The Smoking Car

Well, there was a car where smoking was allowed and sitting in a train car with a cigar as the world speeds by is living life to its fullest…  I had my golf clubs with me on both trips so many cigars were smoked on courses around Canada but riding on a train and smelling cigar smoke in the air brings you to eras of train travel from the past.

Anonymous, from “A Cigar on the Train”, https://www.montecristocubancigar.com/a-cigar-on-the-train/

If you’re old enough to remember when smoking was allowed on planes, then you may understand why I still, to this day, love to sit in the rear of airplanes.

The back was special. It was a kind of rogues gallery – or, in the mind of this young kid – the most interesting people on the plane. The smoking, the drinking, the laughing, the conversation – it was utterly unlike air travel today. It was damn near a party.

Even the people in the front were livelier than they are now. Admittedly, there were FEWER people on the planes. The economy seats were still human-sized, and there were generally only two of them on each side of the aisle. People FELT like they were owed some respect – and they GOT IT.

The stewardesses – because they were all “Bond girl” women back then – loved to hang out in the back and match wits with the liquored-up men, all the while keeping an eye on them, and talking them out of that next drink. To these women – every one of them tall, young, athletic, beautiful, and socially skilled – a cigarette-smoking college kid like me was a break – one that needed no executive baby-sitting. Being treated nicely was a great thing, even if it felt a bit like the “kid brother” treatment.

Turning around in one’s seat to talk to people was a thing. So was enjoying the people in FRONT talking over you to the people in BACK.

I once mentioned how I got into a long discussion of my academic future with some random guy next to me. Well – THE SMOKING SECTION is exactly why these sorts of things happened.

Smoking as an accepted part of society was a kind of mutual pardoning of incivility. It’s no accident that it’s gone.

It’s only a memory now. First to go were pipes and cigars. Then, more restrictions on WHEN one could smoke cigarettes. Then, the emergence of non-smoking “short flights”.

Eventually, the ash trays were only used for gum wrappers and can tabs. Smoking was gone. Some years later, I quit, too.

A year or two before I retired, I found myself wandering into the smoking area at work. I had never been there, because I quit smoking before there was even such a thing as a smoking area.

Located outside, hidden from visitors in a little architectural garden between buildings, I suddenly noticed that the setting was actually quite beautiful. It was a modernized version of a zen garden. The people, too, were wonderful – extremely pleasant and talkative – humorous. They never seemed that way when I walked by.

How could this be? How could my perception be so far off? For YEARS, I had walked past the smokers, thinking they were social defectives – minor addicts – in some sad little prison, not even able to converse with each other – strangers in an outdoor holding cell. But when I joined them, that day, it suddenly seemed like THEY were the privileged ones, and WE were the imprisoned drones, shuffling by – busy, busy, busy – in our psychological Mao jackets.

It was as if they had lucked into something BIG – some big secret that I needed to tell the world, except I didn’t know HOW.

Until today.



It’s not smoking. It’s all the stuff that went WITH IT. This is why the idea of retroculture is so appealing – even (secretly) to the liberals who “bring in the change” which destroys the old culture.

Emerald Robinson has a great quote which derives from a more obscure essay.

“Politics is downstream of culture, and culture is downstream of religion.”

Emerald Robinson’s Twitter tagline

The apparent irony that incivility was more tolerated in our society when we were more religious goes along with the paradoxical nature of the whole endeavor of the Judaeo-Christian God. Sometimes that is more easily seen from the uncivil side, and hence my valuing – to careful extents – of that perspective.

I remember as a child, the classic gospel song “This Train“, a.k.a. “Dis Train” or “This Train Is Bound For Glory”. We actually SANG THIS SONG IN SCHOOL.

Yes. There was a short version for kids, and we sang it. Standing next to our desks and singing was a regular school activity.

Here is a GREAT version of it, much more modern. You can see why it’s so appealing.

There are many versions of the song, and the lyrics are all over the place.

Here is one of the early versions, which I am quoting in particular, because it preserves the refrain about “jokers” and “smokers” – which was present in the version WE KIDS SANG.

