Throwback Thursday: Erik Cigars!!!

This is just NUTS.  No, I am not quite old enough to remember this late-1960’s advertisement for “Erik” cigars — I happened along a few years later.  But I was named for it.

My father told me when I was growing up that he named me after hearing the name “Eric” in a cigar commercial … I guess I was just never 100 percent sure if he was kidding or not.  (My parents also came very close to naming me “Christian.”)  Just a few days ago, through the magic of the Internet, I finally discovered the ad itself.  (Thanks to Youtube user “blegume” for uploading the vintage commercial and solving this longstanding personal mystery.)

The ad itself is actually kind of funny.  It makes smoking look entirely slick and telegenic and badass, and it underscores the point metaphorically with footage of a goddam viking ship sailing around Manhattan.  (That’s the Brooklyn Bridge you see in the background.)

And, in this politically correct age, the ad manages to be at least mildly offensive to two groups: women and … Scandinavians.  (Its product, it boasts, is “the most interesting idea from Scandinavia since the blonde.”)

My self-esteem would be incredibly high if people started proudly proclaiming “ERIK” in the same manner as the robust male narrator.  I might try to create a wav. file of that and program my laptop to belt that out randomly like twice a day.  Besides, I figure it could be worse — my father could have named me “Newport Menthols” or something.  (Maybe it would be fitting; I’m slim and smooth, yet ultimately hazardous to your health.)

The Kirk Douglas lookalike you see in square-jawed profile is actually a Scandinavian named “Erik,” the video’s comments section informs me.  He is none other than Norwegian Erik Silju, and his credits include episodes of both “Route 66” and “Murder, She Wrote.”

Here’s the kicker, though — I found four other guys, in the first page of the comments section alone, who were also named “Erik” after their parents saw this ad.  That’s gotta be some kind of record.

Life is so weird.



16 thoughts on “Throwback Thursday: Erik Cigars!!!”

  1. My mom named me after “Erik” for the commercial as well. But she ended up spelling it “Eric”. I see many dudes named Eric because of this commercial.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I too named my son Eric after watching the very handsome man in an Erik cigarette commercial; though I remember the handsome man standing on the helm of the Viking ship .. the man stood there looking so awesomely handsome..
    I changed the “k” to a “c”
    because after practicing writing ✍️ the name one could not make that “k” look good.

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  3. Well gentlemen, I’m sitting down here on the Danish island of St Croix ( now USVI since 1917) with my blonde friend Hanne Rasmussen. We were discussing how I named my son Erik back in 1966, and I told her about this bloody tv commercial. My wife at the time and I had a deal. If the kid was a girl, she could give her a French name because she was from Dijon FR. If it were a boy, it was my choice. I chose Erik. He passed unexpectedly last year at 52 but I have no regrets naming him after a tv commercial which was well produced!

    I had no idea the actor was an Erik!
    John Shoup

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  4. My mom told me she named me after a cigar commercial & I’ve never searched it up until this morning (after I was texting with a friend – she asked if she was spelling my name correctly….I mentioned it is ‘Erik’ as well as the cigar commercial). I did a google search and found this page. I’m sitting drinking a cup of coffee and am pleasantly amused that there are fellow Eriks and Erics (who knows maybe even Ericks) because of this wonderful commercial. Thanks Eric for finding/posting the video and your description! And yes a secret society of the “Viking-commercial-Eric/k/cks” seems inevitable…I’m sure Netflix will discover us and start a series of us sailing around Manhattan, smoking cigars & just looking cool.

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    I used to walk to Riverside Park to look at this ship everyday after work. I miss the ship, my cigarillos, the Hudson River and the Westside.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I may or may not have ever seen this commercial. I don’t recall because I would have only been 6 yrs old at the time. However, I did actually see a pack of these cigars lying around somewhere when I was pregnant with my son and loved the spelling so much that I right then and there decided I would name him Erik. Then the added bonus was finding out through DNA testing, that our family has Viking blood running through our veins 🙂 Thanks for this add. I’m going to share it with my son and I’m sure to bring a smile to his face 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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