This blog is welcome to anyone and everyone, regardless of race, class, gender, sexual orientation, or political affiliation. Unless you don't like writing short stories or smelling bear. Or if you voted for the other guy. Also, I don't really like it when you leave up the toilet seat, so could you stop doing that? Muchas, muchas gracias.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006


So many things have happened to me over this past week, but I haven't found the time to write about them. So I'll just tell you about one thing, since it's on my mind a lot. A secret: I started smoking again, maybe a month ago, or maybe a little more. American Spirits (which have no additives -- they're the healthy cigarette!), yellow pack.

The night before last, I decided that I had better things to do with my spare time than smoking, so I quit again. And as you can probably read into this, I'm jonesing pretty hard. This time, it's a sentimental jones, where each brand seems to signify an era.

I've stuck with American Spirits the longest, mainly because I like them and they're not impossible to find. There's something about the guy on the pack that implies smoking is ceremonial and therefore all right. It's true that smoking feels ceremonial sometimes, as does a beer after a hard workout. Today is the first rainy day of the year, so it seems as though something ceremonial is in order. I spent my evening with Matty, and I ate whatever I felt like eating. Meaning, absolute junk. I will revert back to salads and fish once the feeling of deprivation passes.

Before American Spirits, I smoked Hong Meis. These babies were only three cents a pack, and they were s t r o n g . I was thoroughly, thoroughly hooked on Hong Meis for about a year. If it wasn't for them, I might have become addicted to eating or sucking my thumb, I don't know.

Hong Meis were preceded by Export A Lights,

which I could find without much problem in Seattle. These Canadian cigs had goooood filters, and I loved the flat, square box and the tightness with which the tabacco was packed. They were the best quality cigarette I regularly smoked. Funny, then, how readily I took to Hong Meis, which tasted like something that cows once slept on.

And finally, here's the thing that got me started in the first place:

My father's brand, Winston's, which I smoked in the woods across the street. This was always at night-time, and usually it was raining because that's where I grew up: in the rain. I hoped nobody would see me. Someone did, though -- the neighbor, a Mary Kay Cosmetics saleswoman, who tried to rat me out to my mother. Little did she know that my own mother started smoking herself when she was fourteen, and my grandmother didn't care a whit.

That's all I'm going to say about cigarettes for now. I've started working out and doing lots of yoga as a way to curb the desire. I can't say I know where all of this is leading or why I decided to quit right now, at this point in time, but it seemed important this week that I make some changes. Something's got to give, I guess.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

The only brand I've heard of there is the Winston's - at least you're a smoker with some originality and character. One of my best friends rolls-her-owns - somehow it seems to make it more OK to do.

Cool post! Good luck with the quitting...

11:00 PM

Blogger Ahva Rahn said...

At an outdoor T stop (Boston metro) last night on the line that ferries students, a guy slouched and smoked. Everybody that passed him looked at him as if he was naked and ugly. Their faces were full of repulsion; all screwed up like bulldogs chewing wasps. I smoked Ing. I liked to smoke. (Gitanes, but I went considerably milder when it became a pain in all places to get them) Now it is obvious that the smoker is ostracized more and more each day. I don’t agree with that. My father (ex-smoker) discouraged me. I finally gave up on the day he died; an expensive quitting process. It worked.

I wish you well Ing,


6:38 AM

Blogger ing said...


I've noticed that about the roll-your-owns. . . I work with a couple of people who smoke them. Filterless, though -- that's pretty rough.

I guess people don't associate tobacco companies with roll-your-owns (forgettting about Zig Zag® and Drum®).



Sometimes I think unhappy souls love the opportunity to openly hate someone else out of a sense of righteousness. It's very small-minded, I agree. I've yet to meet a smoker who doesn't realize that one doesn't light up in someone else's house or in a maternity ward or something.

7:44 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

You've been tagged! Go check my blog...

8:06 AM

Blogger ticharu said...

See what I mean, totally romantic, you even make me nostalgic for those evil little coffin nails and I've not smoked a ciggie since 1984!
So Ing, I've had that track ready for a few days now, but I need an e-mail which to send it, can you e-mail me with the right address and I'll get to ASAP!

1:59 PM

Blogger ing said...


TWENTY?! Okay. Give me a few. . .



