Terrible People, Part 1: The Person Who Smokes Their E-Cig Like It’s Nobody’s Business

I actually had a pretty nice day today, but something’s been bothering me for awhile, so here’s a new series to commemorate that fact. It’s called Terrible People. You all know some of them, and I sure hope you’re not one of them. I’ve written before about bad people, bad habits, bad parenting, and other things I don’t like, but terrible people just deserve their own special place in [fill in the blank]. If you’re that type of person that likes everyone, good for you, and here’s an anchor because you’re probably a pushover.

Now that that’s settled, ladies and gentleman, here’s today’s featured Terrible Person. This would be the person who smokes his/her e-cigarette like it’s nobody’s business. Anytime, anywhere, always. Indoors, outdoors, and in between doors. I get it, you’re trying to quit smoking – that’s great – or that you’re trying to save money – understandable – but please, take it elsewhere. Just because it’s not strictly a cancer stick doesn’t mean it doesn’t smell like one and bother the heck out of everyone else in the room.

At another school, I had a class with some girl who had the chutzpah to light up during class, not even joking. Like a Christmas tree. If Christmas trees smoked e-cigs. Right in the middle of discussion. It was disgusting. First of all, isn’t it illegal to smoke inside university buildings? And if not, it should be. Second of all, just because it’s fancy does not give you the right to pretend that we’re in a hospital in the 1950s. This includes sauntering down the hallways too. Again, no matter what the cigarette, the smell is bothersome so take it outside, if you must smoke at school.

You, sir, are a chimney and a terrible person.

Okay, mostly I’m just sick of smokers. There, I’ve said it. Health reasons aside, it’s terrible for the environment, for teeth, and for getting out of clothes. Seriously, some garments take at least two washes to get the smell fully gone. And no, it’s not the same as a “pleasant, woodsy smell,” even if you are smoking pine needles or a Glade plug-in. The past few days, I feel I’ve been ambushed by them, everywhere I go. It could be someone walking a half block ahead of me, or just through a wayward wind gust. I was out on the Terrace yesterday trying to read and do homework, and had to move tables twice because some idiot’s addiction of choiced started making me light-headed. I don’t mind the smell of cheese curds, or brats, or beer (actually, some beers smell sweet and homey) but one person with one cigarette can just ruin the air quality for everyone.

I am sure there are good reasons for a person to smoke, but do it in your own home, or somewhere that’s not where people are reading/eating/congregating for extended periods of time. But when you do it in a public place, full of people, you’re basically saying, “I don’t give a crap about any of y’all because my nicotine level is too low and I can’t be bothered to excuse myself, in more ways than one.”

So there.

Now, I feel the need to write a more positive post to counterpoint this one, so stick around.

11 thoughts on “Terrible People, Part 1: The Person Who Smokes Their E-Cig Like It’s Nobody’s Business

  1. We’ve come a long ways, Jacob, in making smoking the exception rather than the norm. There was a time, not too long ago, when everyone lit up everywhere. I know that doesn’t make it any less bothersome when someone lights up next to you, but it does mean nonsmokers are bothered less often. –Curt

      • Smoking rates have fallen dramatically over the past 40 years. I led one of the first efforts in America to establish non-smoking areas way back in the 70s. At the time people smoked in offices, restaurants, retail stores and just about everywhere else. Not so today. –Curt

      • Interesting, Curt. Yep, everyone smoked back then: Lucy, Desi, and just about every TV doctor. You’ll probably be glad to hear this: when my grandmother, who smoked regularly, was pregnant with her first child, my mom, in 1949, she got very sick, and her doctor suggested to her that maybe, just maybe, smoking was harmful to her health and the health of her baby, so she quit right then and there, and had a much easier time during the rest of her pregnancy. She had 2 more kids, my uncles, and lived until age 97. I’m not sure if it was gradual or cold turkey; we have a home movie of one of my mom’s childhood birthday parties in the 1950s and my grandmother is smoking a cigarette in the background with some other adults, but my mom said that that wasn’t a day-to-day activity for her (maybe it was a reaction to having three kids and their friends running around the house). And this started all the way back in 1949! My grandmother was truly a woman ahead of her time.


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