording studio where in 1971 Led Zeppelin recorded “When the Levee Breaks”.  That song was what inspired the new Headley Grange cigar from Crowned Heads.  Unfortunately the name is also causing some trouble.

While the company filed for a trademark on the cigar, just before the waiting time was over, someone filed an objection.  The National Grange of the Order of Patrons of Husbandry objected.  Really?  Yup.  Apparently this group is called the Grange generically and its main function these days is trying to blackmail coerce groups into paying them for use of the name Grange…never mind that the original Headley Grange was in England starting in the 1795, preceding the U-S grange by nearly 100 years  and that the term grange, itself, is about 700 years older than the group.  I doubt someone would confuse a cigar with a bunch of farmers…but you see the Grange’s membership is about 1/5th of what it was during its heyday so like patent trolls, the group bullies people with anything that sounds like theirs.

Crowned Heads has filed suit in federal court to fight this mess.  The Grange says it has never lost a case and according to the article is spends about 20% of its annual expenses on legal fees or about $200k every year.  Nice fee generation for the lawyer but ya know maybe that money could be better used elsewhere unless it generates that much income….but that is just me.

Jon Huber, co-owner of Crowned Heads, said he expects the standoff to be a long and costly process that he wishes could have been avoided altogether.

“It was not our choosing to get into a legal battle with this group,” Huber said. “However, our belief in fighting for what is right and not backing down has reinforced our commitment to stay the course.”


November First

This is the day Michigan’s tax cap on cigars takes effect.  Previously, the tax was 32 percent and starting Thursday, the tax will cap out at 50-cents.  That is good news.


Also on Thursday, there will unfortunately be a good-bye dinner in Carlsbad, California…good-bye to smoking that is.  Starting Friday November 2nd, a new ordinance begin banning smoking on OUTDOOR patios.  So on Thursday night, Dee Dee and Gregg Engles of the Oceanside store Cigar Grotto will host one last cigar dinner at Hennessey’s Tavern in Carlsbad.

“We have been hosting cigar socials on the third Thursday of the month for 11 years at (the) Carlsbad Hennessey’s,” said Dee Dee Engels…. The events attract 60 to 70 participants, she said, and for special occasions, sometimes it’s standing room only.

Ok so do the math, say 60 people a week for 11 years spending only $25…that is nearly a million in revenue.  But yeah there is no economic impact for smoking bans.  By the way, Dee Dee and Gregg also hold cigar dinners in four nearby towns and those will continue so only Carlsbad will be the loser.  Sorry Hennessey’s.

One week and counting

Next Tuesday is Election Day.  There are a couple of things you should be aware of.  In Missouri, Proposition B calls for a 150% increase in the taxes on cigars and pipe tobacco.  (There also is a 760% increase on cigarette taxes).  The local pols say the tax increase will help fund education and healthcare….they always say that.  But the reality is that these tax increases will kill local businesses and as other states have found, the tax increases will force Missouri consumers to buy their products elsewhere.


As I noted at the beginning of the month, it bears repeating for those in Arizona. Richard Carmona is running for the U-S Senate.  He is a weasel and must be stopped.  Carmona’s opponent is Jeff Flake.  Consider helping.  Why?  Carmona was the Surgeon General under George W. Bush who said Secondhand Smoke is dangerous. (Even though there was not any evidence).  Not only that, but Carmona told Congress in testimony that he saw no need for tobacco products in society, but because he wasn’t in Congress, that was not his field.  If he gets elected, expect him to push this harder.  If you thought S-CHIP and FDA regulation were bad…imaging what would happen if THIS guy got into Congress.


More Kalifornia Kapers


Well Santa Monica has done it.  The city council last week approved an ordinance banning smoking in all apartments and condos. Well not really. Just kind of.

Under the law, building owners and condo associations must start conducting a smoking survey of current occupants, who must designate their units either “smoking” or “non-smoking.”

Theoretically, if the units are designated smoking you can continue. The law goes into effect November 22nd.   This should be interesting.



Torano Salutem

Monday, October 29th, 2012

Yep, you guessed it. The Torano Salutem is another release from IPCPR 2012. I ran across them at Ed’s shop the other day. Some of the regular guests there suggested I try it. As usual, I have no background on this blend. Does the Salutem deliver where it counts? Read on…


Wrapper: Habano Ecuador

Binder: Jalapa, Nicaragua

Filler: Cameroon, Dominican Corojo, Esteli

Size: Robusto 5 x 52

Price: Around $7.00


Pre-Smoke & Construction:

The wrapper was shiny and smooth, with an almost waxy appearance. The wrapper had an aroma of hay and earth, and it left a tingle in the nose. The foot was the same, but it wasn’t as strong. This cigar was packed rock solid. It had no give when squeezed. This led to a draw that was a bit too tight for my liking. The pre-light flavor was wood, hay, earthiness, and a touch of bitterness.

