This came up in the comments and it’s also on Simon Clark’s blog.
If you stop smoking in your home or confine your smoking to one room, they will give you a little badge. A silver badge for confined smoking and a gold badge if you go outside your own home to smoke.
They are still in denial over the reason we smokers don’t visit pubs so much, aren’t they? It’s because we have to go outside to smoke and when it’s cold and wet, that means pubs are not pleasant places to be. Now, if a publican doesn’t want people to smoke in his pub, well it’s his pub. He can apply whatever rules he wants. I would not expect to be allowed to, nor would I have any desire to, impose my rules on someone else’s property – because I am not a neo-Nazi, self-important, bearer of the One True Revelation, antismoking dog’s foreskin with lips pursed tighter than a shrew’s anus.
In my house, which I am paying for, and which will one day actually be mine, I decide what visitors can and cannot do. Okay, I am not going to insist you smoke, it’s not compulsory, but one fake cough, wrinkled nose or hand wave and I will get a sudden urge to not have visitors. The door will open and when it closes, that visitor will be on the other side of it. I will never get the little gold badge and guess how upset I am about that?
Not at all.
As for confining myself to one room in my house when I am paying for all of it, no. I am already effectively banned from smoking most places outside my house, I will not self-impose any kind of ban inside. The line in the sand is most definitely drawn. Cross if you wish, there’s a pit of spikes this side of it. I won’t get the little silver badge either. I am not interested in having a badge that marks me as a compliant drone. Give it to one of the weasels.
There are some rooms I rarely, if ever, smoke in. The bedroom is for sleeping in. I go in there when I am tired and I go to sleep. I don’t smoke in bed, nor do I read in bed. I sleep there. Next day I will make a coffee before having a smoke. Now that I think of it, my tobacco never even goes in the bedroom.
There’s the spare room – I don’t go in there unless I want something from storage. I’m not in there long enough to smoke.
The kitchen. My hands are busy making food or drink, or are wet when washing up. I don’t eat or drink in the kitchen and don’t see it as a relaxation room – the comfy chairs are elsewhere. It’s not a place to sit and smoke and besides, it’s often cold in there. Heating is focused on the rooms I use more often.
None of these are non-smoking areas. They are just places I’m not using as smoking areas. If I have a visitor in the spare room and they want to smoke in there, I will provide an ashtray. There’s already one in the kitchen anyway.
This is the most patronising and insulting idea the antismokers have come up with yet. Awarding some tawdry certificate to people who accept that the antismokers have the right to tell them how to live in their own homes? Oh, there will be takers, I am sure. The drones will clamour for the ‘I am a compliant idiot’ stickers and display them with pride. ‘Look at me, I am doing as I am told’.
What next? Will they be part of the home information packs for prospective buyers? If so, when the day comes for me to sell up, I’ll get one by lying. I have no qualms about lying to the antismokers – they have never been troubled by all the lies they have told me. The house will be thoroughly infused with third hand smoke but I’ll just lie. And no, it does not ‘stink’ as the antismokers insist, because I clean it. They cannot tell by sniffing. The best part is, they are convinced that they can.
How about we have our own smoker’s ‘badges’? Nothing so blatant as a certificate on the wall. Instead we could indulge in a little symbolism. Some small item on a shelf.
I have a collection of shiny stones (I like to tell people that money will soon be worthless and we’ll all be buying things with shiny stones soon) and lots of these stones have mystical attributes attached to them. I don’t care about the mystical attributes, I just like the stones.
So let’s stay away from the dreadfully tacky gold and silver awards and just place a particular stone where it can be noticed. I picked out a few stones to get the ball rolling, How about this –
If you are a nonsmoker who does not hate smokers, whether that be a smoker-supporter (careful, you’ll be an accessory to SHS!) or someone who just does not care about smoking at all, place a piece of quartz on view. It does not mean you have to allow smoking in your house – your house, your rules – it just means you do not support measures to stop me smoking in mine.
In case there’s someone who doesn’t know what quartz looks like (it is never safe to assume everyone in the world shares your interests) here’s a picture of one of mine –
If there is occasional smoking in your house – maybe you have visiting relatives who smoke, maybe you smoke once in a while, maybe you’re a nonsmoker who doesn’t mind smoking visitors, then tiger eye is the stone to signal your stance to visitors.
It’s hard to get a good photo, it’s reflective and it shimmers, but this is it –
Finally, if there is active smoking in your house whenever you’re in it, display a crystal of bismuth. This is mine –
A lot prettier than a patronising certificate, aren’t they? They are not ‘awarded’, you decide whether to get one or not. It’s not some drive to get compliance, it’s entirely your choice. You need not display anything more than a few ashtrays or even a ‘please don’t smoke’ sign to indicate your preference although I would advise against the latter. Personally, I would not light up unless I could see an ashtray in use and if it was my first time in your house, I’d ask whether you minded anyway. A sign is insulting.
The choice of bismuth for the smoker’s signal is deliberate. It’s a particularly stunning crystal and everyone is going to want one. If it becomes established as an ‘it’s okay to smoke here’ indicator, antismokers dare not get one.
Note that I do not endorse any of the cystal sites I linked to there. I haven’t tried any of them, they are just sources of information. I shop around on eBay for good stones and there are many seaside shops selling them. Real shops let you choose one you like and are often cheaper – because there’s no postage.
The list can be expanded if anyone has any ideas. Or it can be changed if anyone has better ideas. Just – no gold or silver. The antis have co-opted those for their compliance badges so let them have those. Let them push the drones into accepting their ‘awards’.
We will get our own and award them to ourselves. No funding, no organisation, no committees, nothing. We buy a rock or we don’t buy a rock and we don’t give a damn who has a rock and who doesn’t.
Note to government – whatever you are paying these people, we have been doing the same thing in the opposite direction for free. Have you noticed that yet? Guess how much funding Octabber had? Guess how many committees met to set it up?
None at all. The hugely expensive Stoptober ran for 28 days and involved no real people. Octabber ran for 31 days, with 31 (correction – 35) real people’s stories, and cost nothing. Stoptober involved committees. Octabber had one central operator with random others calling in now and then.
I wonder how much the daft compliance-certificate idea has cost? How many meetings did they have? When it fails, as they always do, how much tax money was wasted? Has anyone worked out the cost to the NHS of antismokers? That figure doesn’t need to be made up, it’s right there in NHS accounts.
The smokers’ response, as always, involves no more than the price of a cheap rock (unless you get a really big one but that’s up to you) and will not involve meetings, it will develop on its own. If it fails, it’s cost nothing at all.
Ultimately the antismokers will run out of money. We never had any to start with.
That’s why all we really need is patience and bloody-minded persistence.