Emily and I recently returned from a trip to New Orleans. It was my first vacation. Yes, it was awesome. I highly recommend it as a place to spend time, for any reason. But before I began writing this post, I had to drive to the store to get cigarettes. It is 3:36 am and there passed no thought through my head that I might wait. I still had a few, just not enough, I knew, to get through the writing of this+prebedtime+wake up and adjustment. That led me to think of cigarettes on my way to the store, and the lengths I will go to for their presence. During our vacation, we made multiple cigarette stops. Gas stations, dispensers, gift shops, random passersby. We were a great deal more likely to spend time in places that allowed smoking. We befriended the other smokers, during those totally socially acceptable, beautiful spaces of time where you meet random bar people from random places and asking completely personal questions is reasonable. Camels were the third party of our vacation. I have no idea when this harmless little habit overtook me so thouroghly. I say harmless, and yes, I know they kill you. It is common knowledge, the cancer, heart disease, yada yada. But everyone knows, and still, we prevail. Smokers smoke. Screw it. And so, it becomes harmless. No one says, “Dude, livin on the edge. Smoking. That’s hardcore.” There is no accolade for the smoker, who risks it all for love of the Big C. We’re the underground thrill-seekers. We make a bet that it won’t be us, then like true badasses, wait decades to see if we won. Gambling at the extreme. Because of the brave nature of the addiction, I’m a firm believer in the smoking section. Bring it back. We work hard for that space.