Once lit, the draw opened up a little, making for a much nicer smoking experience. The ash held for just over an inch, and the burn required a few minor corrections.

Apparently I forgot to take a picture of the unlit cigar. Instead, I offer you a pic of the fancy band.

0 Torano_Salutem cigars


The first third had a mixture of earthiness, wood, cayenne pepper, and a hint of leather. The smoke feel wasn’t particularly thick, but it was chewy, if that makes sense.

2 Torano_Salutem cigars

The second third took on a smooth smoke feel. Wood was the dominant flavor, followed by pepper, earth, and a touch of leather. A bitter sweet component joined in at around half way point.

3 Torano_Salutem cigars

The last third kept the same flavor profile as before. The only difference was in the aftertaste, which clung to the lips and tongue.

4 Torano_Salutem cigars


This was a solid medium bodied cigar. The flavor profile brings one word to mind, balanced. I wasn’t wowed, but I wasn’t let down at all. There is nothing to complain about here. I think the Torano Salutem is worth a try.

Major Props to Us Cigar Smokers by Tommy Zman

Friday, October 26th, 2012

“Ah, if only I had brought a cigar with me! This would have established my identity.” – Charles Dickens

Dickens was right, you know. A real, true, dyed in the wool cigar smoker sees his (or her) cigars as an extension of his personality, a kind of a prop, if you will. We who cherish the Latin born leaf are passionate to the point of our cigar smoking experiences being spiritual, as the physical cigar itself becomes a piece of our very being, much like an arm, leg, our sense of humor or the way we talk.

This concept is incredibly difficult to understand for those who have never partaken in the lighting & puffing ritual – to them, cigars are a dirty, smelly, disease ridden habit associated with crusty old men, Mafioso types, and Rich Uncle Pennybags from the game of Monopoly (hey, I love that guy!) To us, it is the way we relax, bond with others, and bring ourselves to an almost meditative state that allows the troubles of the world to float away in a puff of blue swirling smoke. The cigar really does become an extension of both our physical body and our persona, and when we light our La Glorias, we feel a great sense of safety and security within.

“I never can understand how anyone can not smoke—it deprives a man of the best part of life … with a good cigar in his mouth a man is perfectly safe, nothing can touch him—literally.” – German novelist, Nobel Prize laureate, social critic, philanthropist – Thomas Mann

Many a real life person and TV/movie character alike have utilized a cigar as a part of their persona. Winston Churchill was perhaps the world’s quintessential cigar smoker, lighting up absolutely anywhere he went, even having an oxygen mask fitted for a cigar when flying in unpressurized military planes. The guy pissed off many a king, queen, and foreign dignitary, but old Winnie didn’t give a rat’s ash, whatsoever, because the cigar was basically surgically attached to his mandibles.

“My rule of life prescribed as an absolutely sacred rite smoking cigars and also the drinking of alcohol before, after and if need be during all meals and in the intervals between them.” – Winston Churchill

Some TV greats who smoked cigars as an expression of their personality, George Burns, Milton Berle, Archie Bunker, Peter Falk as Columbo, and the surly Sgt. Rizzo from MASH. When you saw these men with a cigar, it made a statement from their character – and long before the politically correct control-our-lives contingent took hold, may I note. I remember in my interview with actor Frank Vincent for the 2006 Cover Story in Cigar Magazine, he spoke of how a cigar actually helped to put emphasis on a particular moment during a TV or movie scene. The man best known as the ruthless Phil Leotardo on the Sopranos and Billy Batts of Goodfellas has this to say about it…

“Well, you look at George Burns; he loved to smoke, but the cigar was certainly a prop for him. As an entertainer or a performer, sometimes you’re required to use it as a prop,” Frank explains. “I’ve  used it in films and it becomes something that’s an extension of the personality; I’ve often used it for that purpose. While in character, you can look at somebody, raise your eyebrow, then take a draw on the cigar – it gives a little more meaning to the moment. So, it’s not always primarily a prop, but used in conjunction with a certain character, it becomes a part of the persona. A puff on a cigar can also give a nice pause for the character while he’s thinking of what to say next.” (Or in Frank’s case, right before he kicks the livin’ Shinola out of someone.)So light ‘em up my brothers and sisters of leafiness, and show the world that we cigar smokers are indeed a proud bunch of characters who have enjoyed our pastime and passion for many a decade, and will continue savor this legal product that enriches our lives while letting the world know who we are.

