Tuesday, April 17
Tower Club Bar
Tuesday, May 8
Tuesday, May 22
Tower Club Bar
Tuesday, June 4
Speaker: Ted Foss
About the Cigar Society
ONE OF THE OLDEST
AND greatest traditions of the University Club is the
discussion of intellectual, social, legal, artistic, historical,
scientific, musical, theatrical, and philosophical issues in the
company of educated, bright, and appropriately provocative
individuals, all under the beneficent influence of substantial
amounts of tobacco and spirits.
Club Cigar Society embraces this tradition and extends it
with its fortnightly Informal Smokers, monthly
University Series lectures, and quarterly Cigar Society Dinners,
in which cigars, and from time to time pipes and cigarettes,
appear as an important component of our version of the classical
Smokers meet at the round table in the Tower Club bar.
There are no reservations or cover charges, and each member
signs his own chit for drinks a lá carte. Sometimes a
theme is published in
advance, but the table talk always strays.
The format of the Cigar Society University Series
includes cocktails at 5:15pm, a lecture or reading starting at
5:30 sharp for about thirty minutes, and discussion and more
cocktails to follow.
Premium open bar and light snacks are included in University
Series events; members sign a chit for $30 and guests may pay $40
(inclusive) in cash.
Club and Tower Club members and their guests are invited to all
Cigar Society events.
To be included in
the Cigar Society's mailing list, write to the Secretary, Curtis
Tuckey, at email@example.com.
Is smoking allowed here?
Smoker, Tuesday, April 17, Tower Club, 5:00
APRIL 17th is the 610th anniversary of
Geoffrey Chaucer's first reading of the
Canterbury Tales, at the court
of Richard II. Some Chaucer specialists have also identified this date (in
1387, when the yonge sonne / Hath in the Ram his halfe cours
yronne) as when the book's (fictional) pilgrimage to
Canterbury starts. (See
b for a confusing discussion.)
We will observe the date by relating
stories of pilgrimages of all sorts, at the round table in the Tower
Club bar. Among others, David O'Connor will recount his
recent pilgrimage, with nyne and twenty in a compaignye, to Dublin for St.
Patrick's day, Curtis Tuckey will tell stories about a pilgrimage
(taken in March and April with Cigar Society regulars Edward Bronson
and Victor Tutiven) to
the Lost City of the Incas, and Clifford Yuknis will
describe his spring-break pilgrimage to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, to
oversee his substantial investment in a
Gone Wild franchise. Drinks are a lá carte;
no need to RSVP. Bring your own cigars.
has also been associated with the first day of
additionally with the onset of Noah's
Fewer calculations are required to show that on this date
addressed the assembly at the
Diet of Worms,
refusing to recant. Cigar Society regular and Lutheran scholar Douglas Johnson will be
on hand to discuss the significance of these dates.
April 17th is also the birthday of Cigar
Society irregular Steve Dickman, who might be on hand with a few
cigars to celebrate the birth of his second son (last week).
A lively topic for discussion might also
be the Smoke Free Illinois Act (see below). John Walbaum, who
has written an article about the effects of second-hand smoke, and
Mark Warden, ardent defender of personal liberties in this regard,
are invited to hold forth.
Tobacco, some say, is
a potent narcotic,
That rules half the world in a way quite despotic;
So, to punish him well for his wicked and merry tricks,
We'll burn him forthwith, as they used to do heretics.
ANONYMOUS 19th C
Chapter 1: Lines 1-15 of 860
Here bygynneth the Book of the tales of Caunterbury.
1 Whan that Aprille,
with hise shoures soote,
The droghte of March hath perced to the roote
3 And bathed every
veyne in swich licour,
Of which vertu engendred is the flour;
5 Whan Zephirus eek
with his swete breeth
6 Inspired hath in
every holt and heeth
The tendre croppes, and the yonge sonne
8 Hath in the Ram his
halfe cours yronne,
And smale foweles maken melodye,
10 That slepen al the
nyght with open eye-
11 So priketh hem
Nature in hir corages-
Thanne longen folk to goon on pilgrimages
13 And palmeres for to
seken straunge strondes
To ferne halwes, kowthe in sondry londes;
15 And specially, from
every shires ende
16 Of Engelond, to
Caunturbury they wende,
The hooly blisful martir for the seke
18 That hem hath
holpen, whan that they were seeke.
19 Bifil that in that
seson, on a day,
Southwerk at the Tabard as I lay,
21 Redy to wenden on
Caunterbury, with ful devout corage,
23 At nyght were come
into that hostelrye
Wel nyne and twenty in a compaignye
25 Of sondry folk, by
26 In felaweshipe, and
pilgrimes were they alle,
That toward Caunterbury wolden ryde.
In our last meeting
our last meeting Chicago author
Jack Zimmerman read from his
novel, Gods of the Andes, set in baseball-crazy southside Chicago
in the late nineteen-fifties. Several members had to miss out, being on
their own pilgrimage to the (Peruvian) Andes.
(foreground, left) celebrated his birthday
(April 3) by getting
the best of the open bar (or was it the other way around?). "All I
can say is that I have taken more out of alcohol than alcohol has taken
out of me," Mr. O'Connor said later.
(Photos by Dale I. Lenig.)
in the News
the Illinois Senate approved
SB0500 "The Smoke Free Illinois Act" (full
text), by a vote of 34-23. The Illinois House is still
considering the identical
HB0246. This bill is very broadly worded and prohibits smoking
almost everywhere. The prohibitions are based on the Surgeon
General's conclusions that "there is no risk-free level of exposure to
are clearly defined and explicitly included in the ban. The only
exceptions are: private residences, retail tobacco stores, and some
sleeping rooms in nursing homes and hotels. Governor Blagojevich
has not said whether he will sign the bill, but it is overwhelmingly
likely that he will sign some form of it. There is still time for
these bills to be amended.
As I puff this mild Havana, and its ashes
I feel my courage gather and my
I will smoke, and I will praise you,
my cigar, and I will light you
With tobacco-phobic pamphlets by the learnéd prigs who fight you!
ARTHUR GUNDRY (1895)
next meeting: University
Series, Tuesday, May 8, Tower Club, 5:15 pm
Charles Wheelan, club member and lecturer in public policy at the
University of Chicago, will talk about his forthcoming book, An
Introduction to Public Policy. Cocktails at 5:15, lecture at
5:30, discussion to follow at 6:00.
$30 includes open bar and light hors d'oeuvres. Bring your own cigars. RSVP to Laura
Herold, Tower Club Manager.
Wheelan has a PhD in public policy from the
C's Harris Graduate School of Public Policy Studies and a Master
of Public Affairs from Princeton. He is the author of
Naked Economics, a book that the Chicago Tribune
described as "clear, concise, informative, and (gasp) witty."
He also wrote a series of essays to accompany Terry Evans's photographs
for their recent book,
Revealing Chicago. He is currently the author of a regular
The Naked Economist, and is a regular contributor to 848 on WBEZ.
University Club Cigar Society
Officers for 2007.
David O'Connor, King. Gerald I. Bauman, Treasurer. Curtis
Tuckey, Secretary. J. Douglas Johnson, Liaison to Chicago
Croquet Club (Honorary).
Jeffrey Dean, Chair of the Subcommittee concerning Pipe Smoking.
Alexander Sherman, Metropolitan Philosopher. Thomas S. O'Brien,
Stentorian. John H. Nelson, Herald.