Friday, August 24, 2007

lies smokers tell

I'm probably going to crucify myself in the process, but the following are things that non-smoker's should probably question if a smoker says it. I know a lot of smokers besides myself - and I've also noticed, objectively mind you, that these are pretty standard things:

“I only smoke about 8 a day.”
(Add at least another 5 cigarettes to that. Just like when you ask a guy how many people he's slept with.)

“I never buy my own cigarettes.”
(They don't. They're not lying. Yet. (They will eventually buy their own though). But until then, they smoke everyone else's after a few drinks.)

“I forgot to smoke yesterday, it was incredible. Giving up isn't so bad.”
(They didn't forget to smoke. Not for five minutes, especially if they were bored. Sure, if they were diving with whale sharks, they might've not been able to smoke. But in reality, nicotine is a drug, and people don't forget what a craving is. They just tried not to smoke, which is why they didn't. And here's something for free: giving up is hell. I've done it seven times.)

“I love smoking, that's why I do it.”
(They do, when all their mates smoke. Like mine. But I can tell you how shit it is to be a smoker around people who don't smoke. That's when I hate being a smoker. And these days, people are smoking less in my circles.)

“I hate having to stand outside in a monsoon when I have to smoke at a non-smoking house/office.”
(Lies. They fucking love it. That's why you'll always see people puffing away in the rain, huddled in a corner. When I lived in Colorado, while there was a frigging blizzard raging outside, I was huddled outside puffin' on a 'stogie.' “Smoke Breaks” are only but the most exciting things on Earth, especially when the day is slow.)

“I didn't have ONE cigarette today”
(Maybe. But would question it. Also be warned – CrankyPants will now bite your head off.)

“I only had one puff of someone else's smoke.”
(Actually, they had five puffs of the last ten cigarettes being passed around.)

“I feel so healthy now that I've given up.”
(Wrong. You feel fat. Sure, no more post-nasal drip perhaps. And maybe you can run a marathon now. Do you have any idea how fucking fat a smoker feels after giving up? I put on flipping 8 kilos after giving up the first time.)

“I've saved so much cash.”
(Negative Ghostrider. They're actually spending more on alcohol and Nine West boots now. You can't fool me.)

“I'd never smoke filter cigarettes, I'll always smoke lights.”
(I smoke lights. Marlboro Lights to be precise. But if I was stuck in the desert and a rescue team could only drop me a pack of Marlboro Red Filters, I would thank the Lord Jesus Christ for such mercies.)

“I've stopped smoking. No honest.”
(Then why did I see you sneaking off to puff away behind the garden shed just now?)

“I don't smoke in front of my folks. They don't know. I just tell then I'm going to the bathroom when we're at a restaurant, or I need a 'some fresh air' or I'm 'going to the shops' or whatever.”
(Smokers have exceptionally small bladders. You'll find, for whatever the reason is they're not smoking at a dinner party, that they go to the bathroom seven times during the starter, and take regular walks into the garden to “check out the jasmine.” Amazing, the more they smoke, the more they need to pee. Odd isn't it.)

And remember above all, they're brilliant at deception. Smokers are clever little fuckers who know how to cover their tracks. They know they actually need to shower, brush their teeth, wash their hair, change their clothes, spray half a bottle of perfume, open all the windows, use air-freshener, then eat something afterwards (to hide the mint taste of the toothpaste, because that's obvious too) to hide their tracks.

Not that I do any of the above, or ever have. Just my observations, no truly.


Billy said...

Explain this Smokey Pea.

If i dont drink i can go for weeks without a smoke but when i drink i can smoke 40 in a night. True as Bob, for 18 months now i havent had a smoke if im not boozing and i dont booze during the week most of the time. Before that i was a 20 - 40 a day smoker who loved it.

Peas on Toast said...

Hey Bill. Well I read somewhere that alcohol processes nicotine in the blood much quicker, so you crave more. Which is why casual or social smokers can also smoke up a storm. Who knows, I just know that when I give up, I'm going to have to give up booze for a while too.

It's a whole life change. I always marvel at people who can just smoke socially, one or two. I'm an all or nothing smoker, so this never works for me.

