Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Smokers butt out!

First off I have to firstly apologise in advance to the number of friends I have who smoke, I'm sure you'll disagree with everything I have to say here...

Right now that's done with. Smoking. I bloody hate it.

I am currently sat on my lunchbreak, sat outside on a lovely sunny day trying to relax and get some 'fresh' air away from the office. After a few minutes of enjoying the outside, some idiot smoker comes and plonks themselves down next to me and lights up.

Now don't get me wrong everyone has equal rights and if someone is on their break and smoke they will likely want a cigarette on their lunchbreak. Fine, but then smoke it. Don't sit with it hanging off your hand, fumes blowing towards me, making my clothes and hair stink and causing me to cough.

It's funny since the ban on smoking indoors I will admit it has made non smokers like me worse. Going for a night out, the next day smoke smell was as much a part of the morning after as the hangover. I seemed oblivious to the smell and fumes around me when dancing and drinking the night away. Now though I walk out a venue and the stench hits me.

I come out the station and people are standing right outside smoking, at the bus stop, outside restaurants, hospitals, you name it a pack of smokers are there. Now you have no chance to adjust to the smell the moment you face any smoke it hits you ten fold and for some reason it annoys me more than it ever used to.

I've never smoked - apart from the odd one or two occasions when drunk in my college years, insisting I wanted to smoke and then coughing and spluttering all over the place! I guess I've just never been 'cool enough' to pull off this behaviour. Granted, being asthmatic probably doesn't help either!

Live update for you - guy next to me after lighting up his second cigarette, has taken what must be 3 at most puffs, in between letting it burn away and has now stubbed it out. Waste. Of. Time (and caused my stuff to stink for no reason).

It's also starting to annoy me at home. My block includes just six flats and I'm on the top floor. I have the most annoying 'chav' neighbours opposite who smoke like chimneys and so the communal hallway regularly stinks and if I'm lucky my hallway by my front door smells of cigarettes too. Downstairs we have another chain smoker, now she likes to smoke outside. Outside our communal front door downstairs that is and leaves all her butts on the grass and path as evidence. Nice.

At work people often remark how smokers get more 'breaks' as they regularly pop outside to light up. You don't smoke you just have to stay put. Or go join them and come back smelly.

I always remember when a young girl my Auntie and Uncle smoked. Lots. So much so my Mum had to wash everything after I visited there to remove the stench. They would smoke at dinner tables too as soon as the meal was eaten, desperate to get that nicotine fix. Eventually they gave up (after a negotiation involving me stopping sucking my thumb!)

Obviously at the moment Stacey Solomon has been attacked over her smoking during pregnancy. Why would you put an unborn child at such risk? I love a good drink on a night out, but I would without doubt give it up without fail on learning of any pregnancy. My Mum herself smoked when young, but again gave up when she found out she was having me. Granted, I guess it depends on your addiction.

I guess it's also the fact it is encroaching on your rights too really to protect your health. You make a conscious decision not to smoke - either because you want to keep your lungs healthy or you just don't enjoy it. My reasons incorporate both I admit. However if you're outside and someone wants to use their right to have freedom to smoke your health rights go right out the window. Lung damage and cancer risks just come on over.

I'm going to stop there - whilst I still hopefully still have all my smoking friends and colleagues.

Smokers though please just take note. I know you have every right to smoke when and how often you want. But please spare a thought for us weak-chested, uncool non-smokers out there and if you want a fag hold it in the other direction to us, don't blow the smoke in our face, actually smoke it and if you live with others open the window! Thanks.

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