Smoking is bad, mmm'kay? Now that we have that part out of the way, may I say, "Whooooo!", for today, my friends, I got a brown BIC lighter.
What had happened was that just earlier in the day, I'd lost my lighter. I had a pretty standard BIC lighter of the black color, and it went missing. I assume it will pop up somewhere, since I didn't go anywhere and they tend not to walk away on their own. I checked my pockets, the patio table, my desk, and basically all around my home. Nada. I haven't looked in the fridge yet, but I didn't intend on waiting until some years from now when I move a piece of furniture for it to pop up. Reinforcements needed to be summoned.
A little after 4PM, feeling the need for some caffeine, I walked across the street to the Bean Counter, where Francesco brewed me up a delicious vanilla latte (my semi frou-frou beverage I occasionally consume in the afternoons). With my delicious drink in hand, I then walked to the cigarette store and surprisingly remembered the predicament of my missing lighter. I usually forget these things until it's too late and the store is closed, and I'm digging through drawers in my kitchen at 11PM hoping to scrounge up a random match.
But I remembered this time, and glanced down at the BIC display on the countertop. At first I thought my eyes were deceiving me, but there, in between the typical mix of black, red, yellow, green, purple, and blue BICs, was something that seemed to exude a more organic vibe. I reached toward it, half expecting it to disappear or scamper off like a mischievous wood sprite, but my hand plucked it from its nest and lo and behold! The elusive brown BIC!
Now that you're thinking that I'm some kind of lighter collector or pyro fetishist or something of that sort, let me assuage you: I'm not very picky about lighters at all. I do tend to use the classic BIC lighter, but I'll usually take any color available that's not particularly obnoxious (though I tend to favor the black, green, and red ones over the blues, purples, or yellows). However, there are certain shades of BICs that seem to come up much less often than others. Brown, in addition to being a lovely natural shade, has also been pretty rare in the BIC product line. I'll always grab them when I see them out there.
More rare BIC colors
In doing a wee bit of research (i.e., googling "rare BIC lighter colors"), I do see that the brown is indeed a talked-about commodity and is appreciated by aficionados of BICs (BICophiles?). From what I can tell, the entire standard current BIC range includes the following:
Black, White, Red, Orange, Yellow, Blue, Green, Brown, Pink, Purple. 10 colors. That's it. Now, I know for a fact that there have been others in the past. I recall a delightful beige version, for example, and at least two shapes of gray, medium and charcoal, that I'd love to see again someday. Alas, the non-permanent nature of disposable lighters dictates that when BIC stops making them, they soon vanish off the face of the planet forever. Goodbye, beige and grays! I also recall having seen now-discontinued sky blue and lime green versions, though I can't say I miss them much.
From the current selections, most colors can be found everywhere, except for two: pink and brown. Both of these seem to be produced in much lower quantities than any of the others. Who knows why? Perhaps BIC has sound business reasons for this seemingly odd disparity of lighter hues, but the proof is in the pudding, or rather at the point of sale. You just never seem to see the brown or pink ones. Since I'm not a personal fan of pink (not that there's anything wrong with it), brown is the color that I mostly covet. And today, my friends, the brown is mine.
You might find it interesting to note that the classic BIC Maxi Lighter is in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York. I find BICs good because they actually do last a long time and tend not to break. And, of course, they're cheap. And, above all, I'm a creature of habit and have been using BICs as long as I've been igniting things, which is a pretty long time now.
So, that's the end of my story. Brown BIC. Happy day.