Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Lighten down

This past Friday we had a company picnic, and our family members were welcome to come. SubHub was busy that day, so I decided to take DD with me. I was toying with the idea of taking both kids, but that seemed a bit too much. DD behaved reasonably well in the office, and when we finally made it to Central Park, she had a blast. I barely spent any time with her - she was so happy to be in the open space with other kids. Seeing her happily running around made me think that maybe leaving the city is not such a crazy idea after all.

We all had a good time at the picnic. The food was great, the weather was gorgeous, and the planning committee actually came up with some fun games for adults as well as kids. It was really nice to be outside in the park during warm time after a long winter. Everything was fine until some jerk decided to light up, again and again. Please explain this to me: how hard is it to step just slightly aside with your cigarette instead of standing right next to the food table, with kids running around? (Or if you are standing outside of BabiesRUs, where most customers are either pregnant or with little kids, how hard is it to move away from the entrance to avoid blowing smoke in people's faces?) How about some consideration for others? Why is it that smokers understand perfectly well that passing gas and emitting various BOs in public is unacceptable, but will not extend the same logic to smoking? Honestly, I am just as much interested in smelling cigarette smoke as I am in sweaty armpits. Both are gross! And guess what? Many of you, smokers, continue to smell pretty badly long after your smoke break! I have a co-worker who reeks of cigarette smoke so badly that I try to avoid talking to him as much as possible. The smell is simply suffocating. I have heard other people in the office making comments about it, so I am not the only one. But I will bet you this guy is oblivious to this because your own poop doesn't smell to you.

And then there's the issue of health. I am perfectly aware that there are as many studies proving that second-hand smoke causes cancer as there are disproving this. So right now let's say the odds of either opinion being right are about 50/50. When the chance of something being bad for me is just as high as the chance of the substance being benign, it's only prudent to rule on the side of caution. You want to take liberties or chances with your own health - go ahead, but respect my decisions about my and my children's health.

So please, next time you are at a picnic and feel like lighting up, remember that people came there at least in part to enjoy fresh air and step aside from children's playground and food area. Better yet, put a plastic bag over your head so that you get those precious fumes all to yourself.


  1. +1. on behalf of all of the responsible smokers I apologize for the jackass! Its really rude. The only time I ever diverted from being 10000% careful about the kiddies and non-smokers was a few years ago at MSG at a Kiss / Aerosmith concert. Kiss was opening (Detroit! Rock City!) so naturally we all lit up with everything we had to smoke that evening. There is a dude behind us with a kid, chugging his beer, the kid painted with every Kiss color, and he goes - you don't smoke here! I did put out the joint, but I told him that he was an idiot for bringing his 6 year old here if he is so concerned for the kid (the poor child was petrified of the effects and deafened by the sound!!!).

  2. Well, you know me and my views on smoking. While I would concede that some smokers are more responsible than other, in my view "responsible smoker" is an oxymoron.

  3. It did cross my mind, I will admit. But i had no time/talent to develop it into a good pun... In any case, admitting that you have a problem is the first step to recovery, or so they say.


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