My first cigarette was with Daphne. I call it a cigarette, but it was really a discarded butt on the pavement that she suggested we smoke in the girl’s locker room. I think we were ten or eleven. We each took one drag and to be honest, since I went second, I think I got 99% filter. Whoever had tossed it on the ground had really worked on it, so there wasn’t much left for us.
Then high school … yadda yadda yadda.
College. I can legally buy cigarettes and often times find myself inebriated out late, and wanting something in my other hand. I became a social smoker. I was comfortable with the label. Once in a while, never bought a pack, never more than one cigarette a night and only on nights I was getting after it. And yes, that was my definition of a social smoker.
Then it was never more than two a night, then only when drinking or studying late, then never before 10pm, then never before dinner … fast forward to me waking up one day, rolling over in bed and lighting up a cigarette. Realizing I had no more limits to place on myself, I decided to quit. Which happened immediately and I never had a craving. I was lucky, and I realize that.
****I have a really classy pic of me ripping a butt that my brother was kind enough to take, blow up, frame and give to my mother for Christmas that I will scan in this afternoon.
Now, I cannot stand the smell of them and will hold my breath if forced to walk through the DMV covered doorway area where all the employees sit sucking away on their cancer sticks while either staring off languidly in the distance or bitching with a co-worker … I digress.
As I see it, smoking has plenty of downsides. Just for starters, death. Rapid increase in drunken-ness (could be seen as a bonus, only I have encountered this when you are on the precarious edge of trouble and rocketed from 0-60 and those stories never have good endings). The stench on your hands, and the lingering smoke smell in your hair and any fabric you happened to pass out in. Having to go outside to do it in most states (again, not a huge issue, but it gets cold in Vermont, and there are a lot of rainy nights). The expense. The effects on your lung capacity. Yellowing teeth. The groggy voice. The coughing.
I’ll stop there.
The upsides. The slight “whopee” high you get when you’re not a big smoker. The image (for a while, some people suffer from the delusion that they look cool while smoking – so I’m going to include this). Some women like the whole appetite suppression thing, but I would recommend a tape worm before smoking. Smoke rings, those are pretty neat. And … I’m spent.
So, why not smoke something that gets you high … if you’re going to do it at all? I’m not recommending drug use, I wouldn’t dream of something like that. But, if you’re going to screw up your lungs and spend a lot of money doing it …. why the hell are people wasting their time with tobacco?