Cigar Lifestyle

The Holiday Cigar: It’s How I Survive Christmas

I’m Just a Cigar Guy, Trying to Make It Through the Holidays.

Ahhhh… Cigar smoking and the holidays – they go together like cigars and beer… cigars and poker… cigars and whiskey… cigars and steak… cigars and basically everything… hey, are you noticing a pattern here?

The holiday season – Thanksgiving through New Year is supposed to be a joyous time of selfless giving and thanks, but in reality, it’s a six-week pain in the ash for anyone who’s just trying to get through life with half a smile on your face. While I do enjoy turkey day with its over-the-top gluttony and hours of plentiful pigskin, it’s no secret that I “used to” be a fan of Christmas, but the commercialization that Chuck himself was confused about in A Charlie Brown Christmas has become the reality for so many. (See my two Cigar Advisor holiday articles from 2013 – Turkey Day in the USA and The Ranting Lunacy of a Christmas Curmudgeon will clue you in, in case you missed them.)

It all started this year when the local mall was playing Christmas carols on October 1st and several stores already had faux snow and cheesy plastic reindeer displayed throughout the aisles. Is it just me or are the retailers bending us over for our yuletide enemas earlier and earlier each year? Pretty soon Christmas in July will be the reality as luxury cars with massive red bows will continually remind us how much us commoners are up to our jingle balls in debt.

Then there’s the fact that every damned store opens on Thanksgiving and both my kids had to work at their mall jobs at 6pm. Thank you corporate retail America for ruining our family bonding – I mean, you couldn’t wait ‘til midnight for all the loonies to line up for a mile in the freezing cold so they could get their 7 year old a more expensive phone than I have? Hey, wanna know how I spent my Black Friday?… With my two best buddies, Leccia Black and Johnnie Walker Black.

Okay Zman… take a deep breath, brother… in through the nose and out through the mouth. Better yet, how about I just light up a nice cigar. Yeah, that seems to be my answer for everything, but I’m sure my fellow leaf lovers will agree that nothing soothes the nerves and calms a turbulent brain more than a solid hour with your favorite hand-rolled happy stick.

I look at it this way… when my wife and daughter are in a funk, they go shopping for shoes, and like a holier than thou excursion to Lourdes, they come back completely healed (pun most definitely intended). So whenever I’ve got that ‘not so fresh” feeling, I’ll head immediately to the Famous Smoke Shop website while drenching my keyboard with drool as I writhe in wanton tobacco lust for all my favorite brands. Then, of course, I will head to the humidor and rummage through my cavernous collection, attempting to choose that one cigar that will make everything in my world better.

Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Hanukkah, Christmas, New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Day all shoved into a 42 day window… to quote that famous blockhead, “Good Grief” that’s a lotta stress to put upon a guy who just wants to make an honest living and take a nice vacation every once in a blue moon. Okay, there are those of you who will point out that I’m on never-ending vacation as I smoke cigars and write about them for a living. But I want you to know that I do this for all of you, selflessly and with your love for the leaf always on my mind.

So, if you’re anything like me and feel like Mr. Scrooge got a bad rap, just pick yourself out a really nice holiday cigar and let the wife know that, no, you didn’t go to Jared, but you paid the electric, gas and mortgage. Light, heat and a nice hot shower are so underrated.

Tommy Zman Zarzecki

Tommy Zman Zarzecki


Tommy Zman, is an obsessive enjoyer of life’s leafy pleasures. Growing up in the bowels of northern New Jersey, parented by an eccentric Polish father and a neurotic Italian mother, what else could this man possibly be other than a humorist? ZMan’s a real throwback to a time when men were kings of the castle and smoking a cigar in public didn’t label you an outcast and a pariah. He’s an old–school down to earth guy - but when it comes to p.c. tyranny and nanny-state legislature, he’ll draw his sword and swing for the fences. Tommy gathered a faithful following as a longtime feature writer at Cigar Magazine, and his testosterone laden FaceBook community, CROMAG NATION™ is truly the last great bastion for Men’s Men.

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