Seven Things I’ve Learned


Here are seven things I’ve learned since the end of February this year. I already knew them, but I can emphatically state them now, empirically, not just because I’m caustic.

  1. Food doesn’t taste better when you quit smoking. That’s a lie, a crock, a steaming pile. You need to chew something, to do something to satisfy the oral fixation which comes from smoking, so you eat. It doesn’t taste different, but you’ll stuff it in your face and chew it anyway. The taste is EXACTLY THE SAME AS IT ALWAYS WAS.
  2. You can’t smell things any better when you quit smoking than you did before you quit. When I smoked, I had a nose like a bloodhound. I could smell ingredients in food walking into a restaurant. Not just types of food; the individual components of food. My sense of smell is NOT enhanced by quitting. Period.
  3. You can’t breathe easier when you quit smoking. To hear ex-smokers tell it, they quit and within a few weeks could run marathons when they got winded walking to the mailbox before they quit. Another lie. Bullsh!t, I call. It’s another steamer, a big barrel of it. I’m just as easily winded now as before. Maybe more so.
  4. The cravings for cigarettes don’t stop after the third or fourth day. Bullsh!t again. I know a lady who quit 20 years ago. You know what she said? She said she’s wanted a cigarette for 20 years. It NEVER GOES AWAY.
  5. I don’t have more time because I’m not smoking. There are 24 hours in a day; that’s 1440 minutes; 86,400 seconds. There’s a period after that. There is a fixed amount of time in a day. Smoking has nothing to do with how much of it exists. Another Bumpy Brown Fish floating in the soup. That’s a turd, if you don’t know.
  6. You won’t have any more energy when you quit smoking than before you did. Another crock of crap. A huge load, in fact. I actually have LESS energy than before, and that’s quite something. Only slow-moving three-toed sloths have less than I do and that might be reversed now.
  7. You will have more money to spend on useless things. You’ll probably spend it on the extra food you consume. Or new clothes to accommodate the new, HUGE ass you’ve obtained by quitting. Or to buy gum to try and stem the tide of food sloughing into your mouth at every moment. That one IS true. Seeing it pile up? THAT’s a load of crap.

There you have it. A list of seven things I learned since February of this year, when I quit smoking. Why do smokers lie like this, perpetuate this stupidity?

Because if they don’t tell themselves these things, they won’t have ANY motivation to quit. None. Unemployment and need drove me. Nothing else.

Just thought I’d share.

-JDT-

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14 thoughts on “Seven Things I’ve Learned

  1. After having seen my father quit smoking and hearing him discuss it with me and other people, who are wrong. My father is right.

    You daddy’s boy. I stand by my sarcastic and cynical statements.

    He can taste food differently. His sense of smell is so heightened, he know claims he “can smell when a woman is busy.” After asking for a definition of that, I have learned that a when woman is busy, she is having her monthly visitor, aunt flow over; she is riding the crimson tide; she is bleeding out her woohoo.
    Nothing beats the dinner conversation at my house.

    Thanks for sharing that charming bit of TMI.

  2. You’ve gotten it so, so right! All of the above is true. I know. I quit February a year ago. And weight gain? OMG.

    Thank you for agreeing! I’m glad my wife and I aren’t the ONLY ones who see all this!

    First they got us all to quit smoking and now they moan because the nation is obese. What dunderhead came up with that one?

    Pff, don’t get me started!

    I quit because they were going to hike the tax on the things again at an enormous level. I got tired of paying the government for my smokes.

    Congrats on the success. 🙂 And, thank you for stopping by to share your experiences with me. I’m glad you did. 🙂

  3. I have friends who have quit and they disagree with some of those. They find that they do have more energy and endurance since they stopped. Smoking was hurting their basketball skills.

    I can’t say about that; never played basketball. Okay, I did in sixth grade, but I didn’t smoke.

    A lot of the others you mentioned are probably myths. But it is still good that you have stopped.

    Thanks for trying Bob, but I’m not seeing much “good” yet.

  4. Living extra years (and your children living more healthfully) is the real motivation.

    Sweetie, I don’t WANT any extra years like this. And the kids never smoked. 😉 Besides, I don’t think you “recover” the years you (supposedly) lost. I think the shortened lifespan, IF it’s not a myth (and I have reason to believe it IS a myth), is permanent. But “they” keep changing what “they” say is “true” so who knows? All I know is, with life like this, I don’t need or want extra years.

    • There is something to be said about dying young and leaving a beautiful corpse. Smoking, yes, shortens your life, but it makes you feel better, at least while you’re smoking, right.
      They say smoking can take ten years off your life. But not smoking makes you a grumpy person that nobody wants to be around.
      Which would you prefer: living to 70 or 80 years old but being grumpy the whole time; or dying at 50 or 60 but with a big ol’ smile on yer face? 10 years of joy or 20 years of misery?

