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View Full Version : No, you CAN'T have a cigarette!


davenportavenger
02-16-2006, 05:32 PM
So I'm standing outside on my lunch break, enjoying one of my three daily cigarettes, when a guy comes up to me and asks if he can bum one. I usually say no to these kinds of requests, but I'm feeling charitable for the first time this decade so I decide to give him one. Suddenly, I feel someone behind me, shadowing me like a boogyman. It's another fucking dude.

"Actually, can I have one of those, too?"

Well, I put my foot down. "Sorry, last one." And he knew I was lying because he saw me open my pack for Dude #1 and I could see a what-a-bitch look forming on his face as I walked away.

What I wanted to say was: "Do I LOOK like a fucking cigarette machine to you?! Do you think cigarettes grow on TREES?! No, they don't!!! They grow on plants, and I pay MY money to someone so they can grind up those plants and mix them with various tars and contaminants and put them in a little tube, which I can then enjoy! And you're not getting one!!! Get a job!!! Oh, wait, you work here with me, you do have a job. So go buy some goddamn cigarettes!!!"

Seriously, what is the major malfunction of these people? Even when I'm really dying for a cigarette (which I never am, because I'm not addicted) I wouldn't ask a complete stranger for one, any more than I would ask them for money for the bus. No, wait, people ask for that, too.

And I get someone asking me for a cigarette almost every day. Whether I'm on break at work, or walking home, or waiting outside a building, I'll get asked for a smoke, if I happen to be smoking at the time. Hell, one time some dude (and it is always a dude, women have never asked me for cigarettes) cornered me while I was coming out of the convenience store with a brand new pack. If I gave out cigarettes to every person who requested one, I'd be flying through two packs a week. Not cool, anonymous strangers!

That's it, from now on I'm going to take one cigarette to work in a plastic baggie so when some loser with no concept of trading money for goods and services asks me for one I can truthfully say that it was my last one. I'm all for the occasional charitable giving of carcinogenic substances, but this has pushed me too far.

And the next shadowy dude who asks for one is getting a butt in the eye, I swear to God.

levdrakon
02-16-2006, 05:37 PM
This is my favorite:

"Can I bum a smoke? I'm trying to quit."
"Quit smoking, or quit buying?"

Ponder Stibbons
02-16-2006, 05:38 PM
So, can I have one? Please, I'm seriously jonesin' here.

Frank
02-16-2006, 05:45 PM
I've never expected or accepted money for a cigarette. Of course, unlike you, I've bummed enough in my time that I feel obligated to hand one out when asked. Matter of fact, I usually say, "Take two."

We'll see what the responses are like here; I hope there are more smokers like me than there are like you.

Kimstu
02-16-2006, 05:52 PM
As a non-smoker (well, not since twenty-odd years ago in high school, and not much then), I've always been fascinated by the "practical communism" of cigarette-bumming among smokers. Sometimes a total stranger will just walk up to me and ask me for a cigarette, or a total stranger lighting one up will offer me one. Polite "no" in both cases, but I always wondered, "Gee, smokers seem to just casually exchange cigarettes between total strangers, upon a random request. How does that work?"

Apparently, it doesn't always. Oh well.

Ensign Edison
02-16-2006, 05:53 PM
I've never expected or accepted money for a cigarette. Of course, unlike you, I've bummed enough in my time that I feel obligated to hand one out when asked. Matter of fact, I usually say, "Take two."

We'll see what the responses are like here; I hope there are more smokers like me than there are like you.

I was more like you. Hell, the camraderie of smokerdom is one of the things I miss. I got into a lot of conversations I never would have otherwise. I gave cigarettes to anybody who asked for them and never found myself wanting in hard times. Funny how that works.

Caffeine.addict
02-16-2006, 05:54 PM
I quit a few years back, but it works via cigarette karma. The amount of smoke that you give out will eventually be balanced out by the number of smokes that you bum from people.

phungi
02-16-2006, 05:56 PM
no opinion other than "bleh, scummy cigarettes..."

Scissorjack
02-16-2006, 06:03 PM
As a non-smoker (well, not since twenty-odd years ago in high school, and not much then), I've always been fascinated by the "practical communism" of cigarette-bumming among smokers. Sometimes a total stranger will just walk up to me and ask me for a cigarette, or a total stranger lighting one up will offer me one. Polite "no" in both cases, but I always wondered, "Gee, smokers seem to just casually exchange cigarettes between total strangers, upon a random request. How does that work?"

Cigarette socialism: mostly works fine. If you give 'em out, you get 'em back when you're short - I always give 'em out when asked, even to the scroungers, because I've smoked enough OP's in my time: if I totted them all up, I'd probably still come out ahead. Now that there's no smoking in bars here, there's also the camaraderie of the pariahs who've been cast out into the outer darkness of chilly doorways: great way to meet chicks, incidentally.

betenoir
02-16-2006, 06:03 PM
I'm not defending the guy. Hell, I used to go out witha guy and have to walk next to him while he systmatically hit up every passing smoker for a cigarette. He also once got in a homeless shelter food line because he couldn''t be arsed to buy lunch. I don't think I need to say anything else.

But what I'm thinking is he say you give one to someone else but wouldn't give one to me....probably walked off thinking "but's what's wrong with meeeeee?????" "I must be a bad persoooonnn!!!!!!"

Just saying maybe he's not a moocher so much as a neurotic.

Carol the Impaler
02-16-2006, 06:04 PM
Really, I have to agree with everyone here. I came to understand that freely (snerk) giving out cigs was a part of smokers' etiquette. Unless, of course, you were down to one, and then no one with any sense would expect you to give that one to them.

Oh, and as a woman, I have no problem bumming smokes from men.

uglybeech
02-16-2006, 06:15 PM
When I smoked I definitely gave out alot more cigarettes than I bummed, but I was happy to do it, because when you bum a cigarette you usually are in a serious nicotine fit, so I thought of it a worthwhile prepayment for future crises of my own. I considered people who turned down such a trivial request total dicks, frankly and was only turned down once myself - by someone who, in retrospect, seemed a little unbalanced, and I probably shouldn't have asked her in the first place. I rarely turned down requests and only when I was running low and always apologetically.

Antinor01
02-16-2006, 06:17 PM
I don't mind giving a cig to someone, it's when they act like they're entitled to it that I get pissed.

Necros
02-16-2006, 06:23 PM
We'll see what the responses are like here; I hope there are more smokers like me than there are like you.
I think there are. I've bummed and been bummed from across the world. It's a truly global phenomenon. One doesn't even have to be able to speak the language to bum a smoke. Every smoker understands the body language. The only time it's ever an issue is if it's your last one, and even then I'll offer if someone asks for one. The result is always a look of horror and a backing away. No one will willingly bum a person's last one.

As a side note for non-smokers wishing to observe the strange rituals of the hidden society of smokers, stop into the smoking lounge/area of an airport sometime. Because of lighters being banned after security checkpoints, it's like a strange tribalistic thing where people are exchanging lit cigarettes for the flame, and none is willing to let it go out. Very odd. I've been thinking about putting together a site that encourages people to drop off their lighters on ashtrays at the airport before they go in. If we could get enough people doing this, no one would ever need to buy a lighter at their destination again. Drop yours off when you depart, pick one up off the ashtray when you arrive...

Fear Itself
02-16-2006, 06:24 PM
I don't mind giving a cig to someone, it's when they act like they're entitled to it that I get pissed.How about when they stick it over their ear, "for later"?

redtail23
02-16-2006, 06:30 PM
I always give out smokes when asked, lest I be caught by bad karma. Although a lot of times at work, I just take the one cigarette down with me (not to prevent bumming, just too lazy to carry the whole case).

On the other hand, it took me only one cigarette to learn that you do NOT light up on the street in Haight-Ashbury (back when you could actually smoke inside California). Piranhas come to mind. Friendly, chillin', hippie piranhas, but still.

jjimm
02-16-2006, 06:30 PM
davenportavenger, I said similar to what you wanted to, just the other day. I was in a bar and was a trifle drunk and cranky, but more importantly it was cigarette begging request #5 or 6 of that very day, which which is why I said it.

