For the record, I do not have a problem with smokers. Many of my closest friends smoke. Admittedly, I don’t understand the appeal. I tried smoking three times in my life. One was a cigar I got from a friend back when it was still politically correct to give out cigars when their wife went through hours of labor to bring a new life into the world. It made me sick. The cigar, not the baby. Well, the baby did, too when it spit up on my new Polo shirt a few months later.
Another time I experimented with tobacco was a cigarette. I was stressed and knew people who said it help them relax. They must not inhale. It just made me cough and burned my lungs.
The very first time I smoked I was on fire at the time so I don’t think that counts. It was a freak campfire incident. Don’t ask.
That being said, I walked put of Panera the other day and started coughing because it’s Spring and pollen and I have a contentious relationship. I didn’t even notice the man smoking right by the door. He was in the mood for a fight so he started it.
“You non-smokers think you have the right to mock us with your fake coughs.”
After I restarted my heart because he scared me half to death, I looked around and saw a small, middle-aged man puffing away on an unfiltered Pall Mall. I considered explaining about allergies but two things stopped me. 1) I don’t battle wits with unarmed people. 2) He was smoking unfiltered cigarettes so I figured he didn’t have long to live anyway.
I smiled kindly as I approached. “I agree. You do have the right to smoke. Have a nice day.”
Then I released an Olympic gold medal fart and walked to my car. I don’t know whether his wheezing was from the cigarette or the methane I left behind. I’d like to think I had a little to do with it.