Heddles said...

Hello Peas!

I am one of those cocky bummers and bouncers of smokes. It's pathetic. But throw a bottle of wine down me and I feel I am justified. Who would ever do that sober?

Has Boeing recovered from his man-flu at least?

Peas on Toast said...

Howzit Heddles!

Don't worry, I was the same. Until eventually I felt so bad, I started buying my own. Therein lies the monster. But know that smokers love having other smokers around too - it makes them feel better about themselves. So we're happy to give up our smokes if it means we're in good company, especially after a couple of toots.

Boeing is over his man-flu for the most part :)

Brandon said...

Here's a tip: don't watch Apocolypse Now if you've recently quit.

SheBee said...

Why, today of all days, do you have to discuss being a smoker, when I have just decided to quit?

I was doing pretty well until I clicked on you and had to stop reading mid-post, and go for a smoke?


Thats my excuse, and I'm sticking to it!

Johnny Quarterback said...

actually peas you should always subtract 5 when a man tells you how many women he's slept with. With women you should always add 2.

well done on getting an article in the Times! You're a regular celebrity round these parts.

duke said...

Maybe I should review my girl's claims that she's quit. Maybe I've just been quietly deceived for the last 5 years....

Peas on Toast said...

Brandon - thanks mate :)

SheBee - oh hells bells, good luck with it doll! Admirable, and hope it goes well. x

Johnny - yeah, yeah, yeah, wha-eva! :)
Thanks babe x

duke - nah, I'll give her the benefit of the doubt. If it's been 5 years she's really a non smoker now and doesn't crave it at all. Well done her!

Izz said...

I agree, with sleeping-with claims, re okes, substract a lot, with chics, add a lot. Sounds sexist buy hey, like you saying, they smoke a couple of them after a few drinks.

As for me, I think I use to be the #1 second hand smoker back at varsity, what with hanging with only smokers in my circle.

Peas on Toast said...

Izz - yeah I find usually that non-smokers stick with non-smokers and smokers with smokers. Second hand smoke sucks ass.

As for girl/guy sleeping claims - I still find guys have more notches in the bedpost. Which is odd, since the population is roughly 50/50 right?

Insane Insomniac said...

With the smoking ban that's taken its strangling hold of the UK, its amazing to see the smokers huddled under our pathetic awnings during a storm, just for a quick fag.

Granted, I wish I smoked. t would give me a reason to sit on my ass for five minutes during a shift.

Peas on Toast said...

Insane - I promise you now babe, you're glad you don't smoke. Honestly!

But have heard about the bans tormenting the Brits. Crazy, cos across the Channel, the French wouldn't dream of bans :)

boldly benny said...

I smoked for 10 years and I gave up last year April and... I FUCKING MISS IT! I love smoking! Yes, my skin looks great, I don't have shortness of breath, I don't get sick, I don't have morning man voice but I still miss it!

My non-smoking friends would probably hit me over the head and hanging out with non-smokers definitely helps kick the habit but shitskys what I'd give for a drag, the only thing that stops me is that I know a drag would never taste as good as I remember it to taste!

I didn't pack on any weight, in fact I actually lost weight but fuck I drank ALOT - where as I'd usually have a smoke break between drinks I just carried on drinking!

Parenthesis said...

You arre truly gifted. I have never read such an insightful and witty expose of the crap us smokers put up with. I quit smoking three years ago - the 13th of March to be precise, and was so chuffed with my success that I lit up on the 14th to celebrate. You did forget to mention hording mountains of mint -perppermint, spearmint - chewing gum btw, unless that's just me ...

Peas on Toast said...

Boldly - well done girl! Shit, I can't believe you didn't put on weight. Well I suppose I shoved pies in my face when I gave up, and also - drank SO much when I went out. (Hand/fiddle with something thing)

But hey...I just love my man voice.

Peas on Toast said...

parenthesis - why thank you! :)

I love your attitude - you celebrated for giving up with a cigarette the very next day. Instead of waiting out the few months like I did. :)

Did I mention that I have stray Beechies and other gum floating around my handbag by the millions?