Girl: "Do you have a cigarette?"
Me: "Yes."
Girl: "Can I have one?"
Me: "OK." I give her a cigarette. "Do you have any money?"
Girl: "Yes."
Me: [Patronisingly] "Well do what I usually do in these circumstances is I get my money and I spend it on cigarettes so I don't have to beg."
Girl: [Outraged] "Well if you're going to be like that, you can have it back."
Me: "OK then." I took the cigarette back and put it in my packet.

She then turned to my wife and asked her, who gave her a cigarette from the same packet. In fact, I think it was the same cigarette I'd given her before.

Anyway, immediately afterwards I felt like a heel, so when she went to the bathroom I got a friend to be "the fag fairy", and put a couple of extra ones on her table.

I'm not normally that rude, and usually I hand out two or three if I'm flush, but that day this poor girl was the straw that broke the camel's back.

Antinor01
02-16-2006, 06:33 PM
How about when they stick it over their ear, "for later"?


of course it's always a second one they want, for later. That or they just finished one and they're already bumming more. I tend to give a cig to about anyone that wants one (my one hard and fast rule is never giving one to someone that looks to be underage), but at least realize that it's my property you're asking for.....NOT something you should just expect to get.

Russell

TastesLikeBurning
02-16-2006, 06:35 PM
...I've bummed and been bummed from across the world...


Context people, context.

jjimm
02-16-2006, 06:40 PM
Context people, context.Don't forget, it was fags he was bumming.

Kimstu
02-16-2006, 06:42 PM
Me: [Patronisingly] "Well do what I usually do in these circumstances is I get my money and I spend it on cigarettes so I don't have to beg."

:eek: And in an Oxford accent, too! She didn't just physically disintegrate from the sheer loftiness-impact? I guess when you live there you build up an immunity. ;)

I watched my step very carefully when I visited Oxford last fall, for fear somebody might speak patronizingly to me in an Oxford accent when I didn't have my shields up.

Hung Mung
02-16-2006, 06:48 PM
I've bummed out a lot of cigarettes. The only people I won't bum to are kids, quitters or friends who try to bum frequently. I knew one guy in college who tried to bum a smoke almost every time he saw me. I got fed up with it so one day I handed him the whole pack and said, "You can find these in stores now. The first pack's on me, but now you've gotta start buying your own."
Silly bastard stopped doing it after that.

Cerri
02-16-2006, 06:56 PM
At work, all the girls bum cigarettes pretty frequently, cause only a few of us carry them with us instead of keeping them in our lockers. However, the unspoken standard is for the bummer to give the bummee a buck in exchange for the smoke.

Works well for everyone, and I often make 10-15 bucks a night handing out smokes. ;)

gotpasswords
02-16-2006, 07:16 PM
From the beggars-can't-be-choosers files:

I once overheard the exchange between someone wanting to bum a smoke and the giver - the bummer gets a cig, lights up and then cries out "Oh man! it's MENTHOL!"

So, maybe you need to start smoking menthols to cut down on the requests for freebies.

Ensign Edison
02-16-2006, 07:19 PM
From the beggars-can't-be-choosers files:

I once overheard the exchange between someone wanting to bum a smoke and the giver - the bummer gets a cig, lights up and then cries out "Oh man! it's MENTHOL!"

So, maybe you need to start smoking menthols to cut down on the requests for freebies.

Oh, man, I can't believe I forgot about this! When I switched from Marlboros to Salems, I had this happen to me. I started warning people first, and sometimes they'd actually pass! :confused: What's so terrible about menthol?

Though, me, I wouldn't take a Camel unless really desperate. Always gave me headaches.

I remember the first time I saw someone pick a half-spent cigarette butt up off the street and try to smoke it. It didn't make sense until I was a smoker myself. I never had to do that, but I would have, you better fucking believe it.

Indygrrl
02-16-2006, 07:20 PM
At work, all the girls bum cigarettes pretty frequently, cause only a few of us carry them with us instead of keeping them in our lockers. However, the unspoken standard is for the bummer to give the bummee a buck in exchange for the smoke.
-

Come on now, you have to bum off the customers. That's what they are there for, right? Money, drinks, cigarettes, whateva. ;)

Skywatcher
02-16-2006, 07:26 PM
Though, me, I wouldn't take a Camel unless really desperate. Always gave me headaches. Menthol affects some people the same way.

saoirse
02-16-2006, 07:37 PM
I've bummed out a lot of cigarettes. The only people I won't bum to are kids, quitters or friends who try to bum frequently. I knew one guy in college who tried to bum a smoke almost every time he saw me. I got fed up with it so one day I handed him the whole pack and said, "You can find these in stores now. The first pack's on me, but now you've gotta start buying your own."
Silly bastard stopped doing it after that.

Oh, no bumming to quitters is essential. I just fell off the wagon and I get by on one to two cigarettes a day. I still have not bought a pack since February 18, 2005. If I had, I'd have picked up where I left off, at half a pack a day. When I quit again this Monday, it's the one-to-two-a-day habit I'll be kicking, though. Still not so easy, but easier.

ParentalAdvisory
02-16-2006, 07:41 PM
I'm not really a smoker, but to get away from the beggers, bring two packs with you all night long. One which is full, and the other always has your "last one". Refill your "last one" pack during bathroom breaks. :cool:

levdrakon
02-16-2006, 07:55 PM
I'm not really a smoker, but to get away from the beggers, bring two packs with you all night long. One which is full, and the other always has your "last one". Refill your "last one" pack during bathroom breaks. :cool:

I've actually done that in situations where there are lots of moochers. There are places where all of a sudden everyone wants to be a cool smoker for the night and since they don't have their own, you quickly become everyone's supplier. When I lived in DC, I carried an empty pack for all the street thugs so I could go "sure man, here you go... oh man, I guess I'm out." Then show them the empty pack. Beats getting mugged for saying "no."

I knew a guy who carried a pack of menthols in a separate pocket just for moochers.

Sgt.Pepper
02-16-2006, 08:04 PM
I've never expected or accepted money for a cigarette. Of course, unlike you, I've bummed enough in my time that I feel obligated to hand one out when asked. Matter of fact, I usually say, "Take two."

We'll see what the responses are like here; I hope there are more smokers like me than there are like you.

Yep, I was in that camp. Cigarette karma wasn't something I wanted to have bite me in the ass if I was jonesin. I think I've came out even over the years. Not from the same sources, but there was those that I bummed off often and those who frequently came to me.

Scissorjack
02-16-2006, 08:20 PM
As a side note for non-smokers wishing to observe the strange rituals of the hidden society of smokers, stop into the smoking lounge/area of an airport sometime.

What always strikes me is how egalitarian and multi-cultural that society is - step into the smokers room in an airport lounge after a 12 hour flight, and you'll get people of every hue, culture, language and status just hanging out, sucking down those precious fumes and all scrupulously observing the rituals.

One of the best places to see it is in Singapore, when there's a connecting flight to Dubai: you've got stinky unshaven backpackers doing Asia, Filipinos heading to the Gulf to work, oil workers ditto, Arabs going home, itinerant English teachers going wherever, high-powered suits - and they're all just chillin' in unspoken nicotine brother {and sister} hood.

pulykamell
02-16-2006, 08:35 PM
I was more like you. Hell, the camraderie of smokerdom is one of the things I miss. I got into a lot of conversations I never would have otherwise. I gave cigarettes to anybody who asked for them and never found myself wanting in hard times. Funny how that works.

Same here. Cigarettes have always been the universal currency and universal gesture of good will (yes, I know, irony and all that). That's one thing I do miss about smoking. When I used to photograph in third world countries, offering a cigarette was an easy way to put people at ease, and you'd be surprised at how damn useful cigarettes are when traveling through the interesting parts of the world.

I have never ever asked for money for a cigarette, and I have never ever not given a cigarette when asked. (Well, I did have one rule. I would never give my last cigarette away. I would break open a new pack and give that cigarette away. Why? I'm not superstitious or anything. I just like the little quirk.)Then again, I stopped smoking well before cigarettes were $7 a pack.

