I can’t shake this feeling I’ve got
My dirty hands, have I been in the wars?
The saddest thing that I’d ever seen
We’re smokers outside the hospital doors
I work in the field of addiction and yet I still wonder how smokers can continue their addiction. Many very nice, normal, intelligent people smoke. Don’t worry, this isn’t going to be some holier than thou diatribe against smoking. Mostly I just love the song I quoted. You should look it up and add it to your iPod. (Editors you can thank me later, perhaps in the form of a tiny royalty check) If people want to have cancer, bad breath, and smelly clothes ‘m fine with that. I have friends that smoke and I’ve never said a word to them about it.
What got me to thinking about the incredible grip that nicotine addiction has on people is the weather. I live in the Northeast, yeah I know that seems as stupid as smoking already. This week it has been unbelieveably cold. Single digits or less, fahrenheit with windchill temps around 20 below zero. (For my Canadian friends that’s a hell of a lot colder than your zero. See? The United states is better than you at yet another thing) Yesterday as I was driving around I was passed by a smoker who was driving with her window open so she could flick her ashes out of the car. In the summer, fine, but when it feels like 20 below and you’re going 60 miles per hour I have no interest in any air from the outside touching me. Yet smoking drives people to do this and often, because of the laws that prohibit smoking in public buildings, they stand outdoors smoking in all kinds of weather. I used to be a second hand smoker but I gave it up by chewing used nicorette gum.