Pipe Smoking: Hobby? Life Style?

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jpmcwjr

Preferred Member
May 12, 2015
13,896
832
Monterey Peninsula
Smoking a pipe can be your main hobby, even an essential part of whatever you consider your lifestyle, but it doesn't have to be either. It's neither for quite a few here, based on posts over the past four years; it's just something we do. So, when you're greeted with "Welcome to the hobby", welcome indeed, whether it remotely resembles a hobby to you or not.
There are some true hobbyists among us, and some of their collections are awesome. Then we have a reviewer or three, and whether they consider that a hobby is up to them. One fellow has made it an incredible avocation. The casual maker of a handful of pipes may consider it a hobby. True collectors are probably hobbyists. (Not like me, with barrels of pipes, pretty random and not even sorted.) The historians among us may consider their passion a hobby. But just smoking a pipe and trying new blends doesn't make it a hobby—unless it is so for you.
As to life-style, I am not even sure what that is with respect to smoking. I guess we all have a "life style" that could be categorized by academics, but so what.

 
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mortonbriar

Preferred Member
Oct 25, 2013
932
35
This is the conclusion I have come to...
Codgers are out there, enjoying their pipe and blend of choice day in day out. Not as a hobby, but just alongside coffee, walking the dog etc etc.
But if you have signed up and participate as a member of a pipe smoking forum then pipe smoking is (at least to some extent) your hobby. I have read paragraphs from members here trying to convince themselves and others that this is not their hobby, but it seems to me that if it was NOT their hobby they would not be on this forum, sharing space with fellow pipe smokers, giving and taking advice/opinions on all things pipe and tobacco related.
I also think that the word 'hobby' has a spectrum of associations, kind of like how 'arts and crafts' could be seen as an inspiring art movement from the turn of last century or it could refer to grandma's knitting socks for the church fair, (I would buy the socks by the way). The definition for hobby is almost a description of pipe smoking, although pipe smoking, thanks to its ability to multi task, is not restricted to leisure time.
Isaac.

 

mikethompson

Preferred Member
Jun 26, 2016
4,066
176
Interesting thread. I think that like most things, whatever it is we are doing here can't be categorized. Am I a pipe smoker? Collector? Hobbyist? Maybe a little of all of them.
I'm not sure smoking a bowl a month counts you as a pipe smoker, and 8 pipes is ridiculously low considering how many pipes some of you guys have. For me, this hobby (yes I used that word) is something that I just enjoy being part of.

 
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jpmcwjr

Preferred Member
May 12, 2015
13,896
832
Monterey Peninsula
Isaac- (Mortonb)
Good points.
I guess for me participating in this forum is the hobby part. I like the camaraderie, sharing ideas, poking at things, learning, and hopefully helping others to learn, to enjoy this passion. And, it better be something, given the time I've spent here! :) But the smoking part, for me, not a hobby.

 
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voorhees

Preferred Member
May 30, 2012
3,585
104
Gonadistan
When I'm home alone smoking I don't consider it a hobby. If I'm looking for or discussing pipes with fellow pipers, it a hobby. Lifestyle is a bit more involved than I consider myself to be.

 
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mso489

Preferred Member
Feb 21, 2013
26,268
475
I think people resist calling their interests hobbies, because it sounds like just a pass time rather than an endeavor of some kind. Life style is, to me, sort of an awful word. If you're a free thinker or non-conformist, just take on the mantel and don't attribute it to a generalized life style. Being a hippy wasn't a life style; people loosely categorized that way ranged all the way from hideous criminals to near saints, so it was hardly one life style, more a camouflage for millions of life styles, if you must use the phrase. Under the rubric of free speech, call it a hobby or life style if you choose. It's a habit, activity, and interest engaged by a vast array of people who aren't defined by it and many of whom have little in common otherwise. Part of the beauty of Forums, to bring 'em all together in their startling variety.