  5. If you really feel that way and have such a lack of respect for your body, then feel free to take it up again. I think it is great that you made the decision to be healthier for your family. I also think that it is great that you have not given in to temptation over the last few months. But if none of what you have achieved over the last few months mean anything to you then go ahead. Start smoking again and tell us about how you have more time, money, etc.

    I don’t know what set you off here Bob, and I can’t speak for what your friends who’ve quit have experienced and said. I can only say — and WILL — what I know to be true. Just FYI, this ain’t my first rodeo. I’ve been a smoker almost as long as you’ve been ALIVE and I know what I know. I’ve quit before and had none of the benefits I listed in this post. I don’t this time either. If you know people who do, well good for them. In my opinion and experience, the claims I’ve highlighted here aren’t true. It may not be so for everyone.

    But that doesn’t mean I have a “lack of respect for my body” — what does that even mean? — or that I’d have more money time or anything else by smoking. All I’m saying is I didn’t get any of those supposed benefits by quitting — ANY of the times I did quit. Again, NOT my first time around the block.

    And as for going back — well, I chose to quit. I’ll stay quit if it’s all the same to you. Thanks.

    • What set me off is that I look at this post and I feel that you were either looking for pity or you were looking for people to try and convince you to start smoking again. I wasn’t going to give you pity for making what I see is the right decision. So I got a little bit angry.

      Your anger isn’t justified. I’m not looking for sympathy and even if I were, I wouldn’t be looking for it from people I don’t know OFF the Internet. Sorry you got miffed, but whether you feel the decision is right or not isn’t really relevant. It’s MY decision to make.

      And for the record, the whole thing was tongue in cheek. I have no idea why you took it so seriously, but that’s on you.

      Also yellowcat is right. The only reason you aren’t experiencing some of the benefits you consider “myths” is probably because you replaced one bad habit with another. According to the “money” paragraph it sounds like part of it is food.

      My diet hasn’t changed at all. Period.

      Speaking about how you don’t have more time? I doubt you smoked in front of the kids, so I am going to assume you smoked outside or in the bathroom. Instead of doing that you are now doing something else. You might not notice that you have more time but you do. It is all about how you use that time. You probably used some of that time writing the book you got published this year. The extra smoke breaks that you use to take, would have probably led to less sleep and tighter deadlines.

      Wrong. Sorry, but I quit AFTER writing the book. No WAY was I going to do something that high-pressure AND try to quit at the same time. And you know what? I got it done, on time, and yes, I smoked in the bathroom. But for reasons I’m not going into here, I don’t have any more time than I used to. Sorry, it’s still a myth, and I’m not the only one who thinks so. The day is still 24 hours long, just as I said in the post.

      I can go on but instead I am going to wait and see if you respond to the points I have brought up.

      I’ve responded, but I’m not really interested in continuing this discussion and arguing a personal decision with someone. If you don’t like the post, why bother commenting? No hard feelings but honestly, if you can’t say something nice… y’know? Besides, what’s it to you? Seriously, I’m not trying to be an ass here, but what do you care one way or the other? Once again, the post was mostly tongue in cheek. Just sayin’.

      • I didn’t feel it was tongue and cheek, I am sorry if I am misinterpreting things.

        I’m sorry the sarcastic eye-rolling didn’t come through. It did to my wife, but she knows me much better than anyone else, so I probably should have evaluated that before I posted it.

        Your diet hasn’t changed. Well I stand behind yellowcat’s comment. For you not to see any improvements on these myths, I believe you must have replaced one bad habit with another.

        I swear on a stack of Bibles it’s not true. Nothing’s changed in my lifestyle. I can’t AFFORD a new bad habit, seriously. Honest.

        The day is only 24 hrs but this isn’t about that. It is about what you do with the 24 hrs. If you spent 1 hr a day smoking before you must be spending that hour doing something different. Whether it is sleeping, eating, writing blogs or reading while in the washroom. Sorry that I got confused with the timeline with you writing your book and quitting smoking.

        I didn’t mean to imply you should have known that — remember I didn’t say anything about quitting until this post. I was just clearing up the time line with that statement.

        I did have nice things to say. I said them and you responded with:

        “Thanks for trying Bob, but I’m not seeing much “good” yet.”

        After I feel I was nice and encouraging, I felt your response wasn’t very nice.

        See, my thanks wasn’t sarcasm. I was sincerely saying thank you for trying to find a silver lining, but I don’t see one, yadda yadda. This wasn’t me NOT being nice; I didn’t agree is all. I’m sorry my sincerity didn’t come