You don’t see this much anymore


There is one thing in this image of an U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Park Ranger I made recently that is very uncommon today. Do you see it? Yes, the pipe. I remember when I entered the Army in 1963 (yes, Army Corps of Engineers) and I’d say just about 100% of us smoked, not chewed, tobacco of some sort. Most used cigarettes, but there were many who chose a cigar or pipe. I smoked cigarettes but experimented from time to time with a pipe. I recall one such time when I overdid it with the pipe, by smoking bowl after bowl of tobacco because I never could keep the darn thing to stay lit. As a result, I burned the tip of my tongue…so much so that I never put a pipe near my mouth again. I did the same thing with cigarettes in the mid-1970s. Regardless of the clearly obvious health hazards of tobacco use, there is something nostalgic about seeing someone smoking a pipe. It looks so relaxing, and like this park ranger taking a break from his work activities, seems to convey being a peace with himself and the world.

As an aside, I made this image at Martinsville Speedway during race weekend April 5th. The park ranger was there along with others who had set up a display promoting usage of the local Corps of Engineers recreational facility at Philpott Lake Dam and Reservoir near Bassett, Virginia. Wonderful place to visit.

One reply to “You don’t see this much anymore

  1. I did the chewing tobacco, then got married and start a pipe. Many years, never did the cigarettes. On occasion I still enjoy good cigar especially when flyfishing.

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