How to show off my smoker's skill in a bar?
December 15, 2006 9:42 PM   Subscribe

Ok, I'm a cigar smoker (no cigarettes), so I'm at a bar, got a girl in my eye, she's looking toward me--I wanna show off--so how do I shoot off a smoke ring?

I've always been curious as my parents both smoke, and since I've started to smoke cigars, I've never figured out how to blow a smoke ring. Anyone out there have a PhD in this? I can't seem to get a smoke ring going. So how do you go about this? Any tips?
posted by uncballzer to Society & Culture (23 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Make an "O" with your mouth. Don't blow. Push the smoke out with your tongue. Should be pretty easy, if you can do it once you can do it 100 times.
posted by JeremiahBritt at 10:06 PM on December 15, 2006

You don't do this on inhaled smoke, but you need a full, slow mouth draw of smoke, as a "load". Casually purse your lips into an "O," and exhale a little explosive "puff" of air, while darting your rolled tongue, to make the center of the "O" stay clear. The object is to have a perfect ring form in the air, a couple inches in front of your face, and then dissipate.

You don't blow. You exhale a quick, sharp, "puff" almost like a small burp, as you dart your tongue forward to form the "O." And you don't exhale for several seconds immediately thereafter, as there is no point in blowing a smoke ring, if you're just then going to mess it up.

There are, however, very few situations outside of black and white movies, where this is going to be all that alluring to the opposite sex, IMHO. Bogart got Bacall, but she already wanted to be gotten.
posted by paulsc at 10:07 PM on December 15, 2006

I quit smoking several years ago, but I used to make smoke rings by making the same shape with my tongue and mouth that I would to start whistling, then make a sort of "fwwt" by closing my jaw (keeping my lips the same shape) to expel air. Trying to blow them with air from your lungs will not work - just use what's in your mouth already.

One of those things that's just impossible to describe well in words, isn't it? I hope that made sense.
posted by Addlepated at 10:07 PM on December 15, 2006

I learned over a week with a hookah. The key is thick smoke and still air - well it makes the rings more impressive. The trick is to form them with your lips - an 'o'. Since it's a cigar, the smoke is already just in your mouth - Then a very slight exhalation - I don't use my lungs to exhale - more a catch in the throat. Just start trying different things - and let everyone see your fabulous nicotine rings of death!
posted by chupwalla at 10:08 PM on December 15, 2006

Draw a mouthful of smoke.

Put your lips into the best O you can manage, like a woman putting on lipstick. Now let out your breath, from the diaphragm. Don't let your mouth or cheeks collapse as you blow out. You could also try raising your tongue. Keeping the lips in the O is crucial.

I warn you that a) many women will find this off-putting even if you get it right and b) 100% will judge you a try-hard if you get it wrong. To blow smoke at someone can be perceived as offensive and territorial. I would exercise great discretion as to my targets if I were you.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 10:08 PM on December 15, 2006

basicaly all you have to do is suck smoke into your mouth, round your lips, then use your your tongue as a pistion to shove the smoke smoothly out in a way that will make circular vertexes.

Why were you not able to google this up?
posted by MonkeySaltedNuts at 10:14 PM on December 15, 2006

The absolute easiest way to blow a smoke ring is to purse your lips in an O and tap your cheek. A light one finger tap will make tiny rings, while a light flat slap will produce heavier ones. Of course, you'll be tapping your cheek, which looks pretty dorky, but hey, smoking isn't that cool any more either.
posted by boaz at 10:20 PM on December 15, 2006

Two girls have commented here that blowing smoke rings would make the OP look like a dork. We were both deleted from this page. Since the OP's question is not only about doing thing X but about showing off for a girl by doing thing X, I think it's relevant to hear opinions from girls re. whether thing X will impress us or make us run/laugh (the two deleted answers were from girls -- or to be precise, one had a female name and the other was me, a girl :)).
posted by lorimer at 11:34 PM on December 15, 2006 [4 favorites]

a) i quit smoking 5 years ago
b) this question makes me yearn for a smoke
c) if i recall correctly: your mouth takes the shape of an O, as in the first vowel in "donut," but exaggerated. think big fat cheeks for this one, full of smoke. now, pretend you are vigorously giving someone a raspberry, but stop that motion short -- just a quick forward punch with your tongue. your tongue should not leave your mouth. the tip of your tongue doesn't even come as far forward as your teeth.
d) look like dork, or not, depending on the woman in question.
posted by sonofslim at 11:52 PM on December 15, 2006

Two girls have commented here that blowing smoke rings would make the OP look like a dork.

Make that two girls and a guy.
posted by fixedgear at 3:41 AM on December 16, 2006

Keep in mind that the air around you has to be almost perfectly still. Any wind or AC will make it next to impossible.
posted by about_time at 5:50 AM on December 16, 2006

Take a pack of cigarettes. Slide the celophane almost off. Put a lit cigaarette through the celophane and fill the celophaned area with smoke - 10 seconds? Then hold the pack, which now has a celophane 'balloon' full of smoke on its end, with the burnt hole facing up, and tap the bottom of the cellophane. You'll get a nice little smoke ring.