RyJae
02-16-2006, 08:42 PM
When going to the bars in my younger days I always, and I do mean always, carried my standard Marlboro's and a cheapie brand to give to those that asked. And believe me, when someone needs a smoke they didn't give a shit what kind they get.
I quit a few months ago, but still find it more understandable to loan a few bucks to a friend for cigarettes then I do for a lot of other things. Its an addiction man!

mrrealtime
02-16-2006, 09:04 PM
my favorite is "mind if I smoke?" Like saying "can I bum some time off your life?"

ducking...

Frank
02-16-2006, 09:11 PM
my favorite is "mind if I smoke?" Like saying "can I bum some time off your life?"
Then say, "Yes, I do mind." Sheesh, all the flak we get for being rude and inconsiderate, then when you try to be polite about it...

mrrealtime
02-16-2006, 09:19 PM
"can I bum a cigarette?"

"No, you cannot. Even though I have a lot of them."

"Sheesh what a jerk...mutter mutter mutter..."

"Mind if I smoke?"

"Yes, I do mind"

"Sheesh what a jerk...mutter mutter mutter..."

levdrakon
02-16-2006, 09:20 PM
my favorite is "mind if I smoke?" Like saying "can I bum some time off your life?"

ducking...

One of my favorites, back in the day when we were only just becoming pariahs, was sitting in a restaurant, whipping out a cig and saying "oh no! I don't mind if you eat while I smoke. Go ahead!"

mrrealtime
02-16-2006, 09:30 PM
One of my favorites, back in the day when we were only just becoming pariahs, was sitting in a restaurant, whipping out a cig and saying "oh no! I don't mind if you eat while I smoke. Go ahead!"

heh heh. Reminds me of "Dont pray in my school and I wont think in your church" or "we dont swim in your toilet so dont pee in our pool".

Hostile Dialect
02-16-2006, 09:33 PM
I've never expected or accepted money for a cigarette. Of course, unlike you, I've bummed enough in my time that I feel obligated to hand one out when asked. Matter of fact, I usually say, "Take two."

Yup, same here.

My situation is different, of course. I'm a college student and if a fellow student asks me for a cigarette or to buy them a soda or something, I can generally assume it's because they're dirt broke like me. Then, of course, there's the people who are always trying to bum a free lunch or a smoke or a ride or a bus fare or this or that off you and never offer something back. I stop short of spitting on these people.


I once overheard the exchange between someone wanting to bum a smoke and the giver - the bummer gets a cig, lights up and then cries out "Oh man! it's MENTHOL!"

These people really pissed me off when I was a smoker. I smoked expensive cigarettes exclusively, and if you don't consider it a privelege to smoke them, don't fucking smoke them. Because California groups smokers together ("you may only smoke under this sign") like wild monkeys in a cage, there are several other people smoking too, one of which is probably smoking your shitty brand. "Oh man! It's a CLOVE! Ugh!" Go smoke a GPC, rat bastard.

my favorite is "mind if I smoke?" Like saying "can I bum some time off your life?"

ducking...

You obviously want me to give you the rage of 10,000 suns. Sorry.

pulykamell
02-16-2006, 09:46 PM
"Oh man! It's a CLOVE! Ugh!" Go smoke a GPC, rat bastard.


Sorry, man, but that's understandable. Cloves make me dizzy and want to vomit. I can't stand the smell of them. For me, classy cigarettes equals something like Dunhills. Cloves should be in a category all their own, because they're quite different than cigarettes.

mrrealtime
02-16-2006, 10:03 PM
You obviously want me to give you the rage of 10,000 suns. Sorry.

:cool:

Burrido
02-16-2006, 10:03 PM
Heh, this reminds me of a co worker in college. We worked at a SuperAmerica Gas Station and everytime he sold a pack of Old Gold's, he would ask the customer for a cigarette. It actually worked enough that his broke ass rarely ever bought cigarettes.

Zoe
02-16-2006, 10:05 PM
davenportavenger, you can waste a lot of time in this world counting cigarettes. But what I don't get is why you choose to lie about your reason for not letting the second person bum. Can't you just be straight and say that you have reached your "bumming maximum" for the day?

If you think it will make you look like a butthole, well...there's a message in there for you.

I post this message in memory of Karen from Cairo who let me bum cigarettes for a year in college in the early 1960's. Sure, cigarettes were only 25 cents a pack, but I was living on $3 each a week. I've never forgotten you, kid!

Zoe
02-16-2006, 10:06 PM
*That should read that I was living on $3 each week.

davenportavenger
02-16-2006, 10:26 PM
davenportavenger, you can waste a lot of time in this world counting cigarettes. But what I don't get is why you choose to lie about your reason for not letting the second person bum. Can't you just be straight and say that you have reached your "bumming maximum" for the day?I don't have a good reason for that, other than that I couldn't think of anything else right then. I guess I could have said that since he obviously saw me give one to the first guy. I'll have to remember it for the future.

And yeah, I do give out cigarettes occasionally, usually one or two a week not counting the ones that pass between my housemate and me (since we usually smoke from the same packs and alternate buying packs). This just bugged me since I had just given one to someone. It felt like I was being taken advantage of, like when you want to be nice and give change to a homeless person and then you get mobbed. Then again, I am not really into smoking culture since I am such a light smoker. And also, I rarely ask for anything from anyone I don't know so to me, bumming cigarettes from strangers is rude. I will try to be more charitable in the future, although again, I'm not planning to give one out to everyone who asks. Otherwise, random strangers would be smoking more of my cigarettes than I do!

Actually, come to think of it I smoke exclusively menthols. Maybe I can drive off some of the bummers by stating that fact in advance?

Exploding Kitchen
02-16-2006, 10:31 PM
I have no problem bumming smokes to people, and whenever I run out and get the extreme urge to fill my nicotank, I always offer a quarter for the cigarette.

Few people accept the quarter, and I have yet to be turned down except by the "last cig" or "I bummed this one" people.

mhendo
02-16-2006, 10:35 PM
As a non-smoker, i've always been amazed by the way that cigarettes somehow operate outside certain parameters of social etiquette.

People who would never ask for spare change are happy to ask for a cigarette. People who would never give spare change are happy to share their cigarettes. It as, as Case Sensistive called it, a phenomenon of cigarette socialism. Very interesting.

Of course, there are also the less benign ways that cigarettes operate outside the parameters of social etiquette. Some people who would never throw a soda can or a hamburger wrapper on the ground strew cigarette butts around the landscape as if they were pixie dust.

Ensign Edison
02-16-2006, 10:47 PM
People who would never ask for spare change are happy to ask for a cigarette. People who would never give spare change are happy to share their cigarettes. It as, as Case Sensistive called it, a phenomenon of cigarette socialism. Very interesting.

This is even more true if all you need is a light.

myskepticsight
02-16-2006, 11:01 PM
I only bum from friends, so I will gladly give a friend a smoke or four. I have NEVER bummed a smoke from a random person.

But I am a poor college student. Cigs are expensive, but I haven't been able to quit.

In the past week, the same guy, out of a campus of over 20,000 asked me for a cig twice. Different days, outside different buildings, different times of the day. And both times I was running very low but gave him one anyway. Both times he offered me change. I should have told him the second time to keep his change until he can afford a pack. The first time you ask me for one, most likely yes. Don't make it a friggin habit if I don't know you.

And about the OP, I don't think it's cool to ask someone for a smoke when you saw that they just gave someone else one. They are not the 'free smokes line.'

And if you are a smoker, buy cigarettes. Don't be one of those people that will only smoke bummed ones. Either smoke, or don't. I don't want to waste my Camels on someone that can easily do without it.

jellyblue
02-17-2006, 12:21 AM
I don't smoke anymore, but I did for years (like, 20) and I can't remember EVER bumming a cigarette from someone. I was not in denial about the fact that I was a smoker, therefore I bought cartons of cigarettes, not packs ("Yes, I will most likely not be quitting in the next 10 days") so I was always prepared. If you are going to be an addict, I say, like Batman, be prepared. So while I would generally give cigarettes to people who bummed them, I kinda resented it ("Do you have an extra smoke?" "Why no, I really was planning on smoking them all.") I especially resented the psychiatrist I worked with who made $200,000 a year and bummed cigs off me every single day when I was a grad student living on student loans. Shit, I've probably worked 2 months out of my life paying interest on his fucking cigarettes! I also had a "policy" of not giving them to patients who asked when I was working inpatient facilities. I *definitely* wasn't making enough to subsidize all their habits!

