Wednesday, December 7, 2011

A real american hero

I just wanted to share that my very good friend Barney Krein's book is now out. There is a soft cover, hard cover and soon to be a e-book. Its a great read, written by a man who wore many hats in his life. I designed the cover and wrote the introduction as well as the afterwards. Thank you in advance for taking a look.

here is the link
I will keep everyone posted when the ebook is out.


Saturday, December 3, 2011

Cigars and hats

I had a great time attending this cigar event this past week. I had a great time with everyone. Enjoy the read.

Smokin' Ladies Night at The Mark : Expanding the Cigar Community even further

Add a comment
Brenton Agena, Portland Cigar Examiner
December 1, 2011 - Like this? Subscribe to get instant updates.
Tweet PrintEmail
Opening the frosted glass door to The Mark’s cigar and sports bar, I was taken by surprise. This establishment – soon to be reviewed in full – which normally provided a much needed service of a estside cigar sanctuary for cigar aficionados was transformed! The door had opened into an alternate dimension where men and women smoked cigars and drank scotch together. It was a realm of pure cohesion between men and the fairer sex encapsulated by scents of tobacco and cedar. Previously the only women to be seen in the room filled with billowing smoke and sports-based conversation were serving drinks and delivering food orders. Tonight was different. Tonight was buzzing. At the risk of concluding in the opening paragraph, Lady’s Night was a good night at The Mark.

Lady’s Night at The Mark is a brainchild of a very prominent member of the Portland cigar community. Cigar Lady PDX or Ruth as most refer to as, is the founder of the Smokin’ Ladies club and the event’s MC. Fluttering from group to group, this social butterfly carried herself with poise while seeming to be constantly be in motion, only taking time to enjoy small moments of cigar appreciation. Ruth had packed The Mark’s cigar room with enough points of interest to keep everyone in the room engaged throughout the evening. The sweet sounds of Mario Depriest’s voice carried through the room like a warm blanket as he sang classic holiday tunes as well as some jazz and blues standards to keep the mood just so.

What truly stood out about the event was the representation of some local companies. Ruth is a large supporter of local business growth and invited several companies to set up tables at the event both for advertising and educational purposes. There was a fantastic scotch sampling table offering several options of single malt and blended scotches as well all with a friendly education of each bottle being offered. Befittingly, next to the scotch sampling was Broadway Cigar’s table, well stocked and offering boxes of cigars at event prices as well as high quality accessories including Cuban Crafter cigar cutters. One of the best examples of local talent in the room was the presence of John Penman of Penman Hats. This outrageously talented hatter is based in Hillsboro and produces what may be the finest handmade rabbit and beaver hats you can find. The quality of these wet-blocked and hand-stitched hats rival that of the finest cappellerias in Italy. John is also the creator of one-off women’s hats that can set off any ensemble with a sense of propriety and flair.

As this event is designed to appeal to female cigar enthusiasts, the offerings were not limited to scotch, smokes and fine hats. Spread throughout the event were tables filled with beautiful jewelry and lingerie by oh Baby Lingerie, as well as a fantastic chair massage offered by Jermaine Peake. For any shoe and handbag craving present, Gregory from Inspire Your Attire was on hand to quench that thirst. The feminine touch was complete with representation by the beautiful Elizabeth and Jennifer from VIPMedispa based in Clackamas. The two aestheticians were on hand enjoying the offerings of the evening and socializing openly aside an army of over a dozen female cigar enthusiasts.

The evening carried on strongly past its scheduled end time. As if the patrons of the event didn’t want to see it come to a close. The concept of men and women all getting together to enjoy a smoke and conversation is well-conceived but rarely executed. This was the perfect realization of that notion. When asked what about the event appealed to women and what they thought about the cigar hobby in general  VIPMedispa Elizabeth responded with the notion that , “... appreciating [cigars] requires maturity and appreciation for finer things. It involves a bit of class and refined tastes…” I couldn’t agree more.

For information on the next Lady’s Night and other events being thrown by Ruth, check out her blog at