NY Show Report 3-13-10


Old friend Dick Morse once said, "there's nothing like a pipe show".
How true. I met up with friend and fellow SHPC and BoB's member Andy
Camire at Rein's Deli in Vernon Ct. on Friday morning. After breakfast
we proceeded down to the Wyndham. For once there was plenty of parking
there and the rains had yet to begin their assault on New Jersey. We
checked in and were overjoyed to find that our reservations had indeed
been kept and that we were able to get rooms early.
After chilling out a bit I headed down to Andy's room. He's been
settling the estate for the SHPC's longtime President Don Powers who
had 400-500 pipes in his collection. Two really caught my eye. One was
a flawless crossgrained Larsen Select and the other a Larsen Pearl
with very strange boxwood inserts on the bowl. I'm conviced it was
made by Tonni Nielsen sometime in the 80's. A deal was quickly worked
out and I had made my first purchases of the show. A time later I ran
into my buddy Mel Feldman of The Smoker in Albaby,NY. Mel's been
liquidating his wares for retirement and brought with him two foot
lockers full of aged tobacco and about 1,000 high grade pipes. I
bought a ton of MacBaren's, Edgeworth, Dobie's and others from him as
well as a super Castello Lovat and a big Mike Frey freehand with
exceptional straight grain for a very good price.
In leaving Mel's I ran into friend and show organizer Sammy Barnett. I
did'nt know it then but this meeting was to change the course of my
show in amazing ways. Sam had brought with him quite a few pieces for
sale and was gracious enough to give me the first viewing. As he
pulled them out of his bag I layed each on the desk in his room.
Several caught my eye including a nice Sam Howell clam, a Jody Davis
blasted lovat, a Premal Chedda basted bent poker and a killer Tonni.
The one I'd see next nearly made my head spin. Out of the bag came THE
Nanna Ivarsson bent blasted egg that I've been after forever. The
dream pipe! It was love at first sight I gotta tell you. A deal was
QUICKLY worked out for the Howell, the Davis and the Nanna. From Sam's
I went next door to see two of my favorite folks in the world Jay and
Louise Jones of Ohio. It's always nice seeing them and I really
appreciate the fact that they never miss a NY show. I wish all vendors
showed this same loyalty! Jay was kind enough to bring me a bunch of
Dunhill newsletters for my ephemera collection.
Shortly thereafter about 20 of us attended dinner in the hotel's
restaurant. It was great just talking to friends and checking up on
their activities A few of us made plans to meet up later that night.
We checked out the various open rooms and what was for sale. At about
10:00 pm I got a text from Brother Frost saying that he had got to
town. I gave him my room number and he came down to visit for a bit. A
few mins into our visit the flood gates opened and nearly everyone
staying in the hotel was in my room smoking and talking. Robert Lawing
came in and shot the breeze only to be followed by old friend
collector Neill Roan. It was almost surreal to me. A great time
indeed. My good friend Ron Colter also showed up. He checked out my
newly aquired Jody Davis with considerable intrest. He confided to me
that he REALLY wanted the pipe. I know how it is to feel that you've
lost out on something like this. It can really ruin your show. A deal
was worked out and Ron got the pipe. I had owned it for less than two
hours but pipes are pipes and friends are friends and one just carries
more clout than the other!
The next morning I woke up at the crack of dawn to have breakfast with
Mel and set up his four tables in the hall. We were in the doors at
8:00 and man was it hot! Someone had let the heat crank ALL night
long. Uggghhh. After helping Mel I went around visiting with everyone
as they set up. I was first to see Robert Lawing's stock and fell in
love with a little Jess blast which I quickly bought. Robert and I
also worked out a deal for my recently aquired Howell clam. In looking
at it the pipe was just TOO similar to another Howell clam which I
already owned. We made a deal for a sick little Scott Anderson tomato
and a clean Stanwell bamboo bent. I had never heard of Anderson pipes
before but was amazed at the quality. He's a very small production
maker who concentrates on nosewarmers. His commissions can take years
and he'll only bring a few pipes to a show with for sale. I'm thrilled
to Have bought it. Robert is every bit the gentleman I thought he's
be. A nicer guy you'd not soon meet.
Most of my day was spent helping Mel with sales and visting with
fellow BoB's board members and friends. Got a chance to meet Dover
pipes, Rugby and Scott. Good dudes all of em'! I also got quite an
education about Comoy Blue Ribands from buddy Neill Roan who is simply
"passionate" about these old pipes. He also showed me what I believe
to be the finest Cornelius Manz ever made among other straightgrained
wood that would make a grown man cry. Neill has an amazing eye folks.
I truly enjoyed his company throughout the show.
Later that day I was making the rounds and found a fella selling
McCranie's Red Ribbon and Red Flake at $10.00 per tin and bought them
all! These sell for at least $30.00-$50.00 per tin everywhere! Another
fella was selling an 8 oz bag of Penzance for $20.00 and two OLD
production tins for $8.00 ea. Bought these two. Jay Jones sold me an
awesome Peter Stokkebye advertising piece as well as an unused in the
box Dunhill leather journal from "84". There was other stuff bought
and other folks talked to but this was the gist of it. For me it was a
great show all the way around! Hanging out with friends and buying
pipes! What's better?
At about 3:00 Andy and I headed back. The skys were pouring and the
wind was howling! It took us four hours to make a run that should have
taken less than three! Still we chatted and passed the time and ate at
good old Rein's again. It was a great as usuual.
I think the best news of all is that due to very GOOD walk in traffic
and vendor support there will be a NY show in December! Thanks to all
that came! It wouldn't have been the same without ya! My one regreat
was not getting to hang out with friend Rich Esserman. The day went by
quick and before I knew it was over. That's the one problem with pipe
shows, not enough time to do all ya' wanna do....