DfrntBreign
02-17-2006, 12:59 AM
<snip> I've been thinking about putting together a site that encourages people to drop off their lighters on ashtrays at the airport before they go in. If we could get enough people doing this, no one would ever need to buy a lighter at their destination again. Drop yours off when you depart, pick one up off the ashtray when you arrive...
How strange. Just yesterday someone told me to look on top of the pay phones nearest the airport doorway. That is where you are supposed to exchange your "departing" lighter for the "arrival" lighter you pick up at your destination. I'm traveling next week and think I'll give it a try. I guess we're a little behind the curve, hunh?

As for the topic at hand, I've given out far more cigs than I've ever bummed, but with climbing prices and more vocal (and obnoxious) non-smokers, I'm getting less generous. I've found that a stranger's reaction to a polite denial is a pretty good barometer of their character. If they react gracefully, it's easy to say, "Just kidding" and hand 'em a smoke. Maybe you've just met a friend. If they react poorly, why would you want to engage or encourage a rude fuck like that, anyway?

Zebra
02-17-2006, 01:23 AM
I had this roomate that had super bum-a-cigarette abilities. This guy could bum a smoke anywhere. You could move him back in time to the dark ages and he would be able to bum a smoke. You could put him on the bridge of the Enterprise-D and he would be able to bum a smoke.


Of course, doing the dishes or paying the rent were different stories. But man, could that guy bum smokes.

Kalhoun
02-17-2006, 06:10 AM
I've never expected or accepted money for a cigarette. Of course, unlike you, I've bummed enough in my time that I feel obligated to hand one out when asked. Matter of fact, I usually say, "Take two."

We'll see what the responses are like here; I hope there are more smokers like me than there are like you.
I once worked with a perpetual "quitter." She got to the point where she didn't even ASK for the cigarettes anymore. She'd just plunk a quarter down on my desk and I'd give her two. She bummed a couple every day.

And I, too, don't mind when people bum cigarettes. If I have 'em, I'll share 'em.

Equipoise
02-17-2006, 06:28 AM
I've been trying to quit smoking for about a year now. I've tried several different methods and nothing has worked permanently. Patches help, but they're VERY expensive. As soon as I don't have a patch on, the nicotine fit starts pounding. If I'm out of patches I start panicing. It costs over $50.00 for a box of patches, about the same as a carton here in Chicago (the price for a carton will be over $60.00 soon). Paying over $6.00 a pack is outrageous, but one pack is a lot cheaper than a box of Patches. There will be times when I don't have the money for a box of patches, but do have the money for one pack.

Anyway, there are times when I just need ONE cigarette. Just one, just to take the edge off, then I'll be ok for a while. The longest I've gone without a cig so far is 17 days. I felt I had to give myself permission to smoke if I wanted, because if I didn't, and backslid, I would feel like a terrible failure and depression would set in. Smoking one cigarette then getting back on the patch keeps me from going crazy.

The problem is, if I'm out of patches, and I need that ONE cigarette, I have to buy a whole pack, which sets me off smoking again, because I'm incapable of throwing away cigs. Often I've wished that I could by half packs, or even single cigarettes to keep me from buying a pack, and not because of the cost. I HATE bumming from people, and in the past year I've only done it once, but if I could do it more often, it would help me. I just can't bring myself to do it. I always give cigarettes if someone asks me though.

catsix
02-17-2006, 07:07 AM
Necros said:
As a side note for non-smokers wishing to observe the strange rituals of the hidden society of smokers, stop into the smoking lounge/area of an airport sometime. Because of lighters being banned after security checkpoints, it's like a strange tribalistic thing where people are exchanging lit cigarettes for the flame, and none is willing to let it go out.

Non-smokers would be amazed at how revered is the one person in that smoking lounge who thought to bring matches. I brought 3 packets of matches with me when I was flying out of PIT. One had only 5 or 6 matches left in it at the time I was in the smoking lounge, but those few matches must've lit 50 cigarettes for fear that we, the band of brothers, the smokers, would run out of matches. I left behind a whole packet of matches for good will when I left.

On the way back, the good will was returned, as I had no cigarettes and no matches on me when I got back to PIT, but some nice soul in one of the smoker's bars gave me a few cigarettes and a packet of matches!

Smoking karma should never be pissed on.

cowgirl
02-17-2006, 10:23 AM
I roll my own.

I share with anyone who asks, and I'll even offer to roll one up for you. Still, I don't get many takers.

Yet another benefit of rolling as you go.

Amazon Floozy Goddess
02-17-2006, 11:17 AM
And the next shadowy dude who asks for one is getting a butt in the eye, I swear to God.

Better yet...get one of those cigarettes from the joke shop that either asplode or don't light. Some of those joke smokes can look pretty real if you're not inspecting them. Hide it away in your pack and offer it to the next yahoo who wants a free smoke.

GrizzRich
02-17-2006, 11:18 AM
I find this line particularly amusing...

/snip/...I'm not really a smoker.../snip/

Friend... if you carry TWO packs of cigs with you... you're a SMOKER!

Necros
02-17-2006, 11:37 AM
How strange. Just yesterday someone told me to look on top of the pay phones nearest the airport doorway. That is where you are supposed to exchange your "departing" lighter for the "arrival" lighter you pick up at your destination. I'm traveling next week and think I'll give it a try. I guess we're a little behind the curve, hunh?
Guess I am. I'll definitely start looking for, and leaving, lighters on top of pay phones. Glad to know I'm not the only person who has thought of this. :)

Ensign Edison
02-17-2006, 11:42 AM
As for the topic at hand, I've given out far more cigs than I've ever bummed, but with climbing prices and more vocal (and obnoxious) non-smokers, I'm getting less generous. I've found that a stranger's reaction to a polite denial is a pretty good barometer of their character. If they react gracefully, it's easy to say, "Just kidding" and hand 'em a smoke. Maybe you've just met a friend. If they react poorly, why would you want to engage or encourage a rude fuck like that, anyway?

Man, if only I had the time to use strangers as subjects in my personal little psych experiments.

You probably think I'm being sarcastic...

David Simmons
02-17-2006, 12:12 PM
I'm sure glad I quit. I never realized bumming etiquette was so difficult. I must have been considered a real outsider since I neither gave out nor asked for a cigarette.

kidchameleon
02-17-2006, 12:37 PM
Better yet...get one of those cigarettes from the joke shop that either asplode or don't light. Some of those joke smokes can look pretty real if you're not inspecting them. Hide it away in your pack and offer it to the next yahoo who wants a free smoke.

Or candy cigarettes. I went as Death this Halloween and handed those out. It's hard to flick a bic with those nylon skeleton gloves on.

Gangster Octopus
02-17-2006, 12:43 PM
In our smallish group of friends we have one smoker. And then we have the one guy who only smokes when we go out, so he never has cigarettes. Which means he was constantly bumming off the smoker. I say was, because after months and months of this the smoker finally just yelled, "No, dammit, you cannot "borrow" a cigarette. Get your own friggin' cigarettes."

"Mind if I smoke?"

"Not at all. Mind if I fart?"

Hostile Dialect
02-17-2006, 01:11 PM
Sorry, man, but that's understandable. Cloves make me dizzy and want to vomit. I can't stand the smell of them.

I would assume, then, that you would be able to tell by the smell that I'm smoking cloves, and you wouldn't ask me for one and then bitch about it. Right? I mean, I understand this. What I don't understand is someone smelling it a mile away--which even a smoker should be able to--and then getting one and going into Sherlock Holmes mode and saying "Drat! A clove, Watson!" I would generally assume that anyone who has ever smoked a clove or known a clove smoker can tell the very distinctive smell from a ways away.

Few people accept the quarter, and I have yet to be turned down except by the "last cig" or "I bummed this one" people.

FWIW, I always accepted the quarter, because I was always broke (still am).

