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 ...you clean pipes with 'em.

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George Kaplan

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Age : 47
Location : Kalamazoo, MI
Registration date : 2012-01-07

PostSubject: ...you clean pipes with 'em.   Sat Jan 28, 2012 6:20 pm

A funny thing happened to me today.
This morning I had a (non-smoking) friend over for coffee. As we sat and chatted in my living room, I noticed her gaze repeatedly wander over a bookshelf where I keep an odd pound or two of tinned and jarred tobacco, half a dozen or so pipes, and other odds and ends. In mid-conversation she stopped and picked up an old cigar box half full of pipe cleaners. I thought she was going to say something about the flask of spirits buried in the box. Instead, she held up a handful of pipe cleaners.
"Why do you have these?" she asked.
I just gave her my best Mr. Spock raised eyebrow and stared at her; glanced at the pipe shelf, then back at her.
Long pause.
"What?" she said, getting nervous.
"You know I smoke a pipe, right?" I answered.
"Yeah. So?"
Another long pause.
Suddenly it dawned on her and she burst out laughing, turning bright red.
"Oh my God!" she said, "I've always know what these were called, but it never occurred to me until right now they had an actual use. I just remember doing art projects with them in grade school."

I have vague memories of my grandad smoking a pipe, and he always gave me pipe cleaners from his desk to play with when I visited, so I must have made that connection pretty early. Some of us were not so lucky, it seems. I wonder how many kids have grown up playing with pipe cleaners without ever wondering why they were called that.
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Aristokles



Location : Pittsburgh, PA
Registration date : 2010-10-02

PostSubject: Re: ...you clean pipes with 'em.   Sat Jan 28, 2012 6:35 pm

"Story of the Month" nomination!
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Doc Manhattan

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Age : 39
Location : Land of Steady Habits
Registration date : 2008-05-26

PostSubject: Re: ...you clean pipes with 'em.   Sat Jan 28, 2012 6:53 pm

A friend who teaches first grade told me the coloful, arts-n-crafts ones aren't even labeled as "pipe cleaners" anymore. They're "chenille stems." I don't think it's a PC thing... it's just as you say, the reference no longer rings a bell.
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George Kaplan

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Age : 47
Location : Kalamazoo, MI
Registration date : 2012-01-07

PostSubject: Re: ...you clean pipes with 'em.   Sat Jan 28, 2012 7:27 pm

On that note, Doc, I wonder if kids today have any idea what they're saying when they "hang up" at the end of a phone conversation.
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shootist51



Location : Indianapolis, Indiana
Registration date : 2007-12-28

PostSubject: Re: ...you clean pipes with 'em.   Sat Jan 28, 2012 9:04 pm

I had to laugh! A couple of years ago I found myself on the road and I had forgotten my pipe cleaners. I stopped in a small town along the interstate and found a Walgreens drug store. Walgreens at home, at that time, carried some OTC blends as well as pipe supplies, so I figured it was the best place to look.

As I looked over the counter, where such items are usually stocked, a salesgirl asked if she could help. I told her I was looking for pipe cleaners and she said they were located about half way down aisle 7. A few seconds later I found myself looking at the shelf stocked with Drano, etc. Suspect
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monbla256

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Age : 71
Location : DFW Metroplex, Texas
Registration date : 2012-01-15

PostSubject: Re: ...you clean pipes with 'em.   Sat Jan 28, 2012 9:09 pm

Along those same lines recently I was at my local Walgreen's checking out at the counter and looked up behind the girl checking me out and saw a 3 pack of Reem-n-Clean bristle "Pipe Cleaners" and asked for a pack. She stared at me for a minute, then said " pipe cleaners ?, what are those? I don't think we have any". I pointed to the pckg hanging on the display wall with lighters and a few Dr. Grabow's which was labeled in all caps, "PIPE CLEANERS" ! She got some for me and asked "what are these for?" Razz I guess I should have asked for "chenile" stems Rolling Eyes
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ADK_Pipe

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Location : Adirondacks, New York
Registration date : 2011-10-11

PostSubject: Re: ...you clean pipes with 'em.   Sat Jan 28, 2012 9:53 pm

Chenile stems... Oy!

I wonder how many things like that will lose their meaning over the next generation. It's funny how I notice little things like that now and then. PC and what not.

I never thought of them as anything other than pipe cleaners! Smile
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Kyle Weiss

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Location : Reno, NV
Registration date : 2011-09-18

PostSubject: Re: ...you clean pipes with 'em.   Sat Jan 28, 2012 11:52 pm

A friend of mine grabbed a bunch of my cleaners and proceeded to start decorating her earrings with them.

