A few years back I quit smoking cigarettes. It was a good thing. It was the smart thing to do. I had already slowed to the pace of the occasional smoker, only with friends and only a night or two a week. So when my wife to be asked me to cut the habit for good, I was fine with it. It wasn’t the first time I had quit. The college I went to had anti-smoking policies, so during the semesters I was nicotine free. I’ve never had what I would consider an addiction: the hardest part of not smoking was feeling a bit awkward when hanging out with my still-smoking friends. It was the fidgeting of my fingers that just felt empty, not a nervous need for a smoke.
I distinctly remember one of the times that I quit (don’t judge, most quit at least twice). I had over half a pack left, but I had decided to drop it, at least for the time being. I walked out of a grocery store and lit up my “last” one. I looked down in the pack and saw all those lovely white sticks, those eleven or twelve perfectly recessed filters and wonderfully scripted blue type elegantly letting the reader know that the bit of heaven they are about to enjoy is a Parliament.
Now being the cheap person that I am, I couldn’t throw them away. That had been my intention, but now that the moment of truth was upon me, the trashcan at my right hand, I couldn’t do it. I know you’re probably thinking that I was just having second thoughts about quitting, but that really wasn’t it. I couldn’t just throw them away. I spent four bucks on that pack, and I wasn’t about to chuck it in the trash.