And BTW whoever said earlier that her and her friends paid each other a doller per cigarette is gravely overestimating the monetary value of tobacco.

I roll my own.

I share with anyone who asks, and I'll even offer to roll one up for you. Still, I don't get many takers.

Yet another benefit of rolling as you go.

I used to do this too. I find you're a lot more likely to make a friend sharing a rollie than a pre-rolled cig, because you can make conversation while you're rolling it and the other person has something to say "Wow! That's so cool, I don't know anybody else who does that" about, which can be a nice little icebreaker.

jjimm
02-17-2006, 01:15 PM
One of the best places to see it is in Singapore, when there's a connecting flight to Dubai: you've got stinky unshaven backpackers doing Asia, Filipinos heading to the Gulf to work, oil workers ditto, Arabs going home, itinerant English teachers going wherever, high-powered suits - and they're all just chillin' in unspoken nicotine brother {and sister} hood.Woh. The hairs on the back of my neck just stood up.

I was in Singapore airport last month, in the smoking room, looking around the diverse population of whites and Arabs and Chinese and blacks and south-east Asians, and I laughed to myself internally with the words "the brotherhood of nicotine." Freaky.

Yeticus Rex
02-17-2006, 01:29 PM
I don't smoke, but I have toyed with the idea of having a pack on hand and giving away a cigarette to anyone who wants one, once they have picked up at least 100 cigarette butts off of the surrounding ground. It's not the hard to do nowadays.

Mr. Goob
02-17-2006, 01:31 PM
The brotherhood thing indeed.

The only time in the Navy I can recall officers and enlisted men just being guys was in 10 minute chunks in designated smoking areas.

When I was young and going to bars most every night I would often have my smokes in one pocket and a deck of unfiltered Lucky Strikes in the other for moochers.

PunditLisa
02-17-2006, 01:50 PM
Back in high school, we'd hit MickeyD's after a movie. One girlfriend, "Kelly," who was on a perpetual diet, would never order fries with her meal. The rest of us suffered no pangs of conscience, so we'd order fries. Keep in mind that this was a time before an order of fries was large enough to feed a small refugee camp.

Anywho, throughout the meal, her resolve would crumble and she'd start "sneaking" fries from OUR trays. And then a few more. And then a few more. By the end of the meal she ended up with more fries than any of us. And while I consider myself to be a generous person, her habit of stealing half of my fries really got on my nerves.

I didn't realize that everyone was as irritated with her habit as I was until one memorable day when Kelly "slyly" reached for one fry too many from my friend Jennifer's tray. Jennifer had had enough. She picked up what was left of her fries and threw them on Kelly's plate and said, "TAKE THE DAMN FRIES, KELLY!"

From then on, Kelly ordered her own fries.

So seriously, folks, if you're addicted, quit pretending that borrowing cigarettes from other people somehow doesn't count. Buy your own damn cigarettes.

saoirse
02-17-2006, 02:55 PM
These people really pissed me off when I was a smoker. I smoked expensive cigarettes exclusively, and if you don't consider it a privelege to smoke them, don't fucking smoke them. Because California groups smokers together ("you may only smoke under this sign") like wild monkeys in a cage, there are several other people smoking too, one of which is probably smoking your shitty brand. "Oh man! It's a CLOVE! Ugh!" Go smoke a GPC, rat bastard.

That person was very rude. The correct response to someone smoking cloves is to say, "Man, I think that ham is done already!"

uglybeech
02-17-2006, 02:59 PM
I've found that a stranger's reaction to a polite denial is a pretty good barometer of their character. If they react gracefully, it's easy to say, "Just kidding" and hand 'em a smoke. Maybe you've just met a friend.The start of a beautiful and incredibly dysfunctional relationship.

Mtgman
02-17-2006, 03:01 PM
The problem is, if I'm out of patches, and I need that ONE cigarette, I have to buy a whole pack, which sets me off smoking again, because I'm incapable of throwing away cigs. Often I've wished that I could by half packs, or even single cigarettes to keep me from buying a pack, and not because of the cost. I HATE bumming from people, and in the past year I've only done it once, but if I could do it more often, it would help me. I just can't bring myself to do it. I always give cigarettes if someone asks me though.Could you buy a pack, smoke one, then leave the pack in the smoking area, maybe with a little sign saying "share and enjoy" or something? That way you get your one and only one, but it isn't like throwing them away because you know someone is going to pick them up. Kind of like getting the one you need and then giving the rest away before you can be tempted by them.

Enjoy,
Steven

TellMeI'mNotCrazy
02-17-2006, 04:46 PM
When I worked in NYC I used to swear I had a sign on my head that broadcast my willingness to give out smokes - every day, someone would ask me. I know what it's like to not have a cig, so I'd usually give them one. But, I had good cigarette karma there, I guess, because there was a tobacco shop a couple of blocks away that would actually give me cigarettes and let me bring my money whenever I had it. The first time I was brave enough to ask (funny how brave a person can be when they're in the throes of withdrawal) they actually offered to give me a carton, but I just asked for three packs to get me through the end of the week. Of course, I always paid them when I said I would, and I had the peace of mind of knowing that I'd never be smokeless at work.

Roadside hawkers are a big thing here, selling everything from those umbrella nets you put over your food to little toy guitars. I never buy from them, but if I happen to be smoking a cigarette (which is most of the time when I'm driving) it never fails that the person will ask me for a cigarette. Whether I'll give one is determined mostly by my mood - if I gave every time, I'd have no cigarettes for myself (these people are literally at every traffic light) and half the time, I think they just sell them to other people rather than smoke them themselves.

But generally, I'll lend one if I've got it to spare. They say smoking is more addictive than heroin, and I tend to believe it sometimes. I know I've hit some pretty rough lows - rooting through my ashtrays looking for anything that hasn't been smoked to the filter, to even guiltily eyeing mostly unsmoked cigarettes in public ashtrays. I've never actually sunk so low as to swipe one, but I have definitely considered it. It's when I'm that low that I'll ask a complete stranger walking down the street if they might have an extra cigarette - better that than smoking someone else's discarded butt!

Frank
02-17-2006, 04:48 PM
... better that than smoking someone else's discarded butt!
In my younger days, I would scavenge them for the tobacco, and roll it into a new cigarette. A nasty, foul, horrible cigarette.

Scissorjack
02-17-2006, 05:18 PM
Could you buy a pack, smoke one, then leave the pack in the smoking area, maybe with a little sign saying "share and enjoy" or something?

Go stick your head in a pig.

jjimm
02-17-2006, 07:05 PM
A propos of nothing, I have to say the worst place for bumming fags I've ever seen was in the Castro in San Francisco (now stop that, you in the cheap seats). Almost every thirty seconds someone asked me for a cigarette when I was smoking outside the bar. At first I was irritated, but eventually indulged, after some banter which resulted in some great impromptu street theater. I swear on my mother's life, one of the guys who asked for a cigarette was dragging his boyfriend along on a leash.

Birdmonster
02-17-2006, 07:14 PM
To add to countless personal observation, I give freely and try not to bum. Once in a while, one of the more notorious bummers will come around with a pack for me. It's damn near utopian.

Not to say I don't empathize with the OP. I've been there, I've felt that way. Most days though I say, "Yeah, you need a light?"

There is this ONE guy though...rides my bus. I actually saw him take a cigarette out, notice I was smoking, put that cigarette back into a half full pack, and then ask if he could bum one.

And that, ladies and gentlemen is why communism doesn't work.

God, I hate that guy. Just thinking about it...Excuse me, I must go grind my teeth for a while.

Birdmonster
02-17-2006, 07:22 PM
...and, obviously, I told half-pack guy to go fuck himself.

saoirse
02-17-2006, 07:27 PM
In my younger days, I would scavenge them for the tobacco, and roll it into a new cigarette. A nasty, foul, horrible cigarette.

Ah yes. The old Zig-Zag Mongrel. even better if you get some menthol in there, along with something nasty like Camels

Hostile Dialect
02-17-2006, 07:57 PM
In my younger days, I would scavenge them for the tobacco, and roll it into a new cigarette. A nasty, foul, horrible cigarette.