You need to make an 'O' with your mouth, and tap smoke out, to make a smoke ring.
posted by theora55 at 7:09 AM on December 16, 2006

Response by poster: In response to those saying I'd look like a dumbass, I don't care--wanted to know; and the bar I go to, everyone smokes. I think I've maybe seen 2 or 3 ppl in there at one time who do not smoke or didn't light up; and to the google guy--I was buzzed and didn't care too google this--sometimes actual responses are best.
posted by uncballzer at 7:12 AM on December 16, 2006

O shape, tongue sharpened in the center as a punctuation mark, glottal stop.

I can do like, 8-11 smoke rings in a row.

(i'm a lady.. different strokes, jerks!! )
posted by shownomercy at 8:08 AM on December 16, 2006

Well, since this is apparantly a place for opinions, if someone practiced and was debonair about it, I would find a well-placed smoke ring charming and flirtatious.
posted by muddgirl at 9:28 AM on December 16, 2006

It's difficult to describe how it's done, but what works for me is the aforementioned 'o' with the lips , with a very very slight puff from my lungs. I cut it short by constricting my throat to make it just a slight burst rather than a long blow.

Once you get that down, jaw action can propel the smoke ring a longer distance.

I know someone who does it entirely with their jaw and lips and can make them go around 10 feet before they stop and hang in the air, I can only get around 5...

The key, however, is practice, practice, practice. To get really good at it, I would blow rings with every cigarette I smoked for a month, doing as many as I could with each inhalation. Yes, it can be done with inhaled smoke, but the smoke isn't as thick, so they're not as impressive.

Even as a current non-smoker, I don't get why people who aren't allergic have such an 'ick' response to smoking. I'm personally more offended by heavy doses of cologne/perfume.
posted by wierdo at 9:58 AM on December 16, 2006

FYI: most people look pretty damn silly blowing smoke rings. Think "inflatable doll face".
posted by oneirodynia at 10:14 AM on December 16, 2006

Smoke rings.
posted by wsg at 10:14 AM on December 16, 2006

Do you know how to make the drip noise by thwacking your cheek while pushing forward with your tongue? Basically the same thing, only without smacking your cheek.

If you do the first one without much force, then put a little more into the second one, you can often shoot one ring through the other.

No comment on whether this will or will not make you look like a tremendous dorkwad, as I tend to believe that will depend on how hot you are in other respects (the hotter you are, the hotter doing a smoke ring becomes. The more skeevy you are, the less hot it becomes).
posted by klangklangston at 10:16 AM on December 16, 2006

How about blowing 2 smoke rings at once. It takes a little practice, but it's easy to do.

Practice by opening your mouth in a huge O and just bringing the centers of your lips together while keeping the sides of your mouth open (alternately, just bisect the opening with your tongue). Let out the little puffs and *poof* 2 smoke rings.

Disclaimer: This have never gotten me laid and surely never will, but it's pretty neat :)
posted by zerokey at 1:23 PM on December 16, 2006

Smoke is just an indicator, an aid to visualization. You will get the same ring in clear air without the smoke if you do it right, you just won't be able to see it.

When I was a kid I made a ring generator out of a two-pound coffee can with a plastic lid and an inch and a half hole cut in the bottom. Just tap the lid sharply, and a ring shoots out of the hole. The amazing thing about these rings, including smoke rings, is that they hold together and don't increase in diameter as they travel. I can't tell you how many hours I spent playing with it (I know, you can all take up a collection for my therapy later); it could blow out a candle 15 feet across the room, among other things.

I mention this because you might be able to train yourself to do it without undue smoking by setting up a candle, say 3 ft. away, and trying the techniques suggested here until you can make the flame jump.

Even though I did try, I was never able to learn to blow a smoke ring without my prosthesis.
posted by jamjam at 4:27 PM on December 16, 2006 [1 favorite]

I think it's relevant to hear opinions from girls re. whether thing X will impress us or make us run/laugh (the two deleted answers were from girls -- or to be precise, one had a female name and the other was me, a girl :)).

Good. Your opinions, no matter how valid you think they may be, do not address the question. Feel free to lay some Meta on me if you disagree.

Re: Smoke rings. Making an almost-snapping motion with your jaw while forming an "O" with your lips can get a good one going. Once you get the hang of it, it's like a riding a bike. Have fun!
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 5:32 PM on December 16, 2006

You can amaze friends with an instant smoke ring machine...

Pull the cellophane halfway off the bottom of a pack of smokes. Burn a hole in the thin side of the chamber. Blow smoke into it. Tap the other side, lightly.

Tiny little smoke rings, neato!
posted by Meatbomb at 11:02 PM on December 16, 2006 [1 favorite]

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