By Thembelani Mkhize
“If you’re looking for loyalty get a dog… and a pipe.” This was the thought that came to mind as I was watching Butch light up his pipe. Butch is a regular at Jasper’s, the new tobacconist in Howick run by Howick’s own “Mr Social Media”, Scott Smiley.
Now apart from loyalty you wouldn’t want to touch Butch’s pipe, because he literally looks like he could crush you like dry tobacco with just one hand, but that’s a story for another day. To avoid that type of confrontation, Jasper’s offers a range of pipes for both the classic gentlemen and elegant ladies.
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The shop also offers a variety of tobacco, CBD and vape products. You can also find cool smoking accessories like custom-rolling trays, colourful bongs and hookah pipes. The shop is located at the old Rycroft building on Main Road in Howick, shop number two, right where the old Springbok hairdressers used to be.
When Smiley started the shop with his partner, they were looking to create more than just a tobacconist. They wanted a classic ‘Western’ look for their branding. “We wanted the place to invoke the feeling of a classic Western saloon,” says Smiley. “Instead of all the neon lights we’re accustomed to at regular tobacconists, we thought it would be great to a have a more warm, wooden finish to our shop,” he added.
Smiley attended Howick High as a teenager and has worked around the town for most of his life. He has a company called The Bad Badger and under the company sells everything from wines to flavoured condoms. The latter caused quite a ruckus online with the cheeky messages that can be found on the packaging of the condom. One boasted a picture of a pizza slice and had a little quote that said “get her pizza not pregnant”.
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Apart from all the tobacco products at Jasper’s, you can also find Bad Badger products at the shop, such as condoms and sanitisers and their new in-house vape juice. A range of cigars, such as Romeo & Juliet’s or Cigarillo’s from Moods, can also be snapped up, along with all kinds of special gifts for dad and lads, and the ladies too. And, for those who like a good read, why not snap up one of the books on sale in the shop?
The shop’s slogan is “More than just a pipe dream”, and it seems fitting for Smiley and his partner, as they have literally made their “pipe dream” a reality.
Contact: Cell 082 076 0565. Facebook page
Business hours: Weekdays, 9am-5.30pm, and on weekends until 3pm.