In my younger days, my dealer-friend and I used to do this with another popular smokeable plant; but I can't say I've ever done it with tobacco.

Now that I think about it, same guy and I did something similar. He smoked filterless cigs for a while, and a lot of times we would scavenge those butts for tobacco, because obviously there was no filter to smoke down to. Generally, though, we just used the tobacco in joints, not for more cigarettes.

TheLoadedDog
02-17-2006, 08:02 PM
I'm surprised at this "smoking karma" thing. Oh sure I've seen it in bars, airports, and happy touristy places where everybody is drunk on sun and cheap beer, but on the streets of Sydney? Nope. No way. I have NEVER been offered one, but when I was smoking I would be asked by some scumbag NEARLY EVERY TIME that I pulled out a packet. At the station. At the bus stop. On the street... People wearing expensive clothes too, quite often.

Sometimes I'd give. But then I got sick of things like "I couldn't have another one for later, could I?" This thread makes me feel like a bad person, but I don't think I am. The moochers were pushy and had this attitude that it was their devine right to bludge smokes from me - and they are more expensive here than in the States (for those who see nothing wrong with bumming cigarettes, would you ask the same stranger to spend a couple of minutes operating a machine in a factory? Because that is what you're effectively doing if that guy has to go to work to pay for his cigarettes).

So yes, I started out giving. Then the moochers got more and more arrogant and less and less grateful, so I gave less and less. Then it was a curt "No!" without even slowing down, and finally sometimes a firey look and, "Get a fucking job!"

Does that make me an arsehole? I don't think so, but YMMV.

TheLoadedDog
02-17-2006, 08:13 PM
And for the record, I have never ever asked a stranger for a cigarette. Even if I was jonesing big time, that was my problem for being addicted to nicotine and not some random stranger's problem. Similarly, if I didn't have money for a bus fare, I'd fucking walk. I wouldn't dream of asking strangers for shit like that.

saoirse
02-17-2006, 08:16 PM
I have NEVER been offered one, but when I was smoking I would be asked by some scumbag NEARLY EVERY TIME that I pulled out a packet. At the station. At the bus stop. On the street... People wearing expensive clothes too, quite often.

Sometimes I'd give. But then I got sick of things like "I couldn't have another one for later, could I?" ... The moochers were pushy and had this attitude that it was their devine right to bludge smokes from me...

So yes, I started out giving. Then the moochers got more and more arrogant and less and less grateful, so I gave less and less. Then it was a curt "No!" without even slowing down, and finally sometimes a firey look and, "Get a fucking job!"

Does that make me an arsehole? I don't think so, but YMMV.

Well there is an etiquette to this, you know. Cigarette Karma isn't about people walking up and handing you smokes, you still have to ask. Also, NEVER feel bad about turning someone down if they ask for more than they can smoke right then. Bummed cigarettes are like manna from heaven. They cannot be saved or stored. You must simply have faith that there will be more.

Hostile Dialect
02-17-2006, 08:33 PM
Bummed cigarettes are like manna from heaven. They cannot be saved or stored. You must simply have faith that there will be more.

Can I put this in my sig?

jjimm
02-17-2006, 08:36 PM
I'm getting a distinct "US vs. other English-speaking countries" vibe here in terms of socio-cultural acceptability of this practice.

Sampiro
02-18-2006, 01:44 AM
I was out with my cousin and his ice queen girlfriend once and had a moment of near Seinfeldian minutiae based obsession. I didn't like the girl anyway- I thought she was condescending, boring, a person of totally unwarranted self-esteem and ego and amazingly mannerless, but I tolerated her because she was my cousin's castrating domineering neurotic girlfriend of the moment (later wife, didn't last long).

We were in a bar when a young lady came up to her and said "Can I please buy one of your cigarettes? I'll give you a dollar for one...", smiling and holding out her dollar. Tracy (cousin's girlfriend), without ever speaking, gives her a cigarette, takes the dollar, and then resumes her drink or whatever. For the rest of the evening I'm obsessing over the fact that she took the dollar! You don't TAKE the dollar!

It's elementary three-step Dixie Bushido.

1. A woman/person offers you a dollar for the cigarette. This allows them to maintain their pride. "I am not a beggar, I offer you fair recompense*."

2. You politely make eye contact, possibly saying "sure" or "of course" even. You then flip open the pack until one juts out and motion for them to take it.

3. Supplicant offers you the dollar with a gesture that you respond to by gently raising your hand palm-out and waving from left to right to left not more than three times to convey 'think nothing of it Querida, it is my pleasure to give'.[/I] The transaction is complete, the supplicant has their cigarette, you have the content of being a gracious person, all honor and pride is intact.

And in fact in fact $1 was UNfair recompense" for cigarettes for at the time a pack of smokes was just over $2 (this was during one of the Marlboro price wars) and you gave her 1, that's a 1000% profit if you accept it!

I literally couldn't concentrate on the conversation for several minutes because all that would reverberate through my synapses was BITCH TOOK THE DOLLAR! I was convinced a car was going to crash through the window of the bar and into our table as the Cotton Gods punished Tracy for her act, and I feared being in her presence.

She later married and quickly divorced my cousin and entered a live-in relationship with a guy who was arrested for embezzlement. I know why it happened, but I doubt she does.

Diogenes the Cynic
02-18-2006, 02:18 AM
When I smoked I always gave out heaters freely to anyone who asked and was always provided for in turn if I was tapped. I think there's a natural empathy among smokers for fellow smokers who are Jonesing. Everybody's been there and knows what it's like. Everyone knows that at some point they'll probably be there again. It really is kind of an unspoken bit of smokers' ettiquette to help a brother out when he needs it.

There are, of course, people who abuse this system. Aside from cheapskate moochers, there are also, as levdrakon alluded to, also the "quitters" who quit buying theor own packs but can't quite seem to either quit sponging smokes off of others or actually...you know....stopping smokers.

Still, unless somebody proves themselves to be a habitual mooch, the ettiquette is always to to give. Actually bumming smokes or being bummed for smokes really isn't a bad way to start a conversation with with a chick (or whatever yiour preference is). Asking for a light is even better because you're not really asking them to give you anything but it's an excuse to talk to them. I used that tactic once or twice even though i had a lighter in my pocket.

Sampiro
02-18-2006, 02:31 AM
Actually bumming smokes or being bummed for smokes really isn't a bad way to start a conversation with with a chick (or whatever yiour preference is). Asking for a light is even better because you're not really asking them to give you anything but it's an excuse to talk to them. I used that tactic once or twice even though i had a lighter in my pocket.

While meeting chicks has never been a big priority with me, I have to admit that the social aspects of smoking are the thing I missed most during the 3.5 years I quit. As an icebreaker it's simply unparalleled. I work in a not particularly friendly place and almost all of my closer workplace friends I know solely from the Smoker's Corner. Whenever I've gone to conferences the contacts I make the most of are gained through smoking. If somebody could provide a social patch to go along with the Nicotine patch I think the habit would be forever licked.

Scissorjack
02-18-2006, 05:41 AM
While meeting chicks has never been a big priority with me, I have to admit that the social aspects of smoking are the thing I missed most during the 3.5 years I quit. As an icebreaker it's simply unparalleled. I work in a not particularly friendly place and almost all of my closer workplace friends I know solely from the Smoker's Corner. Whenever I've gone to conferences the contacts I make the most of are gained through smoking. If somebody could provide a social patch to go along with the Nicotine patch I think the habit would be forever licked.

Oh, the chick thing - or guy thing, for all I know - works: there's a built-in rapport already, you know she's not gonna turn up her nose at your filthy habit, and if there's a hint of interest there the chances for lingering hand contact manifest themselves pretty quick: you wanna hold my wrist while I light you? OK, looks like I'm in.

I've been on the wagon for nearly 6 weeks, and damn, but this thread makes me want to wander outside and light up: bad thread! Bad!

calm kiwi
02-18-2006, 06:16 AM
Oh, the chick thing - or guy thing, for all I know - works: there's a built-in rapport already, you know she's not gonna turn up her nose at your filthy habit, and if there's a hint of interest there the chances for lingering hand contact manifest themselves pretty quick: you wanna hold my wrist while I light you? OK, looks like I'm in.

