Don’t judge me cause I’m smokin’
My career as a smoker has done more for my hand-eye co-ordination than five years of PE classes ever managed
There’s a lot of judgement these days against your average smoker, and a lot more against a smoking fresher girl.
“Please tell me you’ve given up?”, they condescend, “you’re not still smoking are you?”
Well, actually I am, and I have good reason to be.
First of all, as a Cambridge student, I spend far too much time cooped up indoors, chained to my desk and mentally shackled to never-ending verb lists – I don’t get nearly enough fresh air. The prospect of a cigarette draws me outside with an appeal a brisk walk just can’t imitate. And once I’m outside I see so many things.
There’s a lot more going on outside the narrow confines of Imperial Rome than the non-smoking Classicist might realise. I’ve seen swans fighting, punts crashing, and I’ve seen the beautiful red-brick walls of Magdalene in an innumerable variety of weather conditions. It’s a series of views that your average non-smoking, ruddy-cheeked health fanatic simply cannot imagine, so habituated are they to staring at the sweaty back of the rower in front of them.
Secondly, my career as a smoker has done more for my hand-eye co-ordination than five years of PE classes ever managed. Being too cheap to smoke straights and, as a Classicist, being well-versed in the value of transferable skills, I have taken, slowly, to rolling.
Now, up until very recently I wouldn’t have admitted to this, so ashamed was I of my paper-manoeuvring. Last night however, pre-rolling to avoid embarrassment on my night out, I had a break through. A flick of the thumb, judicious use of the flat surface of my desk, and a recall of my primary school origami skills and voila! A tightly rolled cigarette was created.
And it’s that joyous moment that brings me on to my next point – there is nothing, nothing in this world that matches the sense of calm a firmly rolled cigarette imparts onto my frazzled neural passageways.
It’s a health thing, lads. We all get stressed, and if I choose to deal with it by inhaling nicotine next to the gorgeous river I am now sane enough NOT to throw myself into, what business is it of yours?
Alright passive smoking is a danger, but I don’t go puffing smoke into people’s faces. If there’s even the slightest hint that I’m being carcinogenic to anyone other than my masochistic self I either put my cigarette out, or move.
Am I really such a threat to your health? If you really care about the impact one’s environment has on one’s health surely there are bigger fish to fry? There’s smog in China, drought in California, and Sainsbury’s are selling chocolate biscuits for a pound, luring the legume-eating middle classes ever closer to obesity.
Fight one of those battles, and leave me and my cigarette alone.