A thing that reminds me of prunes and the 1990s
This is my father's pipe, made from a pear root. I won't lie: its cracks do not hide an important family story, nor do they conceal a complex metaphor. Maybe the most interesting fact in the pipe’s biography is that my father only smoked it twice.
But every time I bring it to my nose, I smell prunes and burnt malt, as if it had been put out just a few days ago. Smell is perhaps the most selfish of the senses, drawing all attention to itself. Smells are nothing more than memory shortcuts, a kind of cheat trick that brings you back to the past better than any audio tape or photograph. Things also grow, absorb experiences, and outlive their owners. If it’s lucky, maybe the pipe with its smell will outlive us when both my father and I fade away from this world.