This train is a clean train, you know, this train
This train is a clean train, I said, this train
This train is a clean train, everybody riding in Jesus’ name
This train is a clean train, I said, this train

This train has left the station, you know, this train
This train has left the station, I said, this train
This train has left the station and this train takes on every nation
‘Cause this train is a clean train, I said, this train

It’s the prettiest train I ever have seen, this train
It’s the prettiest train I ever have seen, oh, this train
It’s the prettiest train I ever have seen
But if you want to ride it, you better get redeemed
‘Cause this train is a clean train, I said, this train

Hey, this train is bound for glory, this train
This train is bound for glory, I said, this train
Hey, this train is bound for glory, everybody riding her must be holy
‘Cause this train is a clean train, I said, this train

Hey, this train don’t pull no jokers, I said, this train
This train don’t pull no jokers, ah, ah, this train
Hey, this train don’t pull no jokers
No tobacco chewers and no cigar smokers
‘Cause this train is a clean train, I said, this train

This train is a clean train, I said, this train
This train is a clean train, I said, this train
This train is a clean train, everybody’s riding in Jesus’ name
‘Cause this train is a clean train, I said, this train
Hey, this train is a clean train, I said, this train

Sister Rosetta Tharpe, “This Train”

The version we sang, which I still remember, contained this refrain:

This train, don’t carry no jokers, this train
This train, don’t carry no jokers, this train
This train, don’t carry no jokers
Ain’t gonna carry no cigar smokers
This train, don’t carry no jokers, this train

That version is actually very close to the Woody Guthrie version.

To me, there was always something that bothered me about these lyrics. It seemed to imply that there was no laughter in heaven – or at least, there would not be any, if “jokers need not apply”. Yes, it was just a childish view of things, but still – there seemed to be something wrong here.

I liked jokes. I liked the smell of cigar smoke. All sorts of good people smoked, and almost everybody joked. Were these things wrong? And even if these were a kind of “permissible sin” here on Earth, they appeared to be something “good” that would be shed once we left. That is, if the song was RIGHT.

I had a thought back then, which I could not quite articulate until now, but which I’m sure made every communist of the early 1960’s smile.

What a way to lose an audience!

And yet, the catchy lyrics and the joyful song were infectious. The whole thing seemed incongruous. I LIKED a song that indicted us for something that didn’t seem particularly bad. But part of LIKING IT was a kind of “necessary scoff” at the “Bible thumpers” who must have written the song. I can remember bringing my delinquent friends to uproarious laughter by singing those very lyrics during illicit smoking breaks during high school.

As we “thanked God” we were not on “That Train”.

There are times that I think that crypto-communist folk-singer Woody Guthrie chose this song VERY deliberately, because of that subtext.

“Let’s have a good old progressive time and re-position our minds PAST this funny old gospel song! It’s a great song if you don’t take it seriously!”

Allow me to quote from Nolte at Breitbart:

Many Woody Guthrie defenders point out that their hero was never a “card-carrying” member of the communist party, that he never officially signed on. While this is true, he did perform at communist party rallies, he did write for the Daily Worker, and he believed communism was the only answer.

John Nolte, Breitbart News

So – was “jokers and smokers” a mistake?

I don’t know. I quit smoking, and I cleaned up my joking.

But yet, there is a part of me that STILL wants to smoke, joke, and go back in time to the smoking section on the airplane.

Better yet, back before I met that guy who sat next to me. The fellow smoker who thought that “moving on up” by going to Deep State University was a good idea.

I sometimes think that the resolution of the paradox of “This Train” goes something like this.

Maybe we are ALL in the smoking car right now.

Maybe jokes are really a way of putting up with the PAIN of this reality – a kind of relief of the tension of our endurance. It’s not that in heaven, jokes aren’t ALLOWED. It’s that they’re not NEEDED. We no longer have to SETTLE for jokes. There is something MORE.

Well – great. So what is it – this “more” which God offers?

Who knows? Maybe it’s EVEN BETTER THAN SMOKING!

I just ain’t so sure it’s better than girls!

U

103 thoughts on “The Smoking Car

  1. No bell here yet. Looks like I will still have to do work on cookies because I will still have to re-log into WP for every comment.

    However, I have to make the following comment.

    It was a very cold day then end of September, and my HS class had our 40th reunion.
    A bunch of us smokers were outside smoking, laughing, talking, reminiscing. Out comes some non- smokers who joined in. Along came another who exclaimed that we were a hell of a lot more fun than the staid old non=smokers inside, and he’d rather freeze than go back inside. LOL. Yep, we were a LOT more fun that night. That was 16 years ago. Unfortunately he died before our 50th reunion. The smoking crowd was still going strong atour 50th reunion.