I urge you to PLEASE SUPPORT Cigar Rights of America as they continue to deal with congress, the senate, and all US legislators who need to be made aware that our cigars are the best friends we know of and we will fight like hell to keep them in our lives! >>

As always, stay smoky my friend


JR Cigars Blog with the Zman

 > CLICK HERE to Check out this week’s J•R CIGARS Weekly Special


Te-Amo Revolution

Thursday, October 25th, 2012

Some local shops are starting to get new IPCPR releases from Altadis. Why travel all the way to IPCPR, when I can just wait awhile? That’s just what I did, nothing. Naturally, what caught my eye was the extreme oval shape, and the no frills band. The price was decent as well, so I had to pick a few up.


Wrapper: San Andres Habano

Binder: San Andres Corojo

Filler: Nicaraguan, San Andres Negro, San Andres Corojo

Size: Robusto Ovalado 5 1/4 x 56

Price: Around $6.00


Pre-Smoke & Construction:

Where have I seen an oval shaped cigar before? Ooh that’s right, <click> The wrapper did look nice though, and it was more oval shaped than the San Latano. The smell of the wrapper and foot was spice and earth. The cigar was solidly packed, with only a slight squish when squeezed. The draw had slight resistance, and the pre-light flavor was wood and earthiness.

The first two thirds required several burn corrections, and the flaky ash held for just about an inch.

1 Te-Amo_Revolution cigars


The first third had earthiness, cedar, and a mild spice. I picked up a floral component towards the end of this third. The smoke feel was dry, but not too dry.

2 Te-Amo_Revolution cigars

The second third kept the same basic flavors, but they seemed rich and more refined. The smoke became thicker, and it had a sweet finish. To recap, there was earth, wood, mild pepper, and an interesting floral note. Simple, but not bad.

3 Te-Amo_Revolution cigars

The last third became very well balanced. While there were no new flavors introduced, the existing ones melded together nicely. The aftertaste became sweet and tingly.

4 Te-Amo_Revolution cigars


This was a decent medium bodied cigar. There was no wow factor at all, but I did enjoy the gradual build of flavors. Construction was good, and it was just what I expected from such an oddly shaped cigar. I could see this going well with coffee. Smoke it, see for yourself.

Hello Foundry by Frank Seltzer

Tuesday, October 23rd, 2012

Last month, we told you about Michael Giannini’s new role at General Cigar as Creative Director.  Giannini  had been working with La Gloria Cubana since 2000.  We mentioned his new cigar was Foundry, well it hits stores this week and next.

Foundry is a very limited edition steampunk smoke and the idea came from Giannini who often dresses like a steampunker in Victorian, yet modern clothes.  Foundry is unique in that it uses no tobacco from the Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, Honduras, Mexico or Indonesia.  The company will not say much about the blend, except that is uses 5 tobaccos from 4 different countries and one of those is the wrapper, a Connecticut grown H47 Pleno Sol leaf that is 8 to 10 years old.  The cigar itself is hard to describe because the tobaccos are so unique.  Says Giannini, “When we were smoking these we were dumbfounded, we could not describe these tobaccos and how they actually synched together.

The cigar comes in four sizes with each named for historical figures from the  nineteenth century.  The Wells (6”x 50, SRP per cigar is $7.95) is for H.G. Wells author of The Time Machine. The Lovelace (6 ¼ ” x 54, SRP per cigar is $8.45) is for Lady Lovelace — an English mathematician, the only legitimate child of  Lord Byron and known for her work on Charles Babbage’s mathematical computer.  The  Talbot (5” x 60, SRP per cigar is $8.95) is named for Henry Fox Talbot who was a photographic pioneer. The Cayley (6  ½” x 60 x 56 x 43, SRP per cigar is $9.45) is named for George Cayley the father of aerodynamics.

Punch it up

Punch's Tailgating Pack

Speaking of General Cigars, the company is hitting into tailgating as we approach the heart of football and the end of baseball season with, what else, a Tailgating 6-pack.  The deal is you buy four Punch cigars in the special box and you get two free.  In addition, you get a Punch cutter and a metal bottle opener (the kind bartenders use.)

