Good Sin

I asked my friend, "What are your three favorite pleasures in life?" and she replied, "A martini before and a cigarette after."
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In a decade of invigorated zeal towards healthy living, which has us trading in our cigarettes and martini glasses for Feng Shui and green tea, nearly all of which is known collectivley as 'sin' - namely drinking, smoking and screwing - has fallen into disrepute. Therefore it's refreshing and not a little surprising to some across a book which so brazenly, and eloquently, eulogizes those unfashionable mortal arts of pleasure and abandon. A delightful selection of fiction, essays and poetry from great writers (Henry Miller, Bukowski, Dorothy Parker, Don Marquis, Anais Nin, among others) this book is a must read for anyone with a drop of self-indulgent hedonism in their blood.
To the Princess, it was an enigma why anyone would smoke, yet the answer seems simple enough when we station ourselves at that profound interface of nature and culture formed when people take something from the natural world and incorporate it into their bodies.
Three of the four elements are shared by all creatures, but fire was a gift to humans alone. Smoking cigarettes is as intimate as we can become with fire without immediate excruciation. Every smoker is an embodiment of Prometheus, stealing fire from the gods and bringing it on back home. We smoke to capture the power of the sun, to pacify Hell, to identify with the primordial spark, to feed on the marrow of the volcano. It's not the tobacco we're after but the fire. When we smoke we are performing a version of the fire dance, a ritual as ancient as lightning.
Tom Robbins, 'Still Life With Woodpecker'
in '
Drinking Smoking and Screwing - Great Writers on Good Times'

1 Comment:

  1. ring said...
    I would gave up both of them if you would pubblish your forgotten printer's love poem.
    It seems that Tom Robbins was trying to write a poem too. I guess we smoke to become the volcano itself. Full of lava. Fearlessness. Deadlineless.

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