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Smoking gets into your eyes

Updated on April 11, 2015

The smoke filtered in the editorial room. I was sitting behind the computer, getting sniffs of air-consuming tobacco. This had been going on all morning, reporters and editors going out to have a puff. I suddenly couldn't hold myself any longer, went out of the room took a cigarette from whoever happened to be standing, lit it and inhaled.

"But you don't smoke," one asked in amazement.

"I do now, the smell is refreshing, the tobacco revitalizes your body," I replied.

I continue to fondly remember this episode, although it was not the first, certainly didn't get me on the road to smoking, because I started experimenting long before that, in fact at the age of 14 and 15.

It was considered the fad to have a cigarette between your fingers and to be puffing and inhaling like a demented yo-yo with your neck stretching out, and your eyes pronouncing as you attempt to inhale.

The game was soon up especially if you start coughing as the nicotine hits the back of your mouth. Little did we know the damage we were doing to ourselves. It was acceptable, a means to filter into the grown up world, and watch –rated blue movies. We were in too much of a hurry to be 18.

People thought of smoking as social. There was a negative health aspect to it, but this was downplayed because of the emerging popular culture that has been built up in the 1950s and 1960s which stressed enjoyment and good time.

Smoking, cigarettes, puffing on the ads and billboards was abounding across the western world. It was fashionable and trendy; you were a bigger man, a tougher hunk if you smoked certain brands.

And there was little old me stuck in between the flashes and bright lights of a society that was going places, you had to be on board the boat, otherwise it will sail without you.

I remember one teacher actually telling us that some women and men I dare say, started smoking at an early age and can't give it up now because they've gotten used to having something in their hands and between their fingers.

When I look back now on those years I think the teacher should have stressed the ruinous health aspects of smoking, and the fact each cigarette takes some minutes from your life. I think my wife said its 11 minutes, but you might have to check. And please don't ask how the calculations were made, leave it to the experts.

But it's always wiser after the event. Today we have a lot more scientific research at hand, we know for instance of the direct causal link between smoking and cancer, there is, I think, less advertising and more health warnings on each pack of cigarettes.

This maybe of course be happening to the dismay of multinational cigarette companies, but its tough. And anyway maybe the companies already knows it won't make a blind bit of difference to people who want to smoke, and to youngsters who want that first drag.

States and politicians may cynically feel good about themselves for instituting legislations, but these mean they are not there to prohibit and deter but provide guidelines, putting the onus on a beguiled public.

There is too much at stake: Economy, business, employment, money-making. Tobacco is here to stay, its human nature, its freedom.

I occasionally still have the puff, so does my 17-year-old son against my advice, what a pity, what a world, one filled with contradictions and paradoxes.


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    • Ranzi profile image

      Cut The Bullshit 6 years ago from All Over

      Another nice read Marwan. Tobacco companies are killers and people that smoke are their accomplices forcing the innocent to passively smoke. I was in Beirut last week and although it's a beautiful city, I couldn't wait to get out of there, as people smoke everywhere. Malls, airports, restaurants, pubs and bars. I woke up the next day with a massive headache, almost vomiting. Even my dentist was smoking in his clinic before he began to work on my teeth.

    • profile image

      naturalsolutions 6 years ago

      In a smoker, I do believe that cigarette revitalize their body. It is an addiction but I think smoke is one of their way in refreshing their body.

      Nice hub, very helpful.

    • marwan asmar profile image

      Marwan Asmar 6 years ago from Amman, Jordan

      I appreciated, and it would be nice to keep the exchange going from time to time, thanks again

    • Nellieanna profile image

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      Perhaps I will! If so, I'll give you due credit for prompting it!

    • marwan asmar profile image

      Marwan Asmar 6 years ago from Amman, Jordan

      Please do publish it will be nice to read!

    • Nellieanna profile image

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      Thank you for a good article, - with which I agree whole-heartedly. I must add, though, that the big smoking surge started long before the 50s and 60s. It was a huge thing in the 1920s, 30s, and 40s!

      I just wrote a lengthy reply that turned out to be more of a hub of its own, so I'll spare you and your readers! In it, I confessed to trying a cigarette at age 12, but it's been 67 years since then with not even a slight interest in repeating it; - healthy years, I might add!

      The story of how it happened at age 12 is rather interesting, though. If I do publish it as a hub, you'll know. ; [)

    • hafeezrm profile image

      hafeezrm 6 years ago from Pakistan

      I do not smoke but I do not mind someone smoking before me. Once in a hotel, I was told that they have left with only one room which is for smokers. I said no problem and picked up the key. I could not stay for more than five minutes inside the room and asked them to cancel my reservation unless they can provide me with a non-smoking room.

      Normally, I would have tolerated but it seemed that there were a few smoking rooms taking all the pressure. The hotel provided me with a better room, of course charging me a much higher room rent for upgradation.

      You are right. Despite ban, awareness, warning, the use of tobacco would continue and may increase due to population growth.

    • LorenAyBe profile image

      LorenAyBe 6 years ago from Belgium

      It such a pity that some much people continue smoking knowing that is so bad. Perhaps the fact that is bad attracts people to try it and just never can leave it. Interesting hub!