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A Cigar is a roll of tobacco that is infused with relaxation, addictive goodness, mellow smoothness, and above all, conspicuous consumerism. They range from about three inches to two feet in length, and anywhere from 1/2 inch to Earth in diameter. It is never inhaled, unless the inhaler wants to endure the eternal derision of the cigar-smoking community as a whole. People who inhale cigars are idiots and totally miss the point.
It is in no way a phallic symbol.
Invented in Rome
Cigars were invented by the Romans in 18 B.C. following their twice-over-conquest of France. The cigar, known then as immaculius magnus was used as an implement of celebration. Following the Caligulan Decree, which regulated cigar usage and manufacture throughout the Roman Empire, a cigar was mandated to be eight inches long, one inch thick, wrapped in olive leaves and comprised mainly of this wonderful little plant known as tobacco. They smelled like naked angels and tasted like burning innocence. They were ignited on the pure agony of French prisoners being burned at the stake.
Modified in Switzerland
Of course, in due time, with the establishment of large sub-mountainous vaults in the warmongering nation of Switzerland, the prevalence of cigars flourished. The Swiss, however, had no olives, because olives are a symbol of peace (ironic in the Romans' idiom) and Switzerland is famous for never being able to stay out of any conflict, no matter how small, trite, trivial, or irrelevant said conflict may be or will be.
The Swiss, therefore, replaced the olive-leaf wrapper with pure tobacco. They left the leaf green in order to get more chlorophyll out of their smoke (the Swiss were health nuts, and, just as for people who inhale cigars, people who smoke "mod" (modified) cigars for their health completely miss the point). They replaced the "Frenchman" method of ignition with the "use the flames from a melted bar of solid gold" method, which improved combustion and efficiency reliably, as well as lowered the cost of ignition, since Frenchmen disintegrated after one ignition, while melted gold would burn the air and stuff around it as long as it was hot, and could be re-used ad infinitum.
Perfected in Cuba
Not much needs to be said here. In the early 1900's, a young Fidel Castro discovered that if you roast the leaves of the wrapper before you wrap the cigar, the flavor is actually palpable. He roasted his completely black, letting all those delicious oils soak into the 'baccy, and made some of the greatest cigars the world has ever witnessed. Zeus himself is said to have smoked a whole case in one day, after which he took some punk comet named Shoemaker-Levy to his gut and never quite recovered. He damn well loved those cigars, though.
Castro revolutionized Cuba, providing a welcome respite for farmers by requiring them to produce nothing but tobacco, even if they didn't want to. He shot some of them just to prove his point (whilst smoking a legendary A. Fuentes Man-O-War, mind you). Cubans grew only the finest tobacco; those who didn't were shot. Their cigars were exclusively hand-rolled by skilled artisans with the greatest of care; those who didn't measure up were shot. Cuba departed from the earlier Roman and Swiss traditions of packaging their cigars "in whatever the hell we have lying around" by cutting down an entire forest (the environmentalist protesters were all shot first), quickly chopping it up into planks (the slow axe men were shot), and varnishing it all in the recently-nationalized AT&T (former) cell phone factory (where all the capitalist executives were happily shot before being allowed to leave the country in coffins made of cured tobacco).
He created wonderful wooden boxes out of the planks (planks that were too small, too large, or had knotholes in them were shot, just for principle's sake) and carefully laid 20 - 50 cigars in them at a time. Everyone viewed this as "fucking awesome" and the boxes became collectors' items (people in Cuba were forced to collect them, and those who refused were shot. Concerning the rest of the world, only the really cool cigar boxes (with hand-burned lettering and fancy cursive and gold medallions showing all the l337 awards the cigars won) were allowed to be exported; the rest were shot).
Following this "Cuban Revolution" the world demand for cigars exploded, and Castro could barely keep up. Realizing that his human farmers could never grow nearly enough tobacco to feed demand, he determined to increase supply to what the market desired, by building robo-tobacco-farmers and shooting all of his farmers to make room for the 'bots. He immediately nationalized the farmers' money and created a great healthcare system with it. Unfortunately, in the late '90's Cuba's healthcare system was taxed to its breakage point as decades of cigar smoking caught up almost simultaneously with millions of people.