The company also is running a contest on the web where it will give away one of the 6-packs every day until December 28th.  There is a grand prize of 5 boxes of Punch cigars, a Char-Broil Grill2Go and gift cards from Chicago Steak and StubHub so you get game tickets and meat for the grill at your tailgate party.  You can enter every day at


Secondhand smoke Backfiring

A Gallup poll released two weeks ago shows that all the rantings about secondhand and now thirdhand smoke are backfiring at least with smokers.  29 percent of smokers think it is very harmful and that is down from 35% the year before. But non smokers still believe the lie.  According to Dr. Michael Siegel:

in 2002 the government started upping the rhetoric about the “dangers” of secondhand smoke.

What changed was that the anti-smoking movement began to exaggerate the health effects of secondhand smoke, telling the public that just 30 minutes    of secondhand smoke could cause heart attacks in otherwise healthy people, asserting that secondhand smoke exposure is as harmful as smoking, and starting to scare the public about undocumented hazards of third hand smoke.

Third hand smoke is the residue that remains AFTER you have smoked.  There is no science on it and came from a poll asking people if they thought there was such a thing. Then later one study said yes third hand smoke exists and of course the anti’s jumped on it.

Adds Siegel, the gross exaggerations and distortions of the science has succeeded in weakening the case against active smoking as well.

But That’s Not ALL. Now 4th and 5th hand smoke

I used to joke that fourth hand smoke was when I was THINKING about smoking a cigar.  Well Dr. Siegel says there is actually research going on for fourth and fifth hand smoke ( his term,)  Nice to know that the government is spending nearly 400-thousand dollars to study this.

…the proposed study will determine if the risk of childhood asthma induced following exposure to cigarette smoke during pregnancy is limited only to the offspring of the exposed pregnancy, or if this risk is carried to grandchildren or even great-grandchildren.

According to Siegel:

What is fourthhand smoke, you ask?

I coined the term to represent the effects that fetal exposure to tobacco smoke might have on the subsequent child’s children, even though those individuals might have no exposure to firsthand, secondhand, or third hand smoke.

What, then, is fifth hand smoke?

I coined the term fifth hand smoke to represent the effects that fetal exposure to tobacco smoke might have on the subsequent child’s grandchildren.

The bottom line is they will never stop until all tobacco is banned (and we know how well Prohibition worked against alcohol – hello Boardwalk Empire) and considering they are funded by the government, the money will keep flowing.

Arandoza Cigars Blue Label

Monday, October 22nd, 2012

Thanks to Robert at Arandoza Cigars, for sending me a couple samples of the Blue Label. Arandoza is a new boutique cigar company. The blue label is made in Estelli, Nicaragua, at a factory owned by Erik Espinosa. All name dropping aside, does the Blue Label deliver where it counts? Let’s find out.


Wrapper: Nicaraguan

Binder & Filler: Nicaraguan

Size: Robusto 5 x 52

Price: $6.00 MSRP


Pre-Smoke & Construction:

The dark wrapper was virtually flawless, with only a few small veins. Sniffing the wrapper, I detected mild pepper and earth. The foot had the same aroma, along with woodiness. Overall, the cigar was firmly, and consistently packed. The draw had slight resistance, and an earthy flavor.

The ash was a little flaky, and held for about an inch. The burn required one correction.

1 Arandoza_Cigars_Blue_Label cigars


The first third opened up with a nice peppery blast. It didn’t burn my face off, but it had potential. Earthiness was up next, along with espresso. The smoke was plentiful, and it had a dry feel.

2 Arandoza_Cigars_Blue_Label cigars

Pepper calmed down a bit in the second third. This allowed earthiness and espresso to stand out more. Each flavor was equal in strength, and separated from each other. Towards the end of this third, there were subtle nutty notes.

3 Arandoza_Cigars_Blue_Label cigars

The last third kept the same flavors, but they combined nicely. Pepper calmed down even more, but kept it’s zing. This led to a rich, clingy aftertaste.

4 Arandoza_Cigars_Blue_Label cigars


This was a good medium to full bodied cigar. It certainly isn’t for the beginner though. Perhaps what made it stand out was it’s bold, simple flavors. There was nothing bad to report really. But, if you prefer milder, subtle cigars, this may not be for you. As for me, I liked it.

CIGARS May be Weird, But Man do I LOVE ‘Em!, by Tommy Zman

Friday, October 19th, 2012

Now I know that if you’re reading this blog, you must be a pretty decent fan of cigars. We’re such a passionate bunch and we love everything there is about this wonderful pastime. But as much as we do love it, you’ve gotta admit that the whole concept is pretty weird.

