What do you do when a bizarre situation is dropped in your lap by surprise?
Recently at a gas station a sour-looking, senior citizen woman standing at the next pump lit a cigarette! I said, "Uh, excuse me, gas pump, cigarette . . ."; she said, "I got it." I said, "No, I don't think you do -", she gave me a dirty look and cut me off with, "Yes, I do." Luckily her son (or whoever was with her in the car) at that point escorted her away from the pump, but if he hadn't, what would I have done? Does this sort of thing float around in your head for days afterward?
Step back, think about it, then approach the situation differently. I would have just said no smoking, taken it away from her and get it away from the pump. At least her son watches out for her, when he can. Yes, it constantly irritates my mind for a few days, maybe the week.
I had to laugh when I read this. Join the club. Seems like smokers are either the most ignorant or the most stupid people on earth. I had a similar smoker related incidence last week which left us fuming for days. We were vacationing at an american condo complex for 2 weeks where smoking is only allowed in assigned spots, far away from the buildings. Of course we ended up having a chain smoker as our downstairs neighbor and he smoked non-stop, 24 hour a day. We even woke up at 2 am thinking that we were sleeping in an ashtray, gasping for air. The funny thing was, that he went to the smokers spot a couple of times a day to demonstrate that he was supposedly obedient. He would stand there for no longer than 20 seconds, take a couple of puffs and put out his cigarette, only to return to his condo and carry on smoking inside. After putting up with his smoke for a week we had enough of this and reported him to management, after which the smoking stopped for approx. 1 day. Already on day 2, he was actually bold enough to smoke on his balcony. So I went down and politely told him: "We would appreciate if you didn't smoke. You know, Smoking is prohibited here". He gave me a dirty look and said: "Oh, really?????". Needless to say that he happily carried on smoking ever after and we just put up with it as we didn't want to get into a fight. In the end we were happy to leave. So much for our Hawaiian holiday! The problem is that smokers are selfish people and they think that anybody asking them to refrain from smoking in public is an intolerant jackass. It's not the smokers problem, it's the nonsmokers problem. Your incidence was definitely scary and probably you prevented a major explosion. You definitely did the right thing. The question remains: Why are smokers still so ignorant? Everybody knows that smoking is bad for your health but obviously smokers are unaware that it also makes them dumb!
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