    My conclusion is have fun, don’t listen to the doomsayers, you’ll love longer.

    p.s. I just clicked on the “comment on WP icon and hee I am.

    Liked by 11 people

    1. However, now I see the bell doesn’t work here at U. The little circular search thingy just goes round and round forever. Oh well, better that than not having it at anyword press sites. I think that comments from here will still show up at Merica and Wolfie’s wqth sites, so I can then answer.

      Liked by 6 people

      1. This means that you have your login to WordPress working, presumably though the browser, but you still need the WP cookies that allow you to get notifications. It always spins until I “enable all cookies”.
        Whenever I “Allow all cookies” on the site, then it stops spinning and shows notifications immediately.

        Liked by 6 people

        1. Will look for the cookie message. That will be eaasier for me. Our #2 son has everything sewn up so tight on our electronics…we are even using Signal.

          Liked by 2 people

            1. Not really. I know it is IOS 10. I checked in privacy and find nothing at all related to cookies. Can’t even find the ad blocker.

              #2 son is coming in this weekend and is supposed to set us up with our new pc and teach me linex. He’s putting that and windows on it. If he has enough time I will ask him to work on the iPad also. Thanks Wolfie.

              Liked by 2 people

              1. I’m a real dunce here. I’m on an IOS 12, not 10. Today became a recipient of an IOS 12 Mini also. New PC is being set up by our youngest, sleep deprived father of newest baby, so PC is not ready to go yet. I will just putz along here until we are completely set up…

                Liked by 1 person

              1. I touched the three little dots in the right lower corner…thought I tried it at U, but no worky. Will try stuff again tomorrow. Nighty night.

                Liked by 1 person

        1. Honey,

          I’ve been called a ‘space cadet’ ……………………………. just ignore.

          I think you’re just fine, except for the “plain” … don’t see anything “plain” about you!

          Liked by 6 people

              1. Our daughter phoned us many times as her kids became teenagers, to apologize for stuff she did that her kids were now doing. Cracked us all up.

                Liked by 2 people

              2. Right ! My daughter told me when she was in her 20s that she knew she would get ‘karma’ from her kids when they got to be teenagers.

                I remember being a brat when I was a teen !

                Liked by 2 people

              3. Our daughter could start a riot in grade school but the teachers didn’t even realize things she did to EXcite the kids around her, so she never got in trouble. She’s the kid who could play in a mid puddle and come out pristine. LOL. But, at home, I knew how she got her brothers in trouble. She didn’t get away with her stuff at home. Our granddaughter got her older brother in trouble all the time. However, daughter and siblings and grandson and granddaughter would pound the stuffing out of anyone who crossed the other. Hee,hee,hee.

                Liked by 1 person

  2. As me and some “Smoking” buddies were freezing our asses off outside one day…..

    Some “Holier than Thou” type came up and commented on our smoking…….
    I replied: “You know what?”
    No… what?
    “My grandpa lived to be 100 years old and…..”
    Holier butts in: “I know I know…. He smoked his entire life…. right?”
    My Reply: “NO….He just minded his OWN DAMN BUSINESS!”

    Holier walked away 🙂

    Liked by 16 people

  3. Ahh…want cigar smoke, free flowing libations, and one heck of a good time? March 17 in Dogtown, St. Louis, Missouri. Bring your kilt and your bagpipes and be ready to jig. Nobody there is going to judge. (Honestly, the cigar smoke hangs in the air.)

    Liked by 8 people

    1. I’m thinking I want to party on St. Paddy’s Day in St. Louis with a cigar-smoking opera singer who dances jigs and sips Glenfiddich with a Black-and-Tan side. Anybody know someone that meets that description? It’s a very tight Venn Diagram.

      Liked by 6 people

      1. Give me Jameson or give me death. Every bar in Dogtown sets up at dawn, but I always bring a flask. We park ourselves on the hill at St. James the Greater, and just revel in being Irish for the day. Ancient Order of Hibernians Parade. Oh, and three long honks from any vehicle be it a fire truck, police car, Corvette, doesn’t matter, is to be answered with “LET’S GO BLUES” at the top of your lungs.

