In a few short years, Facebook.com has become a popular social-networking web site. Its clean, attractive layout, fun games, and (comparative) privacy make the site inviting to users who don't necessarily want to spend their entire lives online - as well as to those who do.
For this reason, affinity groups of every conceivable description have come to exist on Facebook. Like the works of linguist and political dissident Noam Chomsky? Facebook users can join "Noam Chomsky," where over 6000 members can exchange opinions and information about the soft-spoken left-wing genius who ruffles conservative feathers.
On a lighter note: Were you born before Reagan was inaugurated? Do you remember when Star Wars toys didn't bend at the knee, and when Dawn of the Dead hadn't been hijacked and turned into a Ving Rhames vehicle? Join - Unlike 99.99% of the Facebook population, I was born in the "70s." Or perhaps you're angry about astronomers' recent declaration that Pluto is just a "satellite"? Join "When I was your age, Pluto was a planet." With Facebook, you can declare your love for Barack Obama, your opposition to human trafficking, and your intention to burst out in song frequently. You can join "Museums Are Sexy," "Congress of Radical Social Workers," or "I am not making this up - is it can be hugs tiem now plees?"
Cigar lovers have not gone unrepresented on Facebook, either. Bands of cigar fans - on both a local and global basis - have formed Facebook groups large and small, devoted to the common enjoyment of fine cigars.
Sporting what looks like an oil painting of Winston Churchill as its group insignia, the cigar group for my area, simply named "Cigars," describes itself as being "for those of us who make time for a good cigar."
Its 23 members have yet to post much of anything, but for an example of how cigar smokers can use Facebook's capabilities to help smokers communicate with each other, answer each others' questions, and enlighten newcomers, check out "Cigars - a man's best friend." Its active discussion board features thirty-nine topics, including "Cigar etiquette" (with 42 postings at this writing), "Recommend cigar stores," and "Are you supposed to leave cigars in their plastic wrapper when stored in your humidor? (Note the unintentionally hilarious grammatical ambiguity in that question "why on earth would you store yourself in your humidor?"and the answer, by the way, is that it's up to you.)
Other topics include the best places to smoke in states that have smoking bans (an urgent practical question for dedicated smokers), the best cigar magazines, US government legislation that may affect the cigar industry, and the ever-popular "favorite cigars" question.
Then there's "Beer and Cigars: Classic Combination," for those folks who like glassblowing. Just kidding. It"s for people who like to drink beer along with their stogies. (Most Facebook groups offer more or less exactly what the name promises.) One discussion board member here suggests combining a Sam Adams Boston Lager with a Padron, while another recommends Corona instead. A livelier discussion takes place over the question of which beer is the most overrated, with Bud Light and Heineken taking this dubious honor from most of the posters.
I Love Cuban Cigars - there's a sentiment many smokers would agree with. It's also the name for another popular Facebook group with 258 members and an active discussion board.
Other seemingly active groups include "CIGARS" (224 members), "Cigars and pipes, bringing class back to smoking" (98 members), and "I'm a Sucker for Fine Cuban Cigars" (100 members). "I freaken love cigars!!" has managed to attract 151 members despite the misspelling in its title. Individual cigar brands have their adherents, too: "I Love Montecristo and Cohiba Cigars" (205 members), "Domenico Cigars" (135 members), "Mylo's Castle Cigars" (117 members), and "Frank Correnti Cigars Ltd." (57 members). "Legalize Cuban Cigars," with 99 members, taps into Facebook's potential as a meeting-place for activists with a common cause. "Be a Woman: smoke cigars, urges one group (89 members), while another proclaims, "Real men smoke cigars" (77 members).
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