I told her she looked like a total jackass.

She didn't care, we went out drinkin' anyway, and now she owes me for half a bag of pipe cleaners.

Laughing

Cool
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Richard Burley

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Location : North Coast NY
Registration date : 2011-04-09

PostSubject: Re: ...you clean pipes with 'em.   Sun Jan 29, 2012 1:44 am

Correction, Kyle, above. That's a jillass. They're all over the place.
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Kyle Weiss

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Location : Reno, NV
Registration date : 2011-09-18

PostSubject: Re: ...you clean pipes with 'em.   Sun Jan 29, 2012 2:36 am

Richard Burley wrote:
Correction, Kyle, above. That's a jillass. They're all over the place.

She's a pretty mighty gal though, for a straight woman, anyway. One I'd happily rely on to have my back in a bad situation with ne'er-do-wells... Laughing Plus, she'd kick my ass.

Cool
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dshpipes

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Age : 33
Location : Durham, NC
Registration date : 2011-03-06

PostSubject: Re: ...you clean pipes with 'em.   Sun Jan 29, 2012 10:41 am

@ Kaplan: Great story! I had almost the exact same experience with a dear friend of mine.

@ Kyle: Did she loan you her drill?
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Kyle Weiss

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Location : Reno, NV
Registration date : 2011-09-18

PostSubject: Re: ...you clean pipes with 'em.   Sun Jan 29, 2012 2:13 pm

UberHuberMan wrote:
@ Kyle: Did she loan you her drill?

...I'm afraid this has connotation beyond what I'm able to grasp, but if it means anything, yes, she would, if the need arose...

Cool
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dshpipes

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Age : 33
Location : Durham, NC
Registration date : 2011-03-06

PostSubject: Re: ...you clean pipes with 'em.   Sun Jan 29, 2012 2:54 pm

Kyle Weiss wrote:
UberHuberMan wrote:
@ Kyle: Did she loan you her drill?

...I'm afraid this has connotation beyond what I'm able to grasp, but if it means anything, yes, she would, if the need arose...

Cool

I was afraid that reference might be a bit obscure. It's a self reference from the thread "My First Pipe: In Process." It's recent so I'm not surprised if you haven't seen it yet. Razz
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Blue Max

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Location : Earth - mostly
Registration date : 2010-05-10

PostSubject: Re: ...you clean pipes with 'em.   Sun Jan 29, 2012 4:36 pm

I don't recall the actual story but I've had that happen to me too. Watching a face turn from utter confusion to an absolute knowing only to be replaced with extreme embarassment was priceless.

Funny thing was then I had to show them how they were used.
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Natch

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Age : 66
Location : foothills of the Ozarks
Registration date : 2007-12-21

PostSubject: Re: ...you clean pipes with 'em.   Sun Jan 29, 2012 9:00 pm

Doc Manhattan wrote:
A friend who teaches first grade told me the coloful, arts-n-crafts ones aren't even labeled as "pipe cleaners" anymore. They're "chenille stems." I don't think it's a PC thing... it's just as you say, the reference no longer rings a bell.

Those multi-colored chenille stems don't work for spit as real pipe cleaners. They're made of synthotic something and totally non-absorbant, which kind of kills the whole idea of using them to clean a pipe.

But they sure are pretty. Rolling Eyes

Natch
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Wet Dottle

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Location : Littleton, CO
Registration date : 2008-02-27

PostSubject: Re: ...you clean pipes with 'em.   Sun Jan 29, 2012 11:38 pm

Sometime ago I went to a local cigar and pipe store and bought a few packs of pipe cleaners. The salesperson asked if they were for a school project for my kid. Shocked

P.S.- There was no kid with me...
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Kyle Weiss

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Location : Reno, NV
Registration date : 2011-09-18

PostSubject: Re: ...you clean pipes with 'em.   Mon Jan 30, 2012 2:25 pm

[quote="UberHuberMan"
I was afraid that reference might be a bit obscure. It's a self reference from the thread "My First Pipe: In Process." It's recent so I'm not surprised if you haven't seen it yet. Razz[/quote]

Okay NOW I know why this is funny. Laughing Believe me, my manliness is always threatened, for better or worse: undaunted, it'll take more than a power drill borrowed from a girl. (...those who followed some less-than-recent Rubber Room discussions should find that somewhat amusing... heh...)

Oh, the layers of inside jokes run thick...

Cool
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