I remember back in the day going to clubs and bars and never thinking twice about the scene. Dancing the night away and drinking was the thing to do. Oh, let me not forget to mention the smokers. Most everywhere you went, there was smoke rising to the ceilings, filling the air-conditioning vents, permeating every orifice in the room. It was just something that was part of the nightlife in New York City and anywhere else in the world I suppose. I never really noticed the smell until I came home and started stripping off my clothes. As the shirt was pulled off the smell hit my nostrils and reminded me of the night. I couldn’t put it in the hamper with the rest of the laundry. Straight into the wash went the duds.
As the years went by it was decided that smoking was now a health issue. People died of lung, mouth and throat cancer. Even second hand smoke was shown to be a problem. Now, Commercials are aired to make people aware of the health crisis with smoking tobacco. Children are protected and used in these commercials with pathetic little faces that tell the world that they are being killed by their parents that smoke.
For a while U.S. government instructed establishments to provide separate smoking and smoke-free areas. Dining had become a bit more pleasurable, until the wind blew the smoke in the direction toward the smoke-free areas, that is. We didn’t have a choice at the time. It was now law and if we didn’t like it we could either ask that they not smoke or move, or even worse, not dine out at all. Some businesses suffered.
Eventually, smoking was banned altogether indoors. Now people are forced to smoke outside through bitter winters. Stamping their feet, these die-hard smokers continue their vice. I smoked a cigar here and there when I was younger but now when I walk out of a building where smokers are enjoying their cigarette the smoke is offensive. Somehow I feel that these smokers being restricted to being outside by the exit just isn’t enough. I am sure I am not the only one affected entering and exiting a building and experiencing the second hand smoke.
Perhaps what we need are more of what I saw on my trip overseas this past week. While en route to Barcelona, Spain, I had to transfer flights in Frankfurt, Germany. Walking through the long corridor from what seemed to be one end of the airport to the other, I saw several glass enclosures that separated the smokers from the rest of the crowd.
Desperately needing their fix, smokers walked into this “cage” to finally experience the taste of nicotine that they had missed during the long hours of their flight. Everyone stopped to watch this odd phenomenon. I guess I wasn’t the only one who had never seen such a structure before. A smoking cage… What a novel idea. Many took pictures. I took several to show as an example here.
Now, if we can only come up with a way to keep those crying kids that are always two rows behind you quiet. AAAAARGGGH!!! Hmmm… Light-bulb moment…
The “Bawler Retention And Transportation Silencer” (BRATS)”