Look How Badass Pipe Smokers Are

Pipe smokers are badass. We all know that. Pipe smokers are men in full. We all know that. Sadly, there are not many of us left. So perhaps you will find comfort in this semi-random collection of pipe-smoking badasses from days of yore.

The pictures included are here strictly for their badassery quotient. If anyone famous is included in here, it is only because they are more likely to pop up in Google image searches. Conspicuously absent are many famous pipe smoking badasses, including men such Walter Raleigh, Francis Drake, Chesty Puller, et alia. I have also excluded some badass pictures because I find the men distasteful. Subcomandante Marcos, Fidel Castro, Douglas MacArthur. Although just to upset you I'll include this picture of evil badassery, in the form of an S.S. soldier:

As the epigraph says, "Haters gonna hate." Yes, it's true. Haters are going to hate.

So let's dispense with the haters and get down to business. Behold, some badass photos of pipe-smoking badassery.

Above is a photo of a French infantryman from 1915, according to my sources on Pinterest. If anyone can tell me any more about this guy, I'd love to know it. I believe that grenadier symbol on the helmet makes him a member of the Foreign Legion, which would make sense of the beard and weather-beaten eyes: clearly a veteran of long service, even in the early days of 1915. Perhaps he is an Algerian smoking an Algerian briar! Regardless, we see in this man a brick-ton of badassery: beard, mustache, pipe, jolly bad-ass stare.

Speaking of the badassery of the French, about which I have previously written here, above you see magnificent aquiline nose and bent billiard of the inimitable Jacques Cousteau, who looks like he belongs in a Wes Anderson film. His is a practical yet elegant pipe, much like his practical yet elegant face. The pipe looks like it could be a Peterson, although I would accept correction from one more knowledgeable than I. The metal shotgun shell banding adds a touch of class. And lest you think I'm getting carried away with love for the French, don't worry, I maintain the jaundiced perspective on the Frogs that English-speakers find healthy.

On with the badassery.

Here's an Australian soldier taking a break during the Gallipoli campaign (a campaign that eventually inspired the penning of one of my favorite songs). This guy has clearly been working the horrors, and deserves his rest. So this badass pulls out his trusty pipe and tobacco pouch and leans back against a handy backstop. Wait a second...what is that he's sitting against?!

This is George S. Patton of the United States' Army. Like MacArthur, he was a prick, but at least he never tried to start World War 3. Although the circumstances of his death have led to a swirl of rumors that has never died: was he assassinated in order to keep him from pissing the Russians off?

Stupid Russians. Stupid Cold War warriors.

Regardless, this is a badass photo. The worn jacket. The apparent smoke in the background. The stare into the distance. Well choreographed, Signal Corps.

This man has seen life for what it is. You can see it in his eyes. And in his beard. And in his pipe, which you can see is battered and burnt. Like his wrinkly badass face. Is it the rocky coast of Normandy that has made him this way? Or the rocky coast of Galway? Or the rocky coast of Cornwall?

Doesn't matter. All that matters is the weather-beaten pipe-smoking badassery that will never die...the fisherman's version of the most interesting man in the world.

And last but not least...

The badassery of Sparky Anderson of the Detroit Tigers. A legendary figure in Major League Baseball through the 70s and 80s, his wrinkled sun-beaten jaw was often seen clenching a pipe.

Enjoy two picture of him. In one, we see the contemplative and relaxed side of the pipe smoker. In the other, we see the steely-eyed determination that all pipe smokers are congenitally gifted.

I particularly enjoy that he is clearly smoking quality pipes in both pictures. On the left, a canadian-style, perhaps a Peterson. On the right a beautiful bulldog with a lucite stem. Truly, the world lost a bad-ass when Sparky died in 2010.

Ah, mes amis, how fine and noble an art is pipe-smoking. How badass its practitioners. Go out now and light your own pipe in celebration of your own badassery. Yes, sir, puff on with your steely gaze and go on with your bad self.

Good night.


  1. Just to qualify, whcih John Macarthur do you find distasteful?

    1. I said John MacArthur. I meant Douglas MacArthur.

  2. More great photos of BA pipe smokers. Cool! 👍


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