May 7, 2006

Can You Tatoo A Pack Of Camels On My Back?

So, I am at the Safeway looking for Diet Cherry Coke on sale and of course they don't have any. As I trudge back to my car I see a group of kids milling around a car with some beer and a Styrofoam cooler. Since it is Saturday I assume they are headed to a party. Another kid carrying a lot more beer shouts and all the kids, except one young woman, rush off to help him. I notice that she is an attractive young thing, in a grunge sort of way, and that she is smoking a cigarette. This gets me to thinking what I always think about young women and smoking or young women and tattoos for that matter: This will have bad consequences when they are old. I mean who wants to see an 80 year-old woman with a saggy tattoo? Does she really think that tattooed jungle covering her back will improve with age? Does this life-filled young thing want to wind up dragging an oxygen tank around and being a pain in the butt for whoever is burdened with her when she cannot go it alone? Does she really want to be a seventy-year-old who sounds like she could sing bass in a gospel quartet? But she's not thinking about that today, I am. See I don't get it. People spend a lot of money to look good. They buy nice clothes, they get their hair done at expensive places, they drive fancy cars and go to the gym and then they PISS IT AWAY BY SMOKING. My girl here is not different. She has this careless look about her but even a momentary glance reveals that it is carefully cultivated and at some cost. I was on my way to Home Depot and I was passed by two women in a Ford Expedition. It was apparent that these two either had money or wanted the world to think that they did. The driver had this giant mane that was a color that doesn't appear in nature. She obviously spent some serious dough to get it. They both were puffing away, with the windows cracked slightly in an apparent attempt to let out the fumes and smoke, and yet not muss the hair. What's the point? Do they seriously believe that cracking the window slightly accomplishes anything? My favorite part of the scene was the bumper sticker on the rear of the car that said "Building Better Minds at Johnson Middle School". Yes kids take life advice from these two. I don't care how good you look, if you smoke you will smell like a pig, your clothes will stink, your car will stinks, your breath, kids and even pets will stink. Here's a little secret: We nonsmokers find every aspect of your habit disgusting. Whether it is the stench, the cloud you emit or even the butt cans we are forced to look at outside our doorways. It revolts us, no offense intended. Plastic surgeons will tell you about something called smokers mask. I don't know why it happens but a middle-aged smoker generally looks like, well, a middle-aged smoker. You can spot them a mile away. They have rings around the eyes, crows feet, this pursed lip thing and a funny color. So you see it doesn't matter what else you do to beautify yourself, at 50 you will look like hell. No offense. Here is another thing that bugs me. These lifelong smokers expect to be given handicapped parking spots as a reward for their stupidity. It just frosts me to see some gasping old fool dragging an oxygen tank out of his car parked directly in front of a business. Seven times out of ten the moron is still smoking. The argument is made that these folks got hooked on smokes before it was widely known that smoking kills you. When was that again, 1803? We have had warnings on cigarette packs for FORTY YEARS! Your excuse has expired, will you be next? "Smith, party of two, your table is ready in the eternal smoking section." I was in a recreational bowling league and there was this woman who bowled in the league. She appeared to me to be about 60. Her husband was this old man, with his own oxygen setup. He gasps for every breath. I would see the two of them every week, unloading right in front of the building, and struggling to get him and their gear inside. Emphysema had gotten the best of him. She looked okay from a distance but up close appeared to be in the early stages of emphysema. She did that little tooth-sucking breathing thing that people with emphysema do. The thing is that after these two staggered in and got situated, he would take off the plastic breathing tube and they would both light up. These two are braindead. She could see what it had done to him but she kept on. Is it any wonder that smokers most often are married to smokers. No one else could bear it. So here's my thought. Want to smoke go ahead. Stink up yourself, ruin your health, mortgage your financial future by paying $5 a pack, die early, endanger your kids, I don't really care what happens to you. But stop asking me to accommodate your addiction. Don't demand smoking areas or sections. You have a smoking section: It is called YOUR HOUSE. Keep it there. Don't ask me to pony up for your medical care, just keep paying that cigarette tax so the government lays off me. Lastly, why should your stupidity entitle you to the good parking? Handicapped parking should be strictly reserved for those who didn't bring it on themselves. The self destructive can just find 'em where the rest of us do. When I am king doctors will not have the power to write letters to get primo parking for morons, I will . I'll be reviewing applications over in the nonsmoking section.

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