 
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hoosierpipeguy

Preferred Member
Jan 28, 2018
2,033
172
I eat. I own a car and drive. I drink water and other beverages. I smoke a pipe. None of those listed prior to smoking a pipe are a hobby. Neither is smoking a pipe. I have amassed a fairly decent number of nice pipes. I guess it could be argued that is a bit of a hobby since 3 to 5 would be adequate.

 

mortonbriar

Preferred Member
Oct 25, 2013
932
35
I guess for me participating in this forum is the hobby part. I like the camaraderie, sharing ideas, poking at things, learning, and hopefully helping others to learn, to enjoy this passion. And, it better be something, given the time I've spent here! :) But the smoking part, for me, not a hobby.
I think this sums up why people are inclined to say that this is not their hobby, that makes sense to me. But I don't see how being active on this forum, and putting money into pipes and cellars, gaining knowledge around the topic etc can be separated completely from the 'just smokin' a pipe'. Maybe it can?, I am willing to be convinced...
Hoosier, we all eat, drink and drive but how many of us join a specific forum around those daily routines?
Isaac

 
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jpmcwjr

Preferred Member
May 12, 2015
13,896
832
Monterey Peninsula
I think this sums up why people are inclined to say that this is not their hobby, that makes sense to me. But I don't see how being active on this forum, and putting money into pipes and cellars, gaining knowledge around the topic etc can be separated completely from the 'just smokin' a pipe'. Maybe it can?, I am willing to be convinced...
Hoosier, we all eat, drink and drive but how many of us join a specific forum around those daily routines?
Isaac
Probably not a lot of us on this forum, but there are active forums for each of those! And some folks are obsessed with eating, or drinking, or driving and owning cars.

But you're right; it may be impossible for many of us to draw a definitive line.

 

chasingembers

Preferred Member
Nov 12, 2014
15,998
873
But I don't see how being active on this forum
I joined to learn maintenance techniques and to get direct answers about restorations. I stay to help the new guys.
putting money into pipes and cellars,
To be able to smoke when tobacco is unaffordable, unavailable, or both.

 

litup

Member
Oct 16, 2015
195
39
Sacramento, CA
I sometimes wonder if we're all using the same definition for "hobby" when these discussions arise. I tend to think that all people on this forum are, in some part at least, hobbyists even though they swear they aren't. But that's because I'm taking the definition literally: an activity or interest pursued for pleasure or relaxation and not as a main occupation.
If that description doesn't fit your pipe smoking then are you just a nicotine addict that derives no pleasure from smoking and has no interest in what you're doing?

 

rigmedic1

Preferred Member
May 29, 2011
3,893
5
For me, pipes and tobacco is a hobby. I enjoy learning about the lore, as well as restoring estates and the methods behind the tobaccos and pipes I enjoy. Pipes and pipe tobacco are part of my lifestyle, but not the entirety of it. Used to be a time when I always had a pipe going, these days it is a leisure time activity. Can no longer smoke at work, in a restaurant, at a bar, etc.

 

warren

Preferred Member
Sep 13, 2013
7,435
202
A simple adjunct to life is how I describe tobacco. Now I've had no nicotine for six weeks, I miss it a bit but, the more oxygen in the blood the better at this time. But, "hobby" denotes, to me, a distraction from life which doesn't fit. An obsession? I can obviously and happily live without the weed. Will I go back to it. Probably. We'll see once I'm healed. Certainly not a life style! Just an incidental part of my life, no different from a doughnut, a hunk of beef or a good book.

 

hugodrax

Senior Member
Jan 24, 2013
311
13
I'm a smoker, or if you prefer, an addict. I have nice pipes and I don't smoke cheap tobacco much, but I smoke multiple bowls a day. Honesty compels me to admit it.

 

chasingembers

Preferred Member
Nov 12, 2014
15,998
873
then are you just a nicotine addict that derives no pleasure from smoking and has no interest in what you're doing?
Why can you not be addict and still enjoy it? I regularly smoke pipes, cigars and cigarettes, chew loose leaf, plugs, twists, and love nasal snuff. I love every moment of it. I just don't get into pipe history, theory, or display. How many threads have you seen where someone asks for high nicotine blends?