It’s a Cigar!

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It’s a boy! It’s a girl! It’s a cheap cigar! According to Cigars On Sixth in Denver, CO, “handing out cigars at the birth of a child has been a long-standing tradition in the United States and Europe.” Nonetheless, its origins are hazy. “It is believed that it originated with the birth of a son, when fathers handed out cigars (which were a rare and expensive commodity) to celebrate the blessing.” Well, yeah.

Robt. burns cigars
"It's a boy" cigars

Also, this phallic object (as Freud said, “sometimes a cigar is just a cigar”) was introduced because men were excluded from the birthing: “After the baby was born men would celebrate with their friends and relatives in the parlor or other room in the house by smoking cigars.” What else were men good for? Huh?

Paul Rand designed a few cigar packages for El Producto with the happy papa in mind, but this “Blessed Event” package is a Robt Burns variety. Burns himself was celebrated as the national poet of Scotland, founder of the Romantic Movement and an inspiration for liberal and socialist thinking in Great Britain. Oh yes, he also gave birth to this:

Should auld acquaintance be forgot, And never brought to mind? Should auld acquaintance be forgot, And auld lang syne!


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