        Liked by 5 people

            1. I was referring to your life in general… rich in experience, in faith, in loyalty to family, country… you know what I’m sayin’ … 😉

              Now, I’ll have to say I’m with Tomas on the black-and-tan …

              Liked by 4 people

              1. Hey, the bars have that, too. I mean walk up Tamm Avenue, and it’s one curbside service after another.

                As for life…it’s what you make of it. I may not have much of a social life, but that doesn’t mean I don’t have fun.

                Liked by 5 people

              1. Mine. Go back a few generations in the Acadian GenBank and I’m sure we’re related. Although, I think the spelling of a great-great-great greadmother’s name was Marchand. Maybe not. It’s been a while since I’ve looked at that stuff.

                I swear every one of the families is represented somewhere in my family’s line. The guy who does the project gave us the research. I don’t want to say too much more, though, on an open forum.

                Liked by 1 person

        1. I noticed something at the store the other day that amused the heck out of me.

          A couple of years ago, it was a big thing to have craft beers (especially IPAs) that had been aged in used whiskey barrels. About a week ago, at my local supermarket, I saw Jameson’s that had been aged in used IPA barrels.

          Liked by 1 person

  4. My “Uncle Bob with the Big Cigar” was my father’s oldest brother. He was 21 in 1921 when my father was born. He was the CEO of the Chesapeake and Ohio RR, married a beauty queen from West Virginia, lived in Columbus, Ohio, swilled Dr. Pepper and scotch and always had a cigar in his right cheek – lit or unlit. He was my surrogate grandfather and was viewed with a certain amount of skepticism by my dour, disapprove-of-everything, Irish-Catholic mother.

    He died of throat cancer – as did so many cigar smokers in that time. He was also never stopped smoking his cigars, except for a brief time after his cancer surgery.

    Shortly before he died, he prevailed upon my mother (my father had very little to say about anything outside of his quest to vindicate the Irish-Catholics in the Byzantine, Wasp-dominated Boston legal world) to take me to an afternoon Red Sox game. The kicker was that we would “take the train” to and from the game. I have no memory of the game itself other than we sat along the first-base line in the slanting, late September afternoon sun, ate shell peanuts and hot dogs while he smoked his cigar, and he chatted up surrounding fans – who were also smoking.

    Baseball and Fenway were the evocative setting and the vivid backdrop but the real events took place around me (I was a doe-eyed observer except when invited into the conversation). Here was a former CEO of a legendary railway – The Chessie – discussing baseball, politics, football and everything else with a random group of men – all of whom he would never see again. Yet they chatted, laughed, shared stories and puffed on tobacco as they drifted in and out of the discussions

    The train rides, however, are the enduring memory for me. We met Uncle Bob at the Rte 128 station, which still is located at an exit interchange on the first interstate loop around Boston. We took what was then the “high speed” commuter train called the Budliner. The train itself was nondescript but you were allowed to wander around while it was moving and Uncle Bob could smoke because we were in “The Smoker”. Of course he made sure the trains we took in and out of the city had “Smokers.”

    Uncle Bob ALWAYS wore a vest with whatever else he was wearing and always carried a pocket watch on a gold chain. At family dinners we would hear a train whistle in the distance and Bob would pull out his watch, think for a second and then announce “That’s the 405 freight train from Buffalo due into the South Boston freight yard at 4;17.” Yes, he was a throwback, old-time, dyed-in the-wool railroad guy.

    On the rides to and from Fenway, Uncle Bob stood in the well of the car’s center doorway. I stood in the well also, just in front of him, while he held my shoulders to steady me against the rocking and speed changes of car. He offered running commentary the whole way. “We’re going about 68 now- we’ll get up to 85 shortly.” “We’ll be at the Allston Depot in 3 minutes.” “This car can hold about 150 in rush hour.” I had never travelled that fast on the ground before and when you stood in the door-well of the commuter train you were less than four feet above the blurred tracks rushing by below. I close my eyes and feel the sensation even today.

