I’m pretty sure I’ve written something just like this before, perhaps on the last occasion that some company attempted to improve the one-hitter, or so-called cigarette bat. There is only so much even an inventive soul can do with a contraption that is basically a straight and simple pipe; still, they keep on trying, and I’m always thrilled to use one in my daily routine, at least on a temporary testing basis. I’m the right guy for the job; me : one-hitter :: Bob Dole : pen.
In my experience, and this is some extensive damn experience, the finest one-hitters are always cigarette bats. Metal ones with white and yellow paint on the exterior. Never glass or porcelain, since you can’t slam those onto the ground to help with clearing them. The faux cig coating keeps the nickel relatively cool, and it helps so folks don’t think you’re smoking on the street or in your car.
With that said, not all bats are equal. Not even close. It can take some head-shop hopping to find just the right one with a bowl that’s not too deep, a stem that isn’t too thin to clear with a paperclip, and a girth that doesn’t crowd your lips or keep your one-hitter from sliding in your dugout.
The Silver Stick, which retails for $25 (about the cost of three over-the-counter one-hits combined), checks all of the above boxes. Clearly engineered by somebody who uses these things, it is lightweight (but not so light that it feels like you’re smoking a butt), stays cool through several pulls, and most importantly, is easy to clean, since it unscrews into two separate parts.
There’s just one major problem with the Silver Stick. It comes with a pack of filters you can insert in the mouthpiece, but if your flame passes the bud, which probably will happen, you’ll end up with a tongueful of disgusting. It’s a bizarre oversight for an otherwise well-conceived product, but so long as you don’t use the filters on your Silver Stick you will be golden.
A Queens, NY native who came to New England in 2004 to earn his MA in journalism at Boston University, Chris Faraone is the editor and co-publisher of DigBoston and a co-founder of the Boston Institute for Nonprofit Journalism. He has published several books including 99 Nights with the 99 Percent, and has written liner notes for hip-hop gods including Cypress Hill, Pete Rock, Nas, and various members of the Wu-Tang Clan.