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alfredo_buscatti

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My real name is Mike Smith and I haven’t a trace of Italian blood. LatakiaLover asked me several months ago how I came by my alias (alfredo_buscatti) , saying more than a few of his contacts were curious. At this time it seems appropriate to tell.

When my now 18 y/o daughter was an infant, I would hide behind her bedroom door and play peek-a-boo with her, and when I appeared, I would introduce myself as “alfredo buscatti.” When she had established preliminary language and was some 6 to 12 months old, she would say no you are not, you’re daddy. What had happened in the interval was that she had established object permanence; that is, when something disappears behind some barrier, it doesn’t cease to exist. How I thought of this alias is anyone’s guess.

When I took up the pipe VAs and VA/Periques were my focus although I did smoke a bowl of latakia at night for some two years. I had many lat blends. But at the two year mark or so I stopped smoking lat; over time I sold/traded away most of my lat blends. It is rare that I smoke lat now.

About 18 months ago a tobacco transition occurred. I began smoking HOs more than VA or VA/Perique, but I do still cherish a morning bowl of them. The HOs that I love are Dark Flake, Bracken Flake and Irish Flake. In fact all three have made it into my top five, augmented by Cumberland and Escudo: I do so love a nic punch. Haddos, Bufflehead Decoy, Best Brown and McCranie Red Flake are other favorites.

My cellar right now is at ~105 lbs. Given tobacco’s hostile climate, I have no inclination to stop adding to it.

I have a fine-tuned palette which has both its merits and detractions. On the one hand, once I know all I can expect from a blend and taste it in any particular bowl, I feel that that experience is exalting. On the other hand, if a bowl isn’t delivering 100%, I suffer.

I have a palette cleansing technique involving brushing my teeth, gargling with hydrogen peroxide and scraping my tongue. The key, I feel, is keeping my mouth both fresh and sweet, which requires immediately using these techniques after eating, not eating between meals and remaining aware throughout the day when I can taste that the chemistry inside my mouth is souring, getting bitter or otherwise off; at this point mouth-cleansing ensues. Even if I haven’t eaten, the chemistry in my mouth goes south. I wonder at many other pipers who don’t practice these techniques; my guess is that less than 100% is acceptable to them and that they smoke on contentedly.

My 6 1/2 years on the Knox Board can be broken down into three periods:

1. apprentice - asking many, many questions
2. journeyman - answering others’ questions, writing reviews of tobaccos that I felt I thoroughly understood
3. silence. I have gone silent this last year as I feel I don’t have much to say. Whereas I in some sense I used to live to participate on the Board, I am now more detached and often don’t login for two or three days at a time.

Nevertheless I’m delighted to be a member of this Board.
 

Slow Puffs

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Thank you Mike for sharing your thoughts. You are one of the most talented "reviewers" that I have read and your comments are always treasurered.

It's interesting how you chose your "handle" and especially delightful that it came from an experience with your daughter as an infant... 18 years ago or so. That is really nice to know.

I wish I had your discipline for keeping the mouth receptive to flavours...

-Paul :D
 

slartie

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What a nice way to clue us all in. Welcome Mike. I will be looking forward to reading your posts.

~105 lbs .. holy smokes (pun intended) .. I'm about 80 lbs behind. Kudos.
 

showme1or2

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alfredo_buscatti":58bovhkh said:
I have a palette cleansing technique involving brushing my teeth, gargling with hydrogen peroxide and scraping my tongue. The key, I feel, is keeping my mouth both fresh and sweet, which requires immediately using these techniques after eating, not eating between meals and remaining aware throughout the day when I can taste that the chemistry inside my mouth is souring, getting bitter or otherwise off; at this point mouth-cleansing ensues. Even if I haven’t eaten, the chemistry in my mouth goes south. I wonder at many other pipers who don’t practice these techniques; my guess is that less than 100% is acceptable to them and that they smoke on contentedly.
I'd say your pretty close to right on the money here, Mike. When I started smoking a pipe, just not burning my tongue help the flavor of the tobacco a lot. I'm primarily into latakia blends now and after reading about your techniques I realize I am probably using the heavy lat as a crutch to cover mouth chemistry, lingering after meal flavors, and even the ocassional less-than-pristine pipe.

I think I'll pay closer attention now to oral hygiene and see if I can't detect the subtle nuances of Frog Morton. Heck, even if I can't detect anything new it won't hurt anything right?

Thanks for posting.
 

Tony Ferrill

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Thanks,Mike!I've read your posts at Knox for years now,and always wondered at the man behind them.Glad you're here!
Tony
 

Puff Daddy

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Welcome Mike! Thrilled to see you here!

Love the story about your screen name! Too cool 8)
 

Vito

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Signore Alfredo:

Things just got a lot more homey 'round here. You were a mainstay on the KCC board for years, and that automatically makes you a valued member of this community from the get-go, in my book.

Your curiosity may have been temporarily sated by the knowledge that led to your acquiring that 105-pound stash, but one of the greatest parts of this noble pastime is the fact that there's always more to learn for those who have the burn. Enjoy Phase 3 as the relatively quiescent interlude it has come to be, but be sure to leave room on your hard drive for Phase 4, and Phase 5, and Phase 6, and... :arrow:

Glad you're here, amigo!

Vito :joker:
 

Dock

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An excellent introduction Mike and it's great to have you onboard.I honestly thought your real name was Alfredo :) I can sympathize with your posting history as I went through something similar on ASP(alt.smokers.pipes). When it became over run with antis and boneheads I fell silent.When it got even worse,I left all together.Boards change over time,some for the better and some for the worse...

Best,
Dock (my real name,honestly)
:pipe:
 

Justpipes

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Glad to see ya Mike! Looking forward to seeing you Friday morning.

Mark
 

gospelman

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Mike,
I've always enjoyed reading your posts, and consider you among the most knowledgable brothers from the Knox board (which I will still visit).

Hope you'll continue to share your knowledge.

Mike
 
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