    In retrospect, at about 12 years old, it was a marvelous afternoon. I never truly understood until now how important that day was. I rode with a dinosaur on an antique while he practiced a dying custom. Or, stated differently,Uncle Bob knew life before automobiles, lived through two world wars and reached the pinnacle of most important engine of commerce in the country only to watch it dying as he aged alongside. Yet, what I remember most of him are the pocket watch and the ambiance of cigars that surrounded him: smoke, profile, aroma, ashtrays, chewed stubs and brown-stained napkins. His death wasn’t pretty but his life was rich and full. His persona endures in my head and heart. It resides most vividly in the memory of a September train ride to and from Fenway – and the smell of cigar smoke.

    Liked by 20 people

        1. Sadly, that doesn’t work. I don’t send the invitation – WordPress does. WordPress makes THAT email address privileged by sending to it and the email being received and answered from validates the user as somebody who owns the email. I do NOT get a copy, so there can be no shenanigans. WP acts as a front end to the whole process.

          Have you simply tried updating the email address in WordPress, at wordpress.com? It should only NOTIFY the old address – not require a response from it.

          Otherwise, you have to make a new account from a new email address. Several of our authors had to do that.

          Liked by 1 person

    1. The thing is, a whole lot of that would be still viable…..had not the parasites burrowed into it too deeply. Graft, union work rules, and government interference killed off railways.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. My father kept it in his top dresser drawer for the rest of his life. It was a Waltham watch – at the time a world-famous product.

        Waltham is a western suburb of Boston, two towns over from where I grew up in Wellesley. The town was generally more blue collar than my effete, hoity-toity “hamlet”. We used to play them in high school sports and they consistently kicked our butt.

        Waltham was also the watch capital of the US and their primary market was pocket watches, particularly marketed to the railroad industry. The main factory was in the center of town and today has been converted into another use. The city still is proud of its historic past as an industry leader.

        “Waltham Watch Company went out of business in 1957 when it became Waltham Precision Instrument Company. It was on March 10, 1960 that the shareholders of the old company received shares of the Waltham Precision Instrument Company (1 share for every 10 held) and also received shares in a Waltham Watch Company (a Delaware Company with offices in Chicago) (1 for every 50 held). In 1961 they issued a stock dividend (1 share for every 10 held) in Dextra Corporation. From what I have heard, Waltham finally went out of business in 1973 and Dextra failed in 1983.”

        Liked by 2 people

  5. When I was a kid, my parents listened to a lot of Peter, Paul & Mary, so I grew up with that music. My parents were conservatives, and PP&M didn’t become overtly Lefty until years later, if I understand correctly.

    Everybody just liked the music.

    The version of “This Train” that I know is PP&M’s version, which includes the ‘gamblers’ lyric, but omits others:

    This train don’t carry no gamblers, this train.
    This train don’t carry no gamblers, this train.
    This train don’t carry no gamblers,
    No crap shooters, no midnight ramblers,
    This train don’t carry no gamblers, this train.

    This train, don’t carry no jokers, well, this train.
    This train, don’t carry no jokers, well, this train.
    This train, don’t carry no jokers,
    No high-tone women, no cigar smokers, well
    This train, don’t carry no jokers, well, this train.

    This train, done carried my mother, well, this train.
    This train, done carried my mother, well, this train.
    This train, done carried my mother,
    My mother, my father, my sister and my brother,
    This train, done carried my mother, well this train.

    This train, she’s bound for glory, well, this train
    This train, she’s bound for glory, well, this train
    This train, she’s bound for glory, well, this train
    This train, she’s bound for glory,
    If you want to get to heaven then you’ve got to be holy, well,
    This train, she’s bound for glory, well, this train

    Liked by 6 people

    1. Just found this, same song (This Train (is Bound for Glory)), performed by Johnny Cash, Roy Orbison, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins, for the Johnny Cash Christmas TV Special, circa late 1960s or early 1970s I’m guessing:

      Liked by 2 people

  6. Which reminded me of another great ‘train’ song with a similar theme.

    It’s by Tom Waits, but the version I know is from Johnny Cash’s amazing 1994 come-back album, “American Recordings“. That was the first of 5 or 6 albums (titled ‘American Recordings’ II, III, IV, V, VI, including one posthumous) of mostly acoustic music that revitalized Johnny’s career until he passed away.

    I always knew “of” Johnny Cash, but I didn’t really know his music, except for a couple of his biggest hits. In 1995 I was reading a stereo magazine, probably Stereophile, and they did their “Best of Albums of the Year” [edit: “Records to Die For”]. The album “American Recordings” by Johnny Cash was on the list, and the short review actually got me to buy the album and give it a listen.

