In many states throughout the U.S., there are two questions asked by the wait staff upon entering a restaurant before the party is seated; “How many in your party?” and “Smoking or Non-Smoking Section?” The answers to these two questions determines both location within the establishment and the potential wait time before a table is available. However, in many states (such as Florida) the “Smoking or Non-Smoking” question is not asked thanks to a law passed a few years back known as the Florida Clean Indoor Air Act. The act banned smoking in public buildings such as libraries, indoor malls, airports, government facilities, and business buildings. It also bans smoking in restaurants that earn more than a certain percentage of total income from food sales (I believe this number sits between 30 and 40 percent, although I cannot confirm this with the official statutes at this time.) It’s been 10 years since the voter-passed amendment instituted this ban, and it’s been wonderful for me. But I got to thinking today, where else might a smoking ban be useful?
I grew up asthmatic, and as puberty kicked in that evolved to seasonal allergies. While this is both a blessing and a curse — pine pollen kicks my ass every year — one the lingering effects as an adult is that I am extremely sensitive to the smell of cigarette smoke. In an outdoor area I can smell a cigarette from 10 – 20 feet away, more if the wind is carrying it my way. Make that area enclosed, and I can usually smell it anywhere within a 50 foot radius. And smokers, let me just say, your habit reeks.
The Castle, which Mrs. AP and I love, is not a smoke free environment. We mitigate the effects by spending time on the back patio when we can and avoiding proximity to lit cigarettes as much a possible, but when we come home we have to immediately strip and get our clothes in the wash and then hop in the shower to get the smell of smoke off of us. The absolute worst thing is to skip the shower and wake up smelling smoke in each other’s hair.
If just being around other people’s smoke makes us smell bad, what does it do for the people actually inhaling through the end of that little stick of paper, nicotine, and various chemical byproducts? Sadly, I have some experience in this; twice I have had playtime with a smoker, and both times have led to the same conclusion. Smokers do not taste pleasant. Not to kiss, not to nibble, not to bite, and by all means not to taste bodily fluids. The phrase “you are what you eat” is very much applicable her, as both male and female tasted like, well… smoke. Because of this, Mrs. AP and I have a general Non-Smoking policy in place when it comes to potential partners or playmates.
This makes me wonder; how many other people don’t want to date / sleep with / play with a smoker? Surely Mrs. AP and I are not alone in this. Goodness, we’ve even both been known to cringe and back away when we see somebody attractive light up or take a drag. If we react that strongly toward others smoking, there must be others who react as we do. Is this a marketable demographic? Could we start a website or business that caters to smoke-free dating exclusively?
I feel like there’s opportunity here…
Stay SINful, friends.