Monday, March 03, 2008

Thank You for Not Smoking

I have a few gripes to share with you. I'll share one today and one tomorrow.

First of all, it is a BEAUTIFUL day here in Northern California. I'm a little grumpy that I am stuck inside at work. At least I have some windows to look out of.

I was thinking about smoking today. It doesn't seem that long ago when one would enter a restaurant and be asked whether one would like to sit in "smoking" or "non-smoking." That seems to be a rarer phenomenon these days. In California, smoking is banned just about everywhere. As a non-smoker, I find this refreshing. My husband is also sensitive to this issue as both his parents were heavy smokers and both died of cancer. Gary has bad lung problems as a result of his exposure to smoking throughout his childhood. I was lucky enough to be raised by two non-smokers. But I have to admit that I have gotten a little spoiled.

The campus where I work became a non-smoking campus last year. That doesn't stop students from hanging out on the street smoking, however. When I go for my daily walk, I feel like I have to run the gauntlet to get through the smokers. It's really frustrating. On the one hand, I believe that smokers should have the right to smoke if they want to. I imagine it must be EXTREMELY difficult to quit that kind of addiction. And it doesn't seem fair to force smokers into small spaces or outdoors in inclement weather. HOWEVER, I don't want to breathe in that smoke. And I certainly don't want my child to. Sigh. At least it seems like smoking is on the decline. I'll just cover my face with a scarf when I cross the street where the smokers hang out. Or is that too dramatic?

By the way, I have a non-related anecdote to share. I'm sharing it because I think it's something my friend Vieve will enjoy.

I went out for Mexican food today and saw something unusual. There was a gentleman sitting at a table and he was eating chips and salsa. The salsa was served in a little bowl. Normally, people (like myself) dip the chips into the salsa and then eat them. This gentleman would eat a few chips and then pick up the bowl like a teacup and DRINK THE SALSA! I was amazed! He must be a hardcare salsa lover!


Gary said...

I'm glad to see that smoking is getting increasingly squelched, too, though I have to say that there was something I liked about smoky bars.

I suppose you could find a new walking route, but if those students are smoking in a place where they shouldn't be, then yes, you should definitely go heavy on the drama.

Genevieve said...

recently I was in Vienna and I was asked "smoking or non" in a restaurant. I had totally forgotten about it and it was gross when I was seated oh, one table away from smoking. and everyone in Copenhagen seemed to smoke - lots of smoke on the streets. I agree its gross but I don't see much to do about it other than try to walk away from them or cough really loudly or something.

the salsa drinker is amazing! I wish you had gotten a picture. that is so not normal.

Kris said...

I have to agree with you. I understand that smokers have rights, but I have the right to not breath in their smoke. It would be one thing if it wasn't harmful to a persons health, but because it is....
sticky situation.

Hubby and I don't smoke but his mom does. She smokes in the house and the house stinks. I've already mentioned to hubby that whenever I get pregnant - I will not step foot in his parents house. I dont' think that will go over very well though. haha!