    It was even better than I could have imagined, and I bought all the remaining “American Recordings” albums as they came out in the following years. Most of them are very good, each has at least one or two great songs, but the first one will always be my favorite, every song is a great one 👍

    Song sample clips here: https://www.amazon.com/American-Recordings-Johnny-Cash/dp/B0092MHQDQ/ref=tmm_msc_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1573252461&sr=8-1

    Ha! I just found that old review, it was the write up in the 1995 Stereophile magazine, the 1995 “Records to Die For” list:

    ………………………………….
    JOHNNY CASH: American Recordings
    American 45520-1/-2 (LP/CD). Rick Rubin, prod.; Jim Scott, eng. AAA/AAD? TT: 41:54
    https://www.stereophile.com/content/1995-records-die-page-9

    I heard a knock at the door. I opened it, and in front of me stood a tall, heavily weathered man with a black Martin strapped across his back. He said he needed a place to rest, and had been attracted to my apartment by a Hank Williams song wafting through my open bedroom window. I invited him in, and watched and listened as the man in black tuned his guitar and began to sing.

    The rhythmic thuck-thuck of the stylus in the lead-out grooves of the first side of American Recordings rudely awakened me. The recording’s honesty had lulled me into that rare state of listening where the line between illusion and reality no longer exists. This album is an intimate recital of American popular music performed by one of its greatest, most persistent, and loyal advocates. (XVII-7)
    ………………………………….

    There’s a place I know where the train goes slow
    Where the sinner can be washed in the blood of the lamb
    There’s a river by the trestle down by sinner’s grove
    Down where the willow and the dogwood grow

    You can hear the whistle, you can hear the bell
    From the halls of heaven to the gates of hell
    And there’s room for the forsaken if you’re there on time
    You’ll be washed of all your sins and all of your crimes
    If you’re down there by the train
    Down there by the train
    Down there by the train
    Down there by the train
    Down there where the train goes slow

    There’s a golden moon that shines up through the mist
    And I know that your name can be on that list
    There’s no eye for an eye, there’s no tooth for a tooth
    I saw Judas Iscariot carrying John Wilkes Booth
    He was down there by the train
    Down there by the train
    Down there by the train
    Down there by the train
    He was down there where the train goes slow

    If you’ve lost all your hope, if you’ve lost all your faith
    I know you can be cared for and I know you can be safe
    And all the shamefuls and all of the whores
    And even the soldier who pierced the side of the Lord
    Is down there by the train
    Down there by the train
    Down there by the train
    Down there by the train
    Down there where the train goes slow

    Well, I’ve never asked forgiveness and I’ve never said a prayer
    Never given of myself, never truly cared
    I’ve left the ones who loved me and I’m still raising
    Cain I’ve taken the low road and if you’ve done the same
    Meet me down there by the train
    Down there by the train
    Down there by the train
    Down there by the train
    Down there where the train goes slow

    Meet me down there by the train
    Down there by the train
    Down there by the train
    Down there by the train
    Down there where the train goes slow

    Liked by 6 people

  7. Ohh Wolfie, terrific POST… evokes so many memories.

    Late Hubby smoked a pipe mostly, infrequently a cigar. I can smell/taste the smoke even now.

    And my Dad was a RR man… not a CEO but an engineer..

    Enjoyed your images of early flying ………………… ah, life was so different then.

    Sometimes I think I prefer residing in my head……………….. so comfy there 😉

    Thank you for sharing your memories…

    most of all, thank you for all that you do to help us get through these times.

    I like this aspect of the new site. Perhaps if folks can chill and share more with each other, we will all come to realize that we are all one… WWG1WGA ……….. so there’s no need to fight.

    Liked by 10 people

    1. AMEN!

      Seriously, we need to prepare for “being the news now” all the way to the Election 2020. It’s gonna be a rough ride. I need a site where I don’t have to worry about people problems – which frees up the other site to not have to worry about them either.

      We will REFLECT the MAGA ALLIANCE that we need to RE-CREATE for 2020.

      Liked by 3 people

  8. There is something about a woman smoking a cigar that I really find arousing, when me and Kimi play cards she smokes a cigar with her cap turned backwards.
    Epstein didn’t kill himself.

