Actually, it is neither (yet). A hookah is one of the popular names for a device thought to have originated in the Persian Empire; possibly even before tobacco was introduced there around the year 1600. As early as 1535, a Persian poet wrote a verse, about something very like a hookah, being used to produce smoke for inhaling. There are similar versions written during the times of the Mogul (Persian) emperor Akbar in India (1542 – 1605). Hookah is an Arabic name which is often translated into English as waterpipe or hubble-bubble.
Basically, heat (usually from burning charcoal) is used to vaporize or cause tobacco to smoke. The vapor or smoke is then passed down a central tube into a bowl of water in the base of the hookah. As people suck on tubes leading out of the bowl (but placed above the water level) the smoke bubbles up out of the water and can be inhaled through the outlet tube (hence the nickname hubble-bubble). The process is said to cool the inhaled smoke. In the East, the smoke is generated from flavored tobaccos known as shisha (which is why a hookah can also be called a shisha pipe).
Enough History – Fast Forward to Today
Today, we live in an electronic age where we no longer need to vaporize or even burn tobacco whenever we feel like puffing on a smoke. Small batteries can generate enough heat through piezoelectric means to vaporize many liquids. These liquids can contain nicotine to make the vapor have the same effect as smoking tobacco. Additional flavors can be added to the liquid to provide an, almost limitless, range of flavored tastes.
Some of these “no-tobacco smokes” can be small and disposable and almost look like a traditional cigarette. Others are larger with rechargeable batteries and a liquid reservoir between the mouth piece and the battery. The Fantasia Electronic Hookah is of this latter type.
Since they have names like; Fantasia 4 Play E-Hookah, Adios M@#%+&!, Purple Haze Spice, Dirty Blonde, Magic Dragon, Peach Fuzzy Navel and Joker maybe someone, one day soon, will make the movie or design the computer game based on a Fantasia Electronic Hookah. In the meantime, we can all choose a flavor and puff away to our heart’s content.