Romantic, naive, constantly setting myself up for disappointment, ridiculous, out-of-touch, optimistic, crazy -- I don't know what to call it, but yeah, that's how I make it along. I will be one of those doddering old ladies who can go on and on and on about every detail of every day in her youth. Since I'm not going to have children or grandchildren, I hope I've perfected the tale before that happens, because the world will need to have patience with me, should I grow old despite the years of smoking.

I sent something to Plum Flower & await the music. . .

5:15 PM

Blogger lryicsgrl said...

Ah, but did you ever smoke "True Blues"? They were so disgusting. But, when you are determined to smoke, you will smoke anything....humans are wired to be addicted. I think everyone "jones" for something.

Um, I think Jarrett Fenlon is married. Or maybe not....I'll go check his bio, and let you know.

Thanks for stopping by....

6:13 PM

Blogger josh williams said...

I had a girlfriend move in to my house about 14 years ago for about 3 years. I smoked off and on since I was about 13 so at this point of my life a larger portion of my life I was a smoker.
This gal, nice lady was a vegetarian very much so, but not to preachy, or tried her best not to be she even fried me bacon for a sandwich one time and remarked on how good it smelled.At anyrate she pointed out an ad in Vegetarian Times ? or some such rag an ad for American Spirits and suggested I try them. I was never a heavy smoker and tried to enjoy each one. I did make it a ritual so I would take a smoke break, as a rule I would not smoke in the house.American Spirit had the Turquoise color then and yes they were strong and were hard to keep lit, in fact I would put one back in the pack when I became distracted it burnt out and I just thought I am not going to let this much pleasure go to waste. About eleven years ago I quit for good, it took about 3 years for me to realize I did not want a smoke, they did not appeal to me at all, it only took 3 years for a light smoker. DO NOT SMOKE! YOU ARE AN ADDICT! no shit it took me about six attempts and I finally realized I was not a smoking hobbyist, I knew if I wanted to quit for good I could never smoke again.cigs. Good luck and do not cave; it just starts all over again.

10:46 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not to check and tick to confirm and catch'ya out, but I do remember your preference for Marlboro Lights. It was when I had a thing for Camel Lights. And there I want to write Camel Licht for the exotic sound.

Funny the way Dutch can sound exotic. Maybe it has something about going around some worlds on a ship and clunking onto shore, finding naked people, their spices, having a great party, packing up the tobac and heading out again. Before wheels.

4:26 AM

Blogger sage said...

I've never been much a smoker... Smoked more cigars than cigarettes--and always thought that the ideal way to do that would be to raise your tobacco (that kind of runs in my family) and roll your own. But my granddaddy who raised tobacco died when I was 9, so I never really learned how. Good luck on working out and quiting.

6:32 AM

Blogger Friends of McDougal said...

Have you tried the Power Balls?

They're a mixture of cocaine, heroin and pure powdered nicotine that I get from a friend at Phillip Morris.

They're addictive as hell, but they taste great and you don't smell like an ashtray all the time.

Wait, actually ... what the hell is that smell?

It smells like bare feet and ... wait ... no ... it smells like bear feet ... and ... I don't know ... maybe wasabi?

Oh shit.


6:37 AM

Blogger matty said...

Ah, for me it will always be Salem. Smooth and cool. I miss them and had only just started again when you made me quit. I am glad, tho. It is so funny. I was planning on doing a post about my smoking issue tonight/tomorrow. I still might.

Antlers! Goldfrapp!!!

3:30 PM

Blogger Crashtest Comic said...

The worst part about smoking is having that first early morning cigarette of the day on the toilet bowl.

You ever cough and fart at the same time? It's a disaster waiting to happen!

7:28 PM

Blogger ing said...


Yes, please do get back to me. But tell him he's going to have to stop crying, eventually, if he plans on sticking around.

I have not tried the True Blues -- it sounds like a menthol. I used to like those clove cigs. . .



Okay, and your ex-girl sounds very nice.



Check and tick to confirm and catch'ya out? Is that what you write on your student evals? Hoo boy!

Why doesn't Englicht sound exotic? (Chinese people say it sounds like running water.)



Your grandaddy was a cannabis farmer? Woah!


F of McD:

I stay away from those things -- I heard that they make your face slide off, revealing the invisible man behind the facade, and you have to wear a hat so the swallows won't fly into your head.



To antlers!! (Two of them.)




1:12 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

By the sounds of it, you HAVE quit smoking. Get a grip. Enjoy a Marlboro light.

My students like me. I write in English.

4:01 PM

Blogger ing said...

I'm sure your students like you. Your English is a pleasure to read.

7:52 PM


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