Smoking

Since posting this long article, I have stopped smoking, and switched to vaping. The ban on smoking in public places came in, and I still haven’t had a cigarette. I am reblogging this, as it has never received a ‘Like’ or comment, and has only been viewed a handful of times. Perhaps nobody wants to read about smoking anymore?

beetleypete

When I was very young, everyone I knew, with perhaps three exceptions, was a smoker. My Mum smoked, as did my Dad, my Grandparents, almost all of my Uncles and Aunts, and all the family friends. Smoking was normal. In the street, on the bus or train, in shops, cinemas, theatres, everyone seemed to be smoking. The only place I had never seen anyone smoke was in a church. If you visited someone in hospital, they had an ashtray next to their bed. Cigarettes were sold everywhere; in pubs, shops, railway stations, cafes, restaurants, and even from vending machines in the street. If you are under 40 years of age, you would find it hard to believe how acceptable it was to smoke. Furniture was even sold with built in ashtrays, in recesses in the arms. Cigarette boxes were coordinated with other ornaments, and every room would have a selection…

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40 thoughts on “Smoking

    1. The original post was in August 2012, Lloyd.
      I have posted other articles about vaping since, but not in the last few months.
      I may have put a link to that 2012 post in an answer to a comment though?
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I remember going to the corner shop for my neighbours 5 Park Drive, but no one smoked in my home. I really wanted to when I was at 6th form college, but failed miserably – thank god. I married a smoker and live with him 35 years and by the time I left I had asthma. Perhaps I should sue him! Well done for giving up 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Gilly. Five Park Drive was a very popular purchase, north of Watford at least. Well done for lasting 35 years with a smoker, when you didn’t smoke yourself. That second-hand smoke almost certainly caused your breathing problems.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Like

  2. Congrats on stopping smoking! I have seen friends really struggle to stop. Vaping comes across to me as still being as addictive as real cigarettes, but I understand what is being taken into the lungs is not as harmful. It’s the lesser of two evils I guess. I’ve never smoked and don’t see the attraction. My parents smoked for years but managed to give up.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are 100% correct, Maddy. Vaping is still complete nicotine addiction, no point in trying to say otherwise. However, it is not only 95% cheaper, it is also 95% less harmful. (According to Cancer UK, and the British Heart Foundation)
      The best option, for a such a hardened smoker as I was. And I make no other claim than that.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. This was a very interesting post Pete! Your writing is FANTASTIC! I have been a smoker for 14 years.😭😭 I vaped the last few and broke down with stress recently and been pucking up cigarettes again even though I have health concerns. I am very ashamed to be a smoker and wish I never started. I started at 15 heavy smoking because I was in a group home and in the system. In those places if you didn’t smoke you were just a pathetic wuss because we all did things to have somewhat of a freedom from the abuse and lives we lived. I guess in a way it was our way of being able to be a child and make reckless choices. I smoked occasionally from age 12 being in an abused girl’s home. There was just expectations, gang affiliation and we did anything to have a say so about our lives. We were all eating state issued food that kept is “calm” and were shoveled large amounts of medications for clinical trials and such. The staff would turn the other way while we smoked so they could smoke and that was our piece of freedom. This is not an excuse just the way it was. I still wish I was wiser about it and now with anxiety I still turn to the fix of nicotine even though I am in remission from liver cancer. But back to your post, I thought your writing was incredible! Have you ever considered writing a novel or something? Reading through your posts you always grab my attention and hold it! I thoroughly enjoyed the history in this post and knowing a little more about you! I can’t relate to all but can relate to some and you are on point about so much! Thanks for sharing Pete!😁💯💞

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for adding your own poignant story, Dani. Small wonder that you turned to cigarettes, and still need them now. One good thing about vaping is the ability to continue the nicotine addiction, without the associated dangers.
      You are very kind about my writing, and those words are much appreciated. Writing a book, whether memoir or novel, is very time-consuming and I think is best approached like a full-time job. I have written very long pieces on this blog, in the form of serials. If you ever think you would have time to read them, I will happily send you links. You can always email me at petejohnson50@yahoo.com as that might be too much for a blog comment.
      Best wishes as always, Pete. xx

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Quite the story, Pete. No one in my family smokes and I’ve never touched one myself, but I have smelled enough of it throughout my life to feel like I was smoking it (second-hand smocking..) I’ve grown to hate the smell, but I do find the transition that some peepz have done from cigz to vaping. I never really read it into all the pros and cons of it, but it does seem to be an improvement health wise.

    Like

    1. Thanks for reading and commenting, Lashaan. You are wise to never have smoked. The difference with Vaping is that there are no Tars, Carbon Monoxide, or inhaled hot burning tobacco smoke. Even The British Heart Foundation doctors have stated that it is more than 95% safer than using cigarettes. Of course, it’s better to use nothing at all. 🙂
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I had a matchbook collection as a kid since everywhere we went you could pick up a book of matches. I remember my Aunt smoking French cigarettes–Galoises?– and then Camels. She was the only adult I knew who chain smoked, lighting one from the previous one.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I once collected book matches to recall visits to places, as well as restaurants and bars. I don’t know where they are now, but I must have had over 100 at one time. Gauloises are a strong French cigarette, with a distinctive odour. Did your aunt escape the ravages of her chain-smoking, I wonder?
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. From “The Seven Year Itch” (1955):

    RICHARD SHERMAN: [In Richard’s nightmare, his wife, Helen, shoots him. He’s dying on the stairs.] Helen… I’m going fast. Give me a cigarette!

    HELEN SHERMAN: A cigarette? You know what Dr. Murphy told you about smoking!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Pete you’ve just reminded me, I can picture them now, years ago in every Public House you’d see half full ashtrays on the bar counter and tables. Kids today wouldn’t believe it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I miss that more than the cigarettes. I have a collection of ashtrays, packed away, and my beloved Zippo lighters, some given away, some kept as mementos. I never judge smokers, Cindy. If I had a bigger pension, an inheritance, or a lottery win, I am sure that I would never have given up. Only relative ‘poverty’ in retirement forced me to quit, due to the high taxation meaning that my brand cost £10 a packet now, and I simply cannot justify that expenditure.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Like

  8. I’m so glad you’ve switched to vaping Pete. I’ve never smoked myself, but both my parents were chain smokers. My dad died from cancer but it was a brain tumor so I’m not sure if smoking had anything to do with it. I moved out of my mother’s condo four years later. I was taking my clothes out of some dresser drawers about three weeks later when the overwhelming odor of cigarettes hit me. It was so strong I actually started choking. I wound up having to get everything dry cleaned! I still can’t believe that I had gotten that used to the smoke! I’ve often wondered if that’s why I had asthma.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Your asthma could certainly be the result of parental smoking, Kim. Although I managed to give up, those 45 years of heavy smoking have no doubt already done their damage. I may have undone some of that by giving up, and walking with Ollie, but I am sure that some aspect of it will eventually come back to haunt me medically.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

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