I've been on the wagon for nearly 6 weeks, and damn, but this thread makes me want to wander outside and light up: bad thread! Bad!

Awww keep going! I have developed this wee bet with myself, if you can make six months then I can do better then the three days I did 2 weeks ago! Feel the burden? :D

Though smoking is anti social to most it is very social us hardy few. I would never turn down a smoke to a fellow addict. Although I can't remember the last time I asked a stranger for a fag, I know I have. I have also given away many. If I was in dire need I would like to think that a fellow smoker would not say no, rather they would see the desperate glint in my nicotine deprived eyes, recognise it, and end the suffering!

That said, smokes are bloody expensive and I don't blame the OP for turning down the second 'bummer', he was just taking the piss.

Scissorjack
02-18-2006, 06:24 AM
Awww keep going! I have developed this wee bet with myself, if you can make six months then I can do better then the three days I did 2 weeks ago! Feel the burden? :D

What do I win?

Has anyone noticed how...mellow...this thread is for the Pit? No vituperation, just smokers wandering in to share reminiscences. We few, we happy few.

calm kiwi
02-18-2006, 07:16 AM
What do I win?

Has anyone noticed how...mellow...this thread is for the Pit? No vituperation, just smokers wandering in to share reminiscences. We few, we happy few.

You win the "another one bites the dust" annual award...sponsored by coughers everywhere.

Why are you still calling yourself a smoker? You're a quitter remember! One of the tough guys!

Smokers are mellow...until you take their smokes.

saoirse
02-18-2006, 12:43 PM
Can I put this in my sig?

I would be honored.

I am again joining that race of angry, warm individuals known as non-smokers on Monday. Until then, I can talk smoke all I want.

Scissorjack
02-18-2006, 03:11 PM
Why are you still calling yourself a smoker? You're a quitter remember! One of the tough guys!

I figure it's not official until I pass the three month mark. Besides, I prefer to refer to myself as a "recovering smoker": it has that therapy-speak ring of professional victimhood about it.

Hostile Dialect
02-18-2006, 03:37 PM
If somebody could provide a social patch to go along with the Nicotine patch I think the habit would be forever licked.

No kidding. I miss that way more than anything else, by far.


I would be honored.

Then honored shall you be!

AuntiePam
02-18-2006, 03:58 PM
I work in a not particularly friendly place and almost all of my closer workplace friends I know solely from the Smoker's Corner.

Oh yes. At my last job, I wasn't just new, I was new and from someplace far away. I didn't learn until later that some of my co-workers thought I might have an attitude, being from the city and all. :rolleyes: My now best friend asked me early on, "Do you think we're backward?"

Smoking broke the ice. It was something we immediately had in common. If I hadn't been a smoker, I might have taken it up, just for the sociability.

Hostile Dialect
02-18-2006, 04:06 PM
My now best friend asked me early on, "Do you think we're backward?"

Are they?

jayjay
02-18-2006, 04:14 PM
Are they?

Only if they light the filter.

jellyblue
02-18-2006, 04:53 PM
Only if they light the filter.

*snort!* :D
(ow.)

AuntiePam
02-18-2006, 06:36 PM
:)

Not at all. Well, maybe a little bit. You can still see big hair here, and mullets.

But cigarettes are cheap -- $27 a carton, $20 or less for generics.

Mince
02-18-2006, 08:15 PM
<snip>

Even when I'm really dying for a cigarette (which I never am, because I'm not addicted)

<snip>


You inject smoke into your lungs....purposefully. And you are not addicted?

TheLoadedDog
02-18-2006, 08:24 PM
You inject smoke into your lungs....purposefully. And you are not addicted?
I've essentially stopped smoking, and I consider myself a non-smoker. Last week, I was offered a cigarette by a workmate, and I accepted. This is because I wanted to enjoy a cigarette. I am an adult aware of the dangers of smoking, and I made a conscious decision to indulge. I smoked the cigarette. I enjoyed doing so. Days later, and I'm not jonesing for nicotine. Even typing this isn't doing it. I might have another cigarette next week, or maybe next month, or in six month's time. I may go out drinking beer and have five or six smokes in a night.

So yes, I am capable of "injecting smoke into my lungs purposefully" without being addicted.

Not everybody who draws wine into their belly is an alcoholic either.

Hostile Dialect
02-18-2006, 08:24 PM
You inject smoke into your lungs....purposefully. And you are not addicted?

You throw burning alcohol down your hatch....purposefully. And you are not addicted?

You ingest scalding hot coffee/tea down your throat....purposefully. And you are not addicted?

You eat sauce that burns your lips....purposefully. And you are not addicted?

You eat candies that make people fat....purposefully. And you are not addicted?

You may or may not do any of these things, but I'm sure you know at least one person who does, and you don't consider them an addict. If you do consider them all addicts, well, you're either a nutcase or part of a relatively extreme religious group; in either case, I hope you find the thread you were looking for.

davenportavenger
02-18-2006, 11:25 PM
You inject smoke into your lungs....purposefully. And you are not addicted?No, I'm not, not anymore than a person who drinks an occasional beer is addicted, or someone who smokes a joint once in a blue moon is addicted, or someone who buys the occasional lottery ticket is addicted. I know it's not for everyone, but I enjoy the taste of cigarettes and the slight effect of nicotine on my mood. I can quit smoking for days and weeks with almost no effects, so I know I'm not addicted. It's purely a taste and slight drug-effect thing.

Also, smoking makes me look really cool. Like the Fonz.

Mince
02-19-2006, 01:21 AM
You throw burning alcohol down your hatch....purposefully. And you are not addicted?

You ingest scalding hot coffee/tea down your throat....purposefully. And you are not addicted?

You eat sauce that burns your lips....purposefully. And you are not addicted?

You eat candies that make people fat....purposefully. And you are not addicted?

You may or may not do any of these things, but I'm sure you know at least one person who does, and you don't consider them an addict. If you do consider them all addicts, well, you're either a nutcase or part of a relatively extreme religious group; in either case, I hope you find the thread you were looking for.


Are you sincerely equating eating hot sauce to smoking? I did not indicate that the activities that you have described herein are or are not addictive. You would have to ask a qualified psychiatrist.

Smoking is something no reasonable human being would do unless there was an addiction, regardless of how much or how infrequently. If you can provide evidence to the contrary; I'd love to hear it.

mhendo
02-19-2006, 01:23 AM
Smoking is something no reasonable human being would do unless there was an addiction, regardless of how much or how infrequently. If you can provide evidence to the contrary; I'd love to hear it.Easy.

People start smoking.

Presumably, they aren't already addicted to nicotine when they have their first cigarette. This suggests that they have other reasons for smoking than addiction.

Diogenes the Cynic
02-19-2006, 01:33 AM
But anyone who continues to use nicotine with any degree of regularity will eventually develop a physical dependenc to it. That's a just a biological inevitability. There are not special people who are born with ability to regulatly use physically addictive substances with immunity.

mhendo
02-19-2006, 01:43 AM
But anyone who continues to use nicotine with any degree of regularity will eventually develop a physical dependence to it. That's a just a biological inevitability. There are not special people who are born with ability to regulatly use physically addictive substances with immunity.Sure, but Mince seemed to be suggesting that, given our knowledge about the health effects of smoking, that no-one would ever do it at all if not for the addictive effects. I merely pointed out that people who take up smoking usually do so (at least nowdays) with full knowledge of its dangers, and also without yet being addicted. Nor are these people always impressionable teenagers.

It seems to me that this fairly obvious fact contradicts Mince's rather bald assertion that "Smoking is something no reasonable human being would do unless there was an addiction."

Also, even among smokers who are addicted, and who know they are addicted, attitudes about quitting vary considerably. Many regret starting, hate their addiction, and wish they could quit. On the other end of the spectrum, though, are those who have not even the slightest desire to quit, who wouldn't quit even if they could, and who are happy to take the health risks that come with doing something that they enjoy. Sure these people are addicted, but some of them would probably smoke even if it weren't addictive.