You really have to wonder what prompted the Indians to roll up leaves, stick them in their mouths, light them on fire and then suck on the hot smoke and then blow it out. Seems incredibly bizarre when you put it that way, doesn’t it? Really, what the hell made them think that was a solid idea? Did they have a good scotch they needed to pair something with?

Admittedly, a lot of things we humans do are pretty wacky. I mean what sadist thought of roller coasters and bungee jumping? And who the hell ever came up with the idea for Gummy Bears – damn those things are friggin rancid. But the invention of smoking is a wacky one, for sure.

Okay, I’m not here to complain, I’m here to praise those early natives who thought it would be a good idea to take the leaves of the Cohoba plant and turn it into one of the most relaxing pastimes any of us have ever known.

I think it would have been cool to see the evolution of those crude early rolled plants into what we would have called the first real cigars. What the hell made people hundreds of years ago think, “Hey, I know, we’ll let the leaves age a bit on the plant, then we’ll pick them, let ‘em dry out and we’ll age ‘em some more before we smoke ‘em.” Was it some kind of accident where the dude in charge was sick for a few months and when he came back he inadvertently invented the aging process? I guess you can say, “who really cares” as long as we get to enjoy the fruits of others past screw ups.

Back in 2009, I was fortunate enough to have visited General Cigars facilities in Honduras and the Dominican Republic. I stayed in Santiago in the DR for a couple of days, then it was onto the one-time Villazon factory in Cofradia for the remainder of the week. It was a spectacular trip, something that will always remain with me. Former JR chief Lew Rothman told me, “Zman, you THINK you know about cigars… but you don’t know SQUAT until you take this trip.” And of course, he was right. I thought being a fancy shmancy writer for Cigar Magazine gave me some kind of elevated tobacco status, but after my week long journey – being taken through EVERY SINGLE step in the cigar making process – I was nothing short of born again. I had a whole new lease on cigar life and an incredible appreciation for what the people in this industry do, all to create a good smoke.

What I was most blown away by on my trip was the massive amount of collective effort it takes to produce a finished cigar. From the planting of seedlings, to picking the crops, drying, sorting, aging, etc, there is a mountain of time and effort that goes into the process long before the roller gets his hands on the tobacco.  Then it’s banded, celloed, boxed and put into a deep freeze for a few days as a preventive measure of killing any, insects, mold, or other nasties that could eventually end up on our palates. And then it’s boxed aged until the master blenders and plant managers feel they are ready for you and me to smoke.

So, while we may agree that the act of cigar smoking is indeed a bizarre concept in theory, I think we would ALL agree that it’s totally cool to enjoy our weird behavior and light up our favorite sticks on a regular basis.

I urge you to PLEASE SUPPORT Cigar Rights of America as they continue to deal with congress, the senate, and all US legislators who need to be made aware that our cigars are the best friends we know of and we will fight like hell to keep them in our lives! >>

As always, stay smoky my friends,


 JR Cigars Blog with the Zman

 > CLICK HERE to Check out this week’s J•R CIGARS Weekly Special

Trinidad Paradox

Friday, October 19th, 2012

A product of Altadis, the Trinidad Paradox is yet another release from IPCPR 2012. I have very little knowledge of the Trinidad brand. Seeing them on the shelf at a local shop, I figured it was worth a try. Read on, and see how the Paradox went with fine, filtered, Florida tap water.


Wrapper: Mexican San Andreas Criollo 98

Binder: Dominican

Filler: Nicaraguan

Size: Robusto 5 x 54

Price: Around $6.50


Pre-Smoke & Construction:

The first thing that caught my eye was the perfect box press. There were no flaws in the wrapper, and it had a sweet cocoa scent. The cigar was evenly packed, and it had a little give when squeezed. The draw had slight resistance, which is right where I like it. The pre-light flavor was a dark, sweet bitterness.

The burn required a few corrections, and the flaky ask held for about an inch.

1 Trinidad_Paradox altadis cigars


The first third opened up with simple earthy and woody flavors. I picked up an easy cayenne pepper through the nose, and it stuck around for the duration. The smoke was thick, yet crisp and dry at the same time. A very subtle sweet spice lingered in the background.

2 Trinidad_Paradox altadis cigars

The pepper from the first third developed into a sweet spice. The most noticeable flavors were wood and cocoa. Earthiness was pushed into the background, and the smoke feel became a little creamy. The aftertaste left a nice tingle on the tongue.

