They say that smoking will be the death of avid smokers but more often than not, it is meant figuratively. In the case of John Henry James, however, the saying became literal when a lit cigar was left untended in his study. The study was full of papers, books, and other flammable materials â€“ practically a tinderbox! John Henry James, 64 years of age, used to be a show jumping champion and was known to smoke 20 cigars a day. Firefighters immediately responded to the emergency call but by the time they got there, the whole house was on fire. Their valiant efforts resulted in saving the mansion, which is reported to cost about 2 million Great Britain Pounds but they were not able to save John Henry James, who died of smoke inhalation.
It is a pity that things had to end that way but it does save as a stark reminder for us cigar enthusiasts. Think about it, how many times have you enjoyed a cigar while engaging in other equally pleasant activities? How many times have you absentmindedly left your cigar to burn out in the ashtray? You may think that since the ashtray is inflammable, you are safe. I am sure John Henry James might have thought the same way. Still, leaving a cigar like that â€“ anywhere â€“ is never a good idea. In addition to this, why waste a whole cigar if youâ€™re not going to enjoy it? Lesson for the day: donâ€™t let your cigar burn out, especially if you are going to leave it in a room.
Originally posted on November 13, 2008 @ 6:00 pm