Morgan Pipes: This BlackJack Scores 21!


18tolkienpic-superJumboAs soon as humanity was able to harness fire I am sure smoking tobacco soon followed. This long tradition is flourishing today due to amazing craftsmen that are forging traditional tobacco pipes with high grade materials.

History reflects a variety of men that enjoyed a tobacco pipe as a luxury and relaxation. And for many it became an iconic symbol of sophistication. J.R.R. Tolkien (left) the author of the Lord of Stalin pipethe Rings famously enjoyed the pipe. This leisurely activity was not only reserved for the literary minds but also dictators such as Joseph Stalin (right) partook of the pipe.

The pipe is a DIY for tobacco connoisseur’s because you are able to blend various types of tobacco to produce a unique and enjoyable blend. Maybe you prefer a sweeter cherry flavor with a dash of vanilla or you may prefer a strong whiskey blend. Either way you can customize and experiment to your taste.

Recently we received a great pipe from Chris Morgan owner of Morgan Pipes and let me tell you I am impressed. He sent the BlackJack series Shape 20 that is made of briar wood “which is a tumor-like outgrowth that develops between root and stem of white heath (Erica arborea)” This special wood is heat resistant and ideal for pipe making.  The pipe has a nickel silver band and acrylic stem. The construction is solid and well made.

Morgan pipe side viewThe pipe is handmade in Italy to Mr. Morgans demanding specifications with a sandblasted carnauba wax finish that provides just the right amount of matte. Although the pipe is black there is a great contrast with the nickel band and shiny acrylic stem. There is an imprinted Morgan Pipes rabbit on the pipe and model name. Every nook and groove of the pipe declares that it is handmade and produces tons of character. The pipe smokes wonderfully and every draw is smooth and enjoyable.

A major upside to smoking a pipe, besides producing your own blends and looking hell a Morgan pipe top viewcool, is that depending on the depth of the bowl and how much you pack it with you can enjoy on average 30-45 min smoke and up to 1.5 hours.

We highly recommend Morgan Pipes BlackJack Shape 20. All great products begin and end with the owner/craftsmen.  Have no doubt that every detail of the pipe is a reflection of Mr. Morgan’s passion.

In addition to the handmade pipes from Italy there are highly sought after custom one-off pipes that Mr. Morgan produces in the USA on a commission basis. Another great product is the briar cigar that is really impressive. We hope to review more products from Morgan Pipes so stay tuned!  On a personal note I really admire Mr. Morgan because in a day and age where people can become fake or a personality he is genuine and real.

Mr. M
Psalm 30:2-3

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The Modern Renaissance Man part I: The Barber Shop


The modern renaissance man is multi-faceted and contains many key components that vitruvian new design instawill be written about in subsequent articles. The first subject we will breach is men and barber shops.

If you really think about it mankind has needed to address grooming issues since the beginning of time. Whether it is shaving or getting a haircut men need to differentiate themselves from women. Grooming is interlocked with identity and self-expression.

While cultures may set the trends it is the barber that makes the grooming style possible. Not only is the barber shop a place were grooming needs are met but it is also a manly social club conducive to all things manly.

The barber and shop is a place of reverence and trust because men are transformed from a scroungy appearance to something they can take pride in. The fresh low taper or high cocksbarber instaand tight can give an extra boost of confidence.

The barber shop has always been a place were fish tales can be spun and lives can be shared. Until this point in history there wasn’t a threat of a Tweet or “post” going out that eluded to what was said. There should be no room for gossip or rumor mongers in a barber shop. The security and confidentiality of clients is paramount.

A barber’s job is not only to produce the best haircut possible but also be the best sounding board and interpreter of style. Although barbers may have “trophies” there is no perfect cut. I do not want the “fastest fade or taper” but instead prefer the best one possible.

The modern renaissance man must understand and appreciate the vital institution of the local barber shop. Not only is it a historical institution but also a manly tradition that must continue. After all, where else will you get a haircut? A salon?

Mr. M

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Every Man Can Be A Gentle-Man


Previously we wrote a declaration on what a Gentleman is and wanted to provide a little more information. Today we want to encourage and reinforce the idea that every man can be a Gentle-Man.

I understand that the word is spelled Gentleman but to emphasize the two main principles I have hyphenated it.Gentleness does not mean being weak or feminine but relates to the fact of knowing when and how to act with initiative and when to be chill. Balancing the two is what creates a proper disposition.

Being a Gentle-Man does not stem from class, race, social standing, economics, culture or hairstyle!

not every man is a gentleman insta

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How To Look and Be Tip Top

There are many notions, ideas, and beliefs about sayings that have been tip top older genthanded down from previous generations but one in particular has really stood out and has become increasingly relevant and that is “tip-top”. You hear it spoken in various contexts and they center on appearance. According to the dictionary the word was first used in 1702 and denoted the highest point. The word has grown and includes excellent, first-rate, and very well. The term is used as a noun, adjective and adverb. The grammatical categories really blow the idea wide open and give a clearer picture of the word.

In the noun form the word denotes that something is at the highest point, for example the very tip-top of the mountain is 7,000 feet. In this regard there is a lower point in comparison Tip top mountainswith the highest “tip-top”. As an adjective the word means very good, excellent or great, for example the classic car is in tip-top shape. In this regard it is not low or poor condition. In the adverb form the term means very well which is indicative of action that brought about the condition, for example when Johnny uses pomade to comb his hair it is tip-top.
Now that the formalities of the word are out of the way we can plug this into men’s style, grooming and life.