3 Trinidad_Paradox altadis cigars

The last third had a slight increase in pepper, but it remained easy to pass through the sinus. Wood was the dominant flavor, and cocoa took a back seat. The smoke feel lost it’s creaminess, and became crisp. That aftertaste remained tingly, with a tinge of earthiness and sweetness.

4 Trinidad_Paradox altadis cigars


This was a good medium bodied cigar. It had nice flavors, but there was no wow factor at all. That’s not to say it was bad. I would probably be a little more enthusiastic if this were a $5.00 cigar.  Opinion’s are like assholes, so I say give this a try, and judge for yourself.

St. Pete Cigar–Kristoff Cigar Smoker Event

Wednesday, October 17th, 2012

It’s time for another cigar smoker event at St. Pete Cigar!


The Kristoff cigar smoker event is this Friday, October 19th, from 5:30pm – 8:00pm. As always, there will be one day only deals, raffles, and free grub.

If you need more information, go to the St. Pete Cigar website.

See you there!

Stinky, Holiday, Omaha and Snickers by Frank Seltzer

Tuesday, October 16th, 2012

Stinky cigar station

Betcha never expected to see those words together huh?

From the guy who came up with the Stinky ashtray, (you do not have one yet?) yeah the bowl that holds a bunch of cigars and when using it outside the ashes don’t blow out, comes the next thing.  The Stinky Cigar Station.

By trade, Stinky is an engineer and is always thinking about stuff.  He noticed at a lot of cigar stores, and even in man caves people were always looking for their cutters or lighters.  You pick them up and set them down and then forget where. To solve this problem he has come up with a way to keep everything in one organized (I said he is an engineer) place.

Every item is attached to a retractable cable so once you are done, you don’t have to hunt for where you put it.  It goes back into place.  The cutting station also has a drawer for things like butane, cedar strips, matches…in short all your cigar needs.  The top of the drawer will hold a regular stinky up to the huge Herf edition.

So far there is only his prototype but he is working on finishing the design and hopes to go into production soon.  No word on the price or when it will be available.

Holiday Shipping

Davidoff Holiday Gifts

OK so we aren’t even at Halloween and stores are already putting out Christmas stuff.  It happens.  In the cigar biz, well if you want to sell holiday packages, ya gotta get them to the stores early.  That’s why this week, Davidoff announced for the first time it will have holiday gifts.  The  festive packaging will be for a Robusto Collection, Tubo Assortment a 9 cigar assortment and a 10 count Puro d’Oro.  No more details on what the assortments are, nor the price, but they will be shipping to stores in the next couple of weeks.   The packaging certainly is wintery.

Omaha Defiance

Big John’s Billiards is a pool hall on the southwest side of Omaha.  It allows smoking.  Trouble is the Nebraska is a smoke free state.  No matter, Bill Prout is fighting back by putting signs up saying smoking is allowed and putting ashtrays around his establishment.

Prout’s father Will was the one who opened Big John’s in 1981 and although he is not a smoker, Bill continues to fight the ban.  Why? Cause the ban is costing the family a lot of money.  Bill says he and his father were forced to close a Big John’s in Lincoln because of the ban.  Listen to some common sense…

“Nobody wants to leave in the middle of a game of pool to go outside and smoke a cigarette,” he said of Big John’s.

The business serves food and liquor. It has 30 pool tables, a dozen pinball machines and at least eight smoke-eating filtering machines.

“It’s the ultimate place where people go to smoke,” Prout said of a pool hall.

Big John’s has gone to court to fight the smoking ban and says he is making a stand.  Good on him.

New York Just Say NO Snickers?

Say you are in a hospital waiting room waiting for your wife, or mother to come out of surgery.  You already know you can’t smoke…so you head to the cafeteria for some comfort food…Guess what?  Hope you like broccoli.  In his latest effort, Bloomberg is going to ban sugary and fatty foods from the city’s public and PRIVATE hospitals (including vending machines). Bye Bye Snickers.

If there’s any place that should not allow smoking or try to make you eat healthy, you would think it’d be the hospitals,” Bloomberg said Monday. “We’re doing what we should do and you’ll see, I think, most of the private hospitals go along with it.”

The cafeteria crackdown will ban deep fryers, make leafy green salads a mandatory option and allow only healthy snacks to be stocked near the cafeteria entrance and at cash registers. At least half of all sandwiches and salads must be made or served with whole grains. Half-size sandwich portions must be available for sale.

Just how much is done…for your own good?  And at what price?

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