For better or worse, most of us do things that we know are bad for us.

elfkin477
02-19-2006, 02:10 AM
Sorry, man, but that's understandable. Cloves make me dizzy and want to vomit. I can't stand the smell of them. For me, classy cigarettes equals something like Dunhills. Cloves should be in a category all their own, because they're quite different than cigarettes.

As a non-smoker, I find this interesting. Being around cigarette smoke for long gives me a headache (hence I've never had the burning desire to try smoking)...except cloves. I sort of like the smell, actually. OTOH, they remind me of a guy I went to college with, so there's that :D

jayjay
02-19-2006, 02:13 AM
When I was smoking, I would smoke cloves very occasionally. I couldn't smoke them too often because they were entirely too greasy and would just coat my throat with the clove oil from the smoke.

Mince
02-19-2006, 02:19 AM
Easy.

People start smoking.

Presumably, they aren't already addicted to nicotine when they have their first cigarette. This suggests that they have other reasons for smoking than addiction.

Of course. You describe what psychologists attribute to "peer pressure" in a lot of cases. That is possibly why a lot of individuals start smoking. But I can't imagine too many adults feel pressure, from their colleagues or friends, to smoke. Likely, those who continue to smoke are addicted.

We are left, then, with the occasional smoker; who claims they are not addicted. What, then, is their impetus for smoking, even only occasionally? Is it peer pressure?

I have the suspicion that I'm hijacking the thread. But I'm hoping davenportavenger, or another occasional smoker could rationalize why they smoke "on occasion." And I don't think "because I enjoy an occasional cigarrette like you enjoy an occasional beer" will satiate my curiosity. I do enjoy an occasion alcoholic beverage; but I do believe it is because I am addicted. I enjoy the way it makes me feel. It gives my pleasure. Much like the aforementioned hot sauce and candy. I concede that it does not make a person summarily addicted. But it also does not make a person summarily not addicted, based solely on the premise of occasional use.

mhendo
02-19-2006, 02:32 AM
Perhaps, if you're going to push this debate, you could offer us a clinical definition of "addicted," and then a clinical definition of "summarily addicted" and "summarily not addicted."

Is this a sliding scale, an incremental scale, or the use of made-up terms?

Mince
02-19-2006, 02:40 AM
Sure, but Mince seemed to be suggesting that, given our knowledge about the health effects of smoking, that no-one would ever do it at all if not for the addictive effects.


I am asserting this very hypothesis. If not for addiction, why do something, with knowledge, that is so counterproductive to your well being? There has to be an altered psychological state (perhaps not addiction). Obviously people smoke, even the occasional smokers, for the pleasure. Is pleasure an addiction? I don't think that question could be rightfully answered. But it is possible. If you believe in Freud's pleasure principle and that man does everything in accordance to pleasure and against pain; and pleasure is an addiction (which is not wholly unlikely), then everything we do could be considered an addiction, even the infrequent things, like browsing a message board or reading a newspaper.

But I guess my root question remains: What about smoking gives someone so much pleasure that he does it counterintuitively?

Mince
02-19-2006, 02:53 AM
Perhaps, if you're going to push this debate, you could offer us a clinical definition of "addicted," and then a clinical definition of "summarily addicted" and "summarily not addicted."

Is this a sliding scale, an incremental scale, or the use of made-up terms?


No, I won't push. As I've already indicated, I am hijacking. But for clarification: By "not summarily addicted", I simply mean that perhaps one should not be judged an addict simply because he smokes occasionally. And "summarily not addicted" means the inverse.

This is hardly a scientific debate on my part. It is more of an intuitive discussion. And it seems counter-intuitive that someone would smoke without being addicted, absent other compelling psychological factors. That is all.

Kimstu
02-19-2006, 07:18 AM
Smoking is something no reasonable human being would do unless there was an addiction, regardless of how much or how infrequently. If you can provide evidence to the contrary; I'd love to hear it. [...]

We are left, then, with the occasional smoker; who claims they are not addicted. What, then, is their impetus for smoking, even only occasionally? Is it peer pressure?

I have the suspicion that I'm hijacking the thread. But I'm hoping davenportavenger, or another occasional smoker could rationalize why they smoke "on occasion."


Well, as I said, I haven't done any real smoking since high school (and it wasn't much even then, but it was at least at the level where I would buy a pack for myself from time to time). But I will still smoke a very occasional cigarette (or small cigar, and no Monica Lewinsky jokes, please) when in the company of smokers. As in, this happens once every two to three years, on average. That "occasional" enough for you?

Why? Hell if I know, really. I like setting things on fire. I like the sort of "tea ceremony" ritualized gestures of lighting and holding and tapping and waving the cig. I like the half-scary feeling of drawing smoke into my lungs, and I like exhaling it ("Look at me! I'm a DRAGON!"). I like that smokers don't have to worry about whether their smoke is bothering me, since I'm smoking myself. I like the soothing effect of the nicotine. I like that some guys find it sexy.

And no, I don't worry at all about its being bad for me. Smoking one cigarette every two or three years is absolutely negligible as a health risk. And I really don't see how anybody could realistically describe that level of consumption as an "addiction".

Hostile Dialect
02-19-2006, 02:38 PM
Are you sincerely equating eating hot sauce to smoking?

Yes. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capsaicin)

I did not indicate that the activities that you have described herein are or are not addictive.

Are you familiar with the term "analogy"? All of the activities I've described herein contain potentially addictive drugs (alcohol, caffeine, capsaicin, caffeine), just like nicotine. Lots of people use each of them in moderation, just like nicotine. Is smoking a terrible thing to do to your body? Yes. Are there a lot of people who smoke without being addicted? Yes. As a non-smoker, you don't notice it because (a) the ones who catch your attention are the addicts and (b) when someone's smoking a cigarette there's no way to tell they're not addicted, although you can tell if they are addicted if you see them chain-smoke or go into withdrawal.

Smoking is something no reasonable human being would do unless there was an addiction, regardless of how much or how infrequently. If you can provide evidence to the contrary; I'd love to hear it.

I can't provide evidence as to what a "reasonable" or "unreasonable" person would do, because there's no operational definition of "reasonable" and I'm not going to play with one we make up here, either. This isn't a nitpick: your argument is "you must be insane or an addict to smoke". This Martin Hyde-like characterization of all people unlike you as being mentally ill is something I'd rather not justify by finding cites just so you can say "I still think smokers are crazy!" To your credit, you're trying to be scientific and logical about it, but underneath all of that is a conviction that smokers are doing the Wrong Thing. I'm afraid that's something I can't undo with a cite.

But anyone who continues to use nicotine with any degree of regularity will eventually develop a physical dependenc to it. That's a just a biological inevitability. There are not special people who are born with ability to regulatly use physically addictive substances with immunity.

Actually, there are LOTS of them. I bet you're one of them. Have you ever had coffee, tea, soda or beer?

We are left, then, with the occasional smoker; who claims they are not addicted. What, then, is their impetus for smoking, even only occasionally? Is it peer pressure?

[former-occasional-smoker-hat-on]

Often, yes--sort of. A lot of occasional or "social" smokers smoke when their friends are smoking because it's a group activity they want to take part in. You could call that peer pressure, although it's not the same as teenagers telling each other "Come on, man! Do it! You know you want to!"

But a lot of occasional smokers just like it. I, for one, love the taste and smell of clove cigarettes. That's why I used to smoke them--I liked them and I liked doing it. When I was around non-smokers I didn't do it, because I didn't need to. I never got "the jones". When I started my current relationship, my girlfriend was pretty concerned about the health effects of my smoking. Since it bothered her, and since I wasn't addicted, I quit: I set a deadline (New Year's) and just did it. I remember once--several weeks afterwards, long after the time when the last physical effects of withdrawal traditionally end--thinking "Man, I could really go for a smoke", but I shrugged it off and went on with my day. But I had no withdrawal. I missed giving up on a fun social activity that I used to like taking part in, but I never shook, rattled, rolled, got irritable, craved or did anything of the sort. You could call me an addict, but I'm pretty sure any addictionologist would tell you you were pretty far off the mark.

If not for addiction, why do something, with knowledge, that is so counterproductive to your well being?

Why do you eat candy or have sex? I suggest you give this article (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Addiction) a good read.

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