There is more than just a technical meaning because it is a life-philosophy. No matter how you look at it, if you incorporate this philosophy into your life there must be confidence, pride and passion.The basis for being and looking tip-top is style, grooming, and life. The particulars are to be defined by the individual because there is no cookie cutter template, we are all unique. Whether it is going to a barber shop every two weeks or polishing your dress shoes there is a realization that your are the primary focus and need to feel and look like a million bucks! A man does not have to spend a month’s wages on shoes and a suit because denim and boots from the thrift store can achieve the same tip-tip top shoestop condition. The foundation is taking the time and extra effort to achieve a heightened and/or improved look.

My father taught me tip-top meant that a man should look good from the tip of his shoes to the top of his head. In order to look tip-top a conscious effort must be made to maintain a style, grooming and life but not just superficially because the conduct and behavior would truly depict if you were tip-top or in poor condition.Every man has a responsibility to pass on this tradition to younger generations but never in arrogance, always in humility. It can be something as simple as how to properly match socks with dress shoes and pants or how to choose the pomade that best suits your hair.

Mr. M

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An Old Curious Saying, “The Word Of A Gentleman Is As Good As His Bond”


The great author Charles Dickens (1812-1870) wrote a phrase that echoes and casts a shadow upon all who read it in The Old Curiosity Shop (1840-1841), “the word of a Gentleman is as good as his bond.” The statement declares that words spoken by a Gentleman have value and are binding but tragically today words become an audible sound that never make it into practice or action.

A Gentleman’s word is binding because there is value in what is said but only when actions follow. The idea of a bond is something that you are obligated to fulfill. For instance, if you tell a friend that you will be at their house at 5 p.m. and don’t show up, you have demonstrated your words do not have any value.

A Gentleman’s word reflects who you are and the actions will prove whether you are trustworthy. Individuals start business arrangements with the mere exchange of words, ideas and concepts, trust and security is the foundation to forming relationships. If the person proves to be untrustworthy by their actions they have proved their meaningless value. Their word cannot be valued and trusted.

In the technologically advanced era of emails, facebook, twitter, text messages and anything else that can be used to communicate with others, the spoken and written word needs to be a Gentleman’s bond. If we fail to meet our obligations then words will be meaningless sounds and relationships will be broken.

Men of tradition and distinction have upheld their word by binding themselves to what they say. Never over commit and fulfill your obligations because only then will you demonstrate that you are a Gentleman whose word is his bond.

Mr. M


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What Is A Gentleman?


This article was not scheduled to be published but I realized I have not discussed the topic of being a Gentleman.The topic is important because our readers come from diverse backgrounds and from all over the world. In future articles we will explore the topic in depth but for now a declaration is necessary.

January 28, 2013


We believe a True Gentleman considers and values their Style, Grooming and Life. Our motto is Modern Men of Tradition and Distinction and no matter where you have been or what you have done you can be a Gentleman.

A Gentleman can be full of tattoos and on the other hand have virgin skin. A Gentleman can be bald and does not need to have a college contour. A Gentleman can rock a pair of $15 wingtips from the local thrift store and also own a pair of $300 Allen Edmonds shoes. A Gentleman can be the town barber and on the other hand a mechanic or great surgeon.

A Gentleman can be Rockabilly, Psychobilly, Cumbiabilly or whatever other Billy! A Gentleman can be Punk, Hipster, Rocksteady, Ska, Northern Soul, Ragtime, Swing, Big Band, Jazz, R & B and whatever style or music you can imagine or conjure up.

A Gentleman is not based in social status.

A Gentleman is not based in culture.

A Gentleman is not based in ancestry or birthrights.

A Gentleman is not defined by wealth or possessions.

A Gentleman is not defined by music.

A Gentleman is not defined by apparel.

A Gentleman is who you are and what you do in life, plain and simple. More importantly you can be a Gentleman!

Mr. M



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Opening Doors

Since the blog’s about page has the timeless photo of a gentleman from the 1950’s graciously opening the car door for his female companion and her thankful reaction I figured the first entry should be about the tradition of men opening doors for women. Can the simple act of opening the door really be the pathway to becoming a woman’s knight in shiny armor?

Obviously anyone with two arms can open the door for themselves but when a Gentleman goes out of his way to open the door it signifies something that transcends the simple physical act.

I have noticed that more mature (older) people open and hold the door open for others to walk through. So what is up with men of a younger generation? Do they find it obsolete and archaic? I am sure if their CEO or manager was approaching the door they would make sure to hold the door open. The reason they would hold the door open is out of respect (possibly fear).

So then, if you respect your girlfriend, wife and anyone else that is approaching the door you should go out of your way to armor up and get your polish rags out and hold the door open. This simple gesture will demonstrate respect, care, courtesy and thoughtfulness. It does not matter whether the other party acknowledges your Gentlemanly act you should do it for yourself. Trust me you will feel better because you did it and 95% of the time I have heard the compliment, “What a Gentleman” and trust me that is reward enough for me. Maybe the next woman you hold the door open for will be the future love of your life.

In the end you are a Gentleman following a long tradition of proper manners and distinction.

Mr. M

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