    Liked by 10 people

  9. I do not see the big deal about smoking.

    That said, it’s a great issue for public control: a method for extra tax that can be used in other parts of our lives, e.g. too much salt, soda pop and sugar.

    I also miss smoking sections, wherever they might have been. (Sigh.)

    Some of my best moves in life came via cigarettes (promotions, jobs, marriage).

    Someone on the UK’s Masterchef: The Professionals this week made a tobacco ice cream, inspired by her grandfather’s favourite blend, IIRC. Sorry to say that she was eliminated for that alone.

    Talk about pussification …

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Regulating and ultimately banning smoking, a legal activity akin to drinking coffee, is the left’s prelude to and rehearsal for gun confiscation. The parallels are simple and clearly drawn. They have conditioned us to accept the “scornification” of a personal choice.

      Liked by 11 people

      1. I hadn’t thought of it quite like that.

        What the smoking ban has done has made it difficult for smokers to get rented accommodation or purchase a condo and live a normal life, e.g. smoking indoors. Yet, it’s perfectly okay to smoke weed indoors in those same places.

        My source for that is a California man who used to comment on my site ten years ago. He told me quite a few anecdotes, that being one of them.

        He also had to be very careful about clothes when he attended job interviews. He said that prospective interviewers sniffed his clothing on occasion.

        Liked by 2 people

          1. Agree 110%!

            But any interviewee who would take that course of action would find himself arrested, his face all over the media and his future completely ruined.

            You’re in a much better position re lawsuits than the average American.

            If there is one law I would like to see overturned, it’s this blasted smoking ban.

            Because of it, Britain and Ireland have largely lost their pub culture. Tens of thousands have closed in the past 12 to 13 years.

            Liked by 3 people

  10. Later in the evening as you lie awake in bed
    With the echoes from the amplifiers ringin’ in your head
    You smoke the day’s last cigarette, remembering what she said…

    Ah Here I am, on a road again
    There I am, up on the stage
    Here I go, playing the star again
    There I go, turn the page…

    (live version, of course 😉 )

    Liked by 6 people

  11. Something not yet said…I remember the push by doctors, to give anxiety drugs to get people to quit smoking. One doc yelled at me saying I was “self medicating” with nicotine and I need anti-depressants. I gave him the finger without him seeing me do so. Never been depressed in my whole life.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Very interesting. And also ties into the weird fact that the correlation of certain drugs (some but not all SSRIs) and mass violence extends to anti-smoking drugs.

      JUST SAYIN’.

      The drive to get people to self-discredit is definitely working through the Democrats. Self-discreditation is a big first step toward CONTROL of the individual.

      Liked by 2 people

  12. Ultimately, it is as simple as government vs. community. For example, let’s talk about spitting. Did we need a law to regulate and or control spitting? No, the community standards of each town served to take care of the problem – a personal habit that offends many people. Smoking was viewed in a similar way. A personal habit that offended or, as in Dep. Pat.’s case, caused physical symptoms in other people. So we have a collision of personal choice and 3rd party rights. The private community was well on its way so self-regulating before the Liberal State saw the opportunity to control a large segment of the opposition (the perception and probably the reality that more smokers were conservatives). We had non-smoking sections, designated smoking areas and the societal habits were quickly adapting – all outside governmental control. The hospitality, transportation and allied industries would have fully accommodated and dealt with the issue of smoking on their own, more efficiently, more politely, less-onerously and simply better. Moreover, the INDUSTRY would have, by now, eliminated 99% of the carcinogens (vaping) and the more obnoxious smells simply by industrial engineering and genetic modification had it not been raided by the completely ludicrous “tobacco litigation” a/k/a The Lawyers Free Employment and Wealth Redistribution Act” by which the left obtained a multi-generational bankroll using corporate theft. One of the many reasons I left law practice was the absolutely criminal plaintiff personal-injury industry that is as corrupt as anything in DC. The tobacco litigation is but one of a dozen I can rattle off.

    As I alluded to before, this 40-year social control exercise is simply the model for the gun industry and the 2nd Amendment. I think we have staved it off for the next generation of the SCOTUS but it will never go away. The left knows that it will never get the 2ndA removed from the Constitution. It does not view the 2ndA as a right It is an impediment, a roadblock to fascist control of the “rebellious” elements of society and the elitist dream of unchecked monarchic rule.

    Liked by 4 people

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