I was going to say "shot the president," but I didn't feel the need to have the FBI busting down my door within minutes of posting this! Hmmmm...I wonder if they will since I said it in the body instead of the title.
Anywho, today, something interesting happened. And tho I have been seeing this whole bigotry happening for a LOOOONNGGG time now, it just really was shoved in my face today.
First, I am sick. Like I feel like hammered shit. I ache, sore throat, low grade temp, and I took my day off to sleep and self medicate. Now I can't sleep, and I still feel like shit, so blog here I am. Oops...off topic again.
Anyway, at some point, I decided to make a run to the store to get some of Sprite since none of my so called friends came by to check on me and make sure I wasn't one foot in the grave. For the record, I am not, thanks for asking! Anyway, I went to the store to get Sprite.
As I waited in line, I noticed that I was low on cigarettes and decided to stock up. Not that I was smoking much today cause my throat is sore and none of my friends came to check up on me. But I digress again. After waiting nearly 10 minutes with my 2 liter of overpriced soda behind the gramps who sorted through his retirement plan (aka, lottery ticket purchases) for which he paid in quarters and dimes, I finally made it to the counter. I placed my soda on the counter and placed my well rehearsed order for my cancer in a box.
Of course, they didn't have them out on display...they had to go dig for my brand as the shipment just came in. While I wait patiently, a very large woman (to quote Keiser....orca big) cleared her throat and proceeded to lecture me on the dangers of smoking. The conversation went something like this:
Shamu: You do know that those things will kill you, don't you?
I notice at this point that she is holding onto 3 convenient store hot dogs, large bag of chips, and diet cola in her hands, not to mention the king sized candy bar in her pocket. So I say in a very loud and praising voice...Me: Oh My Gosh! I had no idea!! Thank you, oh Thank you for saving my life!!!!
Then I rolled my eyes and turned awayShamu: I'm being serious! Smoking kills!
Me: And that extra 600 pounds you are carrying around on your waist, kneecaps, and cankles won't kill you?
Those of you that know me know that I speak my mind...especially when I am in a foul mood...
Shamu: There is no need to judge me!Me: That's the pot calling the kettle black!
Shamu: Excuse me!
At this point, she shifts her hefty weight onto one leg, and begins bobbing her head. I might also mention at this point that Shamu is "African American"
Me: Just mind your own fuchin business and leave me alone.
As I drove home thinking about Orca lady, I lit up, rolled down my window and turned on my music to relax. I am at a stop light, and the lady in the car next to me actually had the nerve to ask me to roll up my window because the smoke was making her sick. I nearly flicked my cigarette in her car...which, by the way, was loaded down with empty beer cans in the back seat and a case in the front seat - not that I am judging or anything.
I was fuming, but like usual, I swallowed my pride, ran the light, and went home to take more meds and sleep some more.
It all comes down to this...
First, it became illegal to smoke on federal or state property, including public schools, libraries, court houses, etc. Okay. I can deal with that.
Next, a sin tax is posed on cigarettes (along with other things that are considered socially amoral, even though they are practiced by pretty much everyone). Supposedly, the money that was garnered from the sin tax was suppose to go towards education, but keep in mind that teachers are being laid off left and right, so we know it didn't go where it was suppose to. Ugh - stay on topic, Dwayne.
Next, it became legal for private corporations and companies to ban smoking on their properties - this long after the federal and state owned properties became non-smoking. So now, my job included, I am not allowed to smoke...I have to cross the street. I can't even sit in my car and smoke.
THEN - cities and states decided that it is not okay to smoke in restaurants and bars...I am okay with restaurants, but in bars! Next they will be telling me that I can't even smoke in my own home!
So now, not only am I severely limited on where I can smoke, I pay out the ass to do so, and I get treated like I just stabbed a priest or held up a dead baby sign while doing so. And the RIGHT to smoke is still being chiseled away.
I am incensed because I make a choice to smoke. I like to smoke. I like the way that it relaxes me. I wish it didn't have the bad smell that comes with it, but to be honest, as a smoker, I like the smell! And I miss it when I don't smoke for a long period of time. The point is...ITS MY CHOICE! And by choice, I do NOT smoke in restaurants. I do not smoke in my own car when other people are in it with me. I do not smoke in non smoking areas. I do not smoke in other peoples home or cars. I DO smoke in bars because that is when I like to smoke the most-unless, of course, the bar is non-smoking. Then I just don't go there. I don't smoke at home all that often. I smoke at work when it gets stressful. My point is...I DO NOT push my smoking habit off on other people. So why, oh why, does society decide to push their NON-SMOKING off on me!
I realize that it is just a taboo thing to do, but some people make it out to be worse than farting in a crowded elevator or peeing in a public drinking fountain. If you don't want to smoke, then don't smoke. Your choice. I want to smoke. I accept the risk of my choice. I realize that it will kill me someday, but then again, if it doesn't then something else will. Just keep your damn mouth shut unless I am breaking the rules and smoking in a place where it is not allowed.
Before you start throwing stones (not just the individual - but society in general), take a look at some of the stuff that you do in your own home! How about I start pushing for lobbying against that? How about something that you enjoy doing (moral or amoral) becomes a social taboo just because someone else disagrees with it? I thought this was country of freedom? Remember, when you are pointing at someone, you are point four fingers right back at yourself.
Also remember this - if smoking is allowed, I am going to smoke. If you don't like it, move to a non-smoking area. Its my choice...I am not pushing it off on you...don't push your choice off on me. And for the record - OUTDOORS is a SMOKING AREA! If I am the required 50 feet away from the door of a building, then I am OUTDOORS and I WILL SMOKE. Don't walk into my cloud to tell me it is bothering you. Walk the other way.
I'm just saying. Ignore my rants...I'm sick and irritated. Tomorrow I will be better.
PS - I jest about my friends not checking in - mom texted, and several of my buddies did call and check up or made post...but for those of you who didn't = >raspberry on you!
Comments made on original post
Sarah Rivers · Northeastern State University
Dwayne, you are absolutely right. I personally choose not to smoke. I grew up with my parents who were heavy smokers and got asked one time (by Mr. Rose - the HS principal) if I smoked because I always smelled like it. I was so embarassed. That alone made me not want to. But we do live in a society where we are automatically judged by what we do. We could be the greatest, most kind, giving person in the world...but God forbid we have a habit that society deems wrong. That's instant grounds for execution. It is your right to choose to smoke just like it's my right to choose not to. My hats off to you Dwayne.
Roman A. Guerra · English Teacher JV Baseball coach at Edcouch-Elsa ISD
Very well said D. I agree with you that everyone wants to push their views on you though you clearly state you CHOOSE to smoke. You know I don't smoke, but I did have cancer. Yet, I still feel it is up to that person. I have nothing against you smoking, but like you said, just don't do it where you're not supposed to. Everyone else can S**K it! LOL ps the teacher stuff is awesome as well.
I am just going to start the campaign...I will vote Dwayne Isbell in 2012!
Oh how I love this! I am singing your praises to all that can hear.