I realize that. I was just focusing more on the idea of character, rather then activities that men often partake in and find and interest in doing.
Since, as you said, a lot of stereotypically manly things have nothing to do with building a manly character. (and if they have an influence it is rather unrelated to the thing itself, rather then what it teaches, and what it teaches is up to how it is used and percieved)
There is nothing unmanly in enjoying smoking every so often, it just isn't something that defines a man.
Smoking a pipe is definitely manly. Smoking a cigarette is definitely not.
The whole "manly" thing gets a bit ridiculous.
It's not manly or not manly...it's just smoking. If smoking something is manly, does that mean a 12-year old kid smoking is "manly"?
Bottom line, like alcohol use, none of this is GOOD for you in any way. However, in moderation, many generations throughout many cultures have found benefits of smoking in some situations. Personally I have a cigar a few times a year. I used to smoke cigs in high school and gave it up in my late 20s. When anything besides food, water, oxygen and shelter gets to be something you cannot effectively live without, you've got problems. The risk for addiction is obviously high with tobacco products so you walk a fine line.
My two cents.
“I like to think of fire held in a man's hand. Fire, a dangerous force, tamed at his fingertips. I often wonder about the hours when a man sits alone, watching the smoke of a cigarette, thinking. I wonder what great things have come from such hours. When a man thinks, there is a spot of fire alive in his mind--and it is proper that he should have the burning point of a cigarette as his one expression.” - Ayn Rand
I really don't care for cigarettes, due to the addiction aspect. I can't stand the smell of cigars, but I like pipes quite a bit.
Stupid discussion. Why is it important if you smoke or not? What do you care what others think? An action, clothes, vehicle, build, haircut, shoes, facial hair, or even what anyone else thinks doesn't make you or not make you a man. Smoke if you want don't smoke if you want, smoke pipes, cigars, or ragweed if you want.
People keep getting hung-up on this. I don't think the question was about what makes you a man. It was about whether smoking is behavior that is suitable for a man's man.
"Manly" isn't just things that make a man. Its also things men do, or how men act, or whatever.
is it manli to smoke.?
Then again, I suppose the better question is ... is it manly to spell 'manly' with an 'i'? I wouldn't think so.
You have a good point Jack. I think the answer is in the reason you would be smoking. If you are smoking because you enjoy a cigar, pipe, or cigarette every so often then I'd say yes it is an activity that a man's man would do. If you are smoking just to fit in or to look like a 'man' to others then no it is not an activity that a man's man would do.
I think having a cigar with some buddies is certainly a "manly" activity. However, on the other hand, I do not think that abstaining from smoking is somehow "unmanly."
Manliness isn't everything. If I have to choose between manliness (at least in its symbolic forms, like whether to smoke) and my lungs, no contest.
But there is a manly component. It's doing something that people say you shouldn't, that's an acquired taste, because you want to.
A man isn't defined by his trappings, but by his character, his sense of honesty and integrity.
Anyone who smokes to appear to be a man is a fool. His exterior may persuade some who follow a stereotype that he's a man, but when things get rough, when hard choices and sacrifices have to be made; that's when the real man shines.
I enjoyed cigars for years, but for the pleasure of the experience and taste. Not as a symbol. It's the same reason I never got a tattoo. Once that's on my skin it permanently locks me into a time of who I am. But, I'm always changing and growing. In time that tattoo would become part of who I was and I'd be more proud of who I've become. Why stain myself with a constant reminder that anchors me to a past when I was less than I am now.
Because I want to be healthier I've given up cigars and now use e-cigars. They're not perfect, but enjoy them. Some may scoff, but like everything I do, it's not about impressing others. It's about being honest with myself, which I believe is the first step to being a man.
I love a good pip smoke, in the summer on a weekend with a beer.
I picked up pipe smoking last year, and I do enjoy smoking cigars, but I also smoke cigarettes. Does it make me more or less manly because I enjoy these things? I don't care, I do them because I like them, not because I'm worried about whether or not they'll make me more manly.