Friday, September 5

No Smoking

I've been talking a lot about this new health directive from October 2 with a feeling of impending doom. My faith in my country has been certifiably smashed to bits. Why aren't there any mass protests over this? Is India really made up of so many non - smokers that no one really gives a damn. Or maybe everyone thinks that this will sink in too like the numerous other rulings. But this wouldn't. This is going to become like how Mumbai cops have so diligently decided to bring every case of drunken driving to book. That makes sense. Blowing smoke in the air and harming others (apparently) is a lot less scandalous than being a bad driver and then heightening your chances of killing people by downing some.
I remember how the clinical feel of Singapore drove me up the wall. And then stupid Dubai. Never would have thought that ANY government would achieve the unbelievable feat of instituting a ban on public smoking in an Arab country. But they did. I think it's all a case of talking too much about a good thing. Never would this happen in India. We respect our people and their brains. Fine, you cannot smoke at airports and railway stations. But this is revolting. Imagine going to Blues, my growing up drinking haunt, and now some cute waiter is going to tell me not to smoke there. Imagine having a great dinner and then you can't light up there. There will be nothing as a smoking section. If I go to yet another cramped club because some commercial friends of mine force me to, I won't be able to chain smoke to ward off my boredom, or frustration or whatever. Now when I meet some new group of people in a new place, I wouldn't be able to smoke to keep myself from feeling awkward. Fuck. Where is the love. And about it being harmful, of course it is. So is alcohol. And a dozen other things. This hypocrisy doesn't sit too well with me. I had a lot of stuff on how smoking (marijuana) is actually less harmful than drinking alcohol, but um, it's not there on this computer and I should really study for my placements. Also, India is such a wonderful country where women are still not allowed to smoke a cigarette in peace without being given the oh god you're an immoral bitch stare. Wonder how much I'll step out on the street to smoke one. I'm so disappointed. I thought we were free. To harm ourselves in whatever way we want.


Electric Shaman said...

Don't worry your head too much about it. Ban on public smoking in India will NEVER get enforced or taken seriously. Do you know how many cops smoke! Or how much taxation revenue our government makes from cigarette sales? Remember that stupid directive the Censor Board or the Ministry of IB tried to ban all movies that showed people smoking and what happened to that??

So relax, go to your favorite bar (although I hope its not cramped because its soo teenager to do that!) and light up. The sweet taste of freedom you will always get in India and never again in fucking New York.

clemenza said...

October 2nd onwards, cities in Indian turn the European way.

It will be a heartening sight to see people crowd outside pub's rather than the insides just like dublin or any other European city.

However, I still support the ban on smoking.

Smoking ciggs is harmful, quit smoking ciggs.

lostlittlegirl said...

It will be a heartening sight to see people crowd outside pub's rather than the insides just like dublin or any other European city.

Is this your opinion or some newspaper advert? How cool is that. I don't think India needs to ape Europe to feel good. It's definitely not heartening to see that shit

bobo said...

the thing about the ban is that noone can (or rather, should) dispute that smoking is not good for your health, but at the same time, as you've pointed out, it's unfair to pick only on cigs as a 'vice' - stimulants start from coffee, and if you're going to go pure it's a question of where to draw the line.

the main problem with the ban is the manner in which it's been done - a complete total ban could be defended on the health issue more thoroughly than this indoor-outdoor ban. there's no rational nexus between health and banning smoking indoors.

if you're going to make an argument for second-hand smoke, that is true, but you're just as likely to have someone blow a puff into your face when walking on the pavement than when in a confined place (that you've consented to being in implicitly).

and the second-hand smoke argument itself is a bad one, for you're more likely to die sooner by being run over by a driver under the influence than due to lung cancer developed due to s-h smoke.

also, and this is a tenuous argument i admit, smoking indoors in places used to it is less dangerous because of the presence of ashtrays etc. in the open, on the other hand, the errant lit butt is always only so far away from a pile of trash or leaves or whatever.

is Ramadoss also implying that it's ok, or rather, preferable to smoke in a park/wooded open area than in a bar?


clemenza said...


Its my opinion. Not some newspaper article
As an ex cigg smoker who used to be sitting outside pubs to smoke, i think its gonna be a heartening sight.
I can wait to see something like that happening outside Purple Haze [bangalore].

As i said, quit smoking ciggs there are better things that can be smoked ;-)

lostlittlegirl said...

bobo: respect man. As far as I remember, you don't even smoke! Actually the only logic behind this indoor-outdoor ban is that Europe seems to find sense in it. Apparently they know better. I guess again people are going to look for places adventurous enough to take chances with this rule. Hell, whole of Gujarat drinks a lot. These things gladden my heart. I'm not interested in living in some fruity convention following country that pays no need to common sense.

Clemenza: Man what' with that argument. You can't just smoke upm and not smoke cigarettes. That's just the dumbest thing people can come up with. Yes, its healthier. But it's also illegal. Why would you want people to be inconvenienced? How would you feel if I tell you to take your beer outside?

Surly Girl In The Corner said...

Everyone gets used to it. When it happened here two years ago I nearly cried. I think it is heart cockle warming to see clusters of smokers multiplying (just like those pesky cancer cells) outside pubs and restaurants, huddling together, borrowing lighters, bitching about the council, sharing personal stories, connecting, loving, forming a COMMUNITY. Sucks that you can't use your fag to accidentally burn people though.

lostlittlegirl said...

surly girl: lol. yeah I guess we'll get used to it. Am quite clear about 'accidentally' burning the establishment and health freaks. Half the world still needs to get the idea of pro choice.

bobo said...

heh, yeah, i don't. :)

i also believe firmly in the theory of second hand smoke attraction - no matter in which direction smoke is blown (and no matter which direction the wind/fans blow), the smoke shall always re-route itself so as to find the nostrils of the non-smoker. :P

clemenza said...


As I said, ciggs are bad, I mean very bad. Pot is pretty safe.

As for drinking beer outside, that is what is gonna happen. You will see people standing outside pubs and drink.

The ban is gonna be a huge inconvinence, however we will have to live with it.