Lately, it seems like the people in the Lower Haight should get a special stipend from the city from all of the cigarette butt taxes. The stipend would cover all of the secondhand smoke and carbon monoxide that people in the area inhale from locals sidewalk smokers. Although I know of three people that have gotten a ticket for smoking a cigarette where they should not, it still seems a bit out of hand outside.
I know that I’m being hypocritical as a smoker, but I have seen some very bad etiquette from fellow sidewalk smokers in the Lower Haight. I grew up on a tobacco farm in Kentucky and a lot of people smoke there. However, we are all very much aware in Kentucky that smoking around someone else when they don’t like it is rude. This applies everywhere including designated smokers areas. We feel, in Kentucky, that smokers have the “right of way”.
Today, I’m in a café in the Lower Haight. After seeing all these naughty smokers outside, I’m not surprised to hear everyone at this café talking about the trend in the area for the new FDA Warnings on cigarette smoking. I knew it was only a matter of time before the dirty smokers in the area got the rest of us in trouble.
I suggest that cigarette smokers in the Lower Haight try a new outdoor smoking strategy. Instead of standing next to a wall, try standing between cars parked on the street or around the corner in order to clear the sidewalk of cigarette smoke.
Also, don’t talk on cell phones or text when you are smoking in order to make yourself more aware. I would also suggest quickly putting out your cigarette if you noticed someone on a respirator approaching. I also tend to put my cigarette out if I notice someone covering their mouth and nose as they anticipate approaching me with my blazing cancer stick.
After all, I’m a dirty addict, but I don’t have to take out the rest of the world in my hourly suicide attempt. Hopefully, when the guillotine of FDA Warnings on cigarette smoke come my way, they will at least allow me to have one last satisfying puff, in the street, away from all non-smokers.