People forget us smokers have to deal with crap too. ;)

Koekie said...

One of my mom's friends (I'm talking 50+ years of age) still hides from her family/showers/changes her clothes/spritzes herself desperately with perfume every time she sneaks a smoke in the corner of her backgarden.

There comes a time where you just have to start being honest with yourself. Look in the mirror and admit: Yes, I am a smoker.

jen said...

August 12, 2007
Ideas & Trends
The Myth, the Math, the Sex
EVERYONE knows men are promiscuous by nature. It’s part of the genetic strategy that evolved to help men spread their genes far and wide. The strategy is different for a woman, who has to go through so much just to have a baby and then nurture it. She is genetically programmed to want just one man who will stick with her and help raise their children.

Surveys bear this out. In study after study and in country after country, men report more, often many more, sexual partners than women.

One survey, recently reported by the federal government, concluded that men had a median of seven female sex partners. Women had a median of four male sex partners. Another study, by British researchers, stated that men had 12.7 heterosexual partners in their lifetimes and women had 6.5.

But there is just one problem, mathematicians say. It is logically impossible for heterosexual men to have more partners on average than heterosexual women. Those survey results cannot be correct.

It is about time for mathematicians to set the record straight, said David Gale, an emeritus professor of mathematics at the University of California, Berkeley.

“Surveys and studies to the contrary notwithstanding, the conclusion that men have substantially more sex partners than women is not and cannot be true for purely logical reasons,” Dr. Gale said.

He even provided a proof, writing in an e-mail message:

“By way of dramatization, we change the context slightly and will prove what will be called the High School Prom Theorem. We suppose that on the day after the prom, each girl is asked to give the number of boys she danced with. These numbers are then added up giving a number G. The same information is then obtained from the boys, giving a number B.

Theorem: G=B

Proof: Both G and B are equal to C, the number of couples who danced together at the prom. Q.E.D.”

Sex survey researchers say they know that Dr. Gale is correct. Men and women in a population must have roughly equal numbers of partners. So, when men report many more than women, what is going on and what is to be believed?

“I have heard this question before,” said Cheryl D. Fryar, a health statistician at the National Center for Health Statistics and a lead author of the new federal report, “Drug Use and Sexual Behaviors Reported by Adults: United States, 1999-2002,” which found that men had a median of seven partners and women four.

But when it comes to an explanation, she added, “I have no idea.”

“This is what is reported,” Ms. Fryar said. “The reason why they report it I do not know.”

Sevgi O. Aral, who is associate director for science in the division of sexually transmitted disease prevention at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said there are several possible explanations and all are probably operating.

One is that men are going outside the population to find partners, to prostitutes, for example, who are not part of the survey, or are having sex when they travel to other countries.

Another, of course, is that men exaggerate the number of partners they have and women underestimate.

Dr. Aral said she cannot determine what the true number of sex partners is for men and women, but, she added, “I would say that men have more partners on average but the difference is not as big as it seems in the numbers we are looking at.”

Dr. Gale is still troubled. He said invoking women who are outside the survey population cannot begin to explain a difference of 75 percent in the number of partners, as occurred in the study saying men had seven partners and women four. Something like a prostitute effect, he said, “would be negligible.” The most likely explanation, by far, is that the numbers cannot be trusted.

Ronald Graham, a professor of mathematics and computer science at the University of California, San Diego, agreed with Dr. Gale. After all, on average, men would have to have three more partners than women, raising the question of where all those extra partners might be.

“Some might be imaginary,” Dr. Graham said. “Maybe two are in the man’s mind and one really exists.”

Dr. Gale added that he is not just being querulous when he raises the question of logical impossibility. The problem, he said, is that when such data are published, with no asterisk next to them saying they can’t be true, they just “reinforce the stereotypes of promiscuous males and chaste females.”

In fact, he added, the survey data themselves may be part of the problem. If asked, a man, believing that he should have a lot of partners, may feel compelled to exaggerate, and a woman, believing that she should have few partners, may minimize her past.

“In this way,” Dr. Gale said, “the false conclusions people draw from these surveys may have a sort of self-fulfilling prophecy.”