Today our family celebrated our fifth and last child's graduation from High School. Elliot's older brothers have developed a hankering for cigars so I joined them (again). I gotta admit, there are three things about cigar smoking I find pleasantly otherworldly: 1) sitting still--it's hard to run around with lit stogies, 2) shooting the breeze in the back yard with guys age 18-29 --Vicki and I have great sons and daughters who hang with great guys, and 3) joining the ranks of great smokers of church history--Chas. Spurgeon, Soren Kierkegaard, R. C. Sproul, C. S. Lewis, and Gandalf. When I was a pastor I'd quip, "Smoking won't send you to hell; just make you smell like you've been there." I'm now eating my words. Apparently the smell of cigar smoke isn't as vile as I'd been lead to believe.
I also learned that my sons realized too late that--due to dad's lack of sense of smell--they could have smoked like chimneys all through their teen years and I'd never have known it. They prudently waited until legal age before lighting up.
Lennon and McCartney taught me to, "Curse Sir Walter Raleigh he was such a stupid get." Ronald Regan taught me, "Smoking Hippies dressed like Tarzan, looked like Jane, and smelled like Cheetah." Mark Driscoll taught me, "Cigar smoking + Christianity = Holy smokes!" (I made up that last quote). W. Churchill, T. Soprano, and D. DeVito taught me, "Close but no cigar!" And the young guys in my life taught me, "Clip off the ends, spit a lot, and drink lots of water."
Congratulations, Elliot! We're proud of you. We light up these tightly wrapped and finely aged Dominican Republic beauties in your honor.