February 01, 2011

Commentary on cigar decorum at my event

Lately I've been posting about the number of manufacturers and shops who are graciously contributing to the South Carolina Sit Down. While some choose not to participate, and that is their decision, there is one instance this year that makes me wonder. For many years Perdomo Cigars has been a faithful contributor to our event. Again this year, I contacted them for their help. Yesterday I received an email from Juan Liranzo, Operations Manager of Perdomo Cigars, saying that they will not be participating in this year's event. Here is an excerpt from the email:
We get hundreds of request to support fund raisers of which we must regretfully turn down many. Perdomo continues to absorb the SCHIP tax on many of our popular brands to ease the punitive effect this tax has on cigars smokers. This in turn forces the company to limit our community outreach programs and charitable contributions. Although we will not be able to support the South Carolina Sit Down this year we wish you great success.
Now, what he says makes a lot of sense and I fully understand his reasons. I can't help but wonder if their decision could have been influenced by a comment made to Nick Perdomo during his appearance at one of our events 2 years ago where someone, and I still do not know who, made the comment directly to Nick when he handed them one of his cigars, "do you have anything else, I don't really like Perdomo cigars". Now, one of two things here; either the person did not know that he was being offered a cigar from the owner of the company (not likely since I announced that Nick was there over a PA system) or they were just rude. I'm leaning toward the latter. Talk about ungrateful. And to make things worse Nick was handing out samples of his Champagne robusto's, which are fantastic cigars that I have rated here and gave very high marks. Yes, tastes are all different but that's not the point. The point is someone said disparaging remarks to the owner of a cigar company who was handing them a FREE cigar. Who complains about free cigars? If you don't like it just say thank you and give it to someone who does like them at a later time.

When I heard of that exchange I got really upset. How could anyone be so bold and rude? Let me make it easy for all of you. If you come to the event planning on getting ONLY cigars that you like, and if that's your objective for coming, then do us all a favor and don't come. I don't need that attitude. Just for walking in the door you get handed free cigars. Don't complain about what you get. Don't ask to exchange them for something you like. I'm not interested in hearing that. You may even be asked to leave if you do complain. The event is for cigar lovers. You may get a cigar that you don't care for, and if you do just trade it with someone. It's that easy. Don't complain to me about it.

Some people show up for the wrong reasons. They're looking for the free stuff; that's it. Now, if your reasons are to enjoy cigars with other lovers of the art form, or to support a worthwhile charity like Sister Care, Inc., then you're here for the right reasons. While I can't say for certain that the unfortunate comment of 2 years ago led to Perdomo's decision not to contribute this year I'm 100% sure it did not help.


Jack said...

Well said Tim. I had not heard about that exchange until now... and I am as upset as you are!

It is a shame that some people seem to just show up for free sticks and then complain about what they are getting for FREE or leave 30 minutes after showing up without buying raffle tix or anything like that.

Wow.... I still can't believe someone said that... Regardless, the SC Sitdown is still the #1 cigar event around!

Henry said...

It is truly mind boggling that there are folks out there with such attitudes.
I have heard people at past events ask Tim to exchange one of the cigars they got at the door which took me aback a little.
This is a great event for many reasons and I appreciate all the effort that goes into putting it on.

Anonymous said...

WOW...some people have no class. Hopefully they just stay away & keep the event for all of us who are there to raise money for a good cause & socialize with others at the best cigar event in the Southeast.

BTW...your comments were right on.

Tiki Jim

Webster said...

Unbelievable! I could not agree more, if someone doesn't have enough class to appreciate what the event is about AND you are getting free cigars from the owner of the company no less, then we all agree you should stay away.

Plume said...

WOW....all I can say is WOW and how rude that was..in any instance.

99% of the time I smoke Cuban cigars and have for over 16 years. I have atttened numerous cigar events, at shops, crawls and charity events. I have graciously accepted everything, things I would never smoke. However, I would NEVER say anything like the situation that Tim describes. Hey, you know what? If you get some FREE cigars that you don't like, toss them in an empty box until you have a decent ammount and take them down to your local fire station. Somebody there will love them, that's what I always do with cigars I don't care for, but never ever would I complain about a FREE cigar.

Bird said...

Absolutely not acceptable.
People have no class at all anymore.
I know that a lot of the 'Classlessness" in my area stems from an overdeveloped sense of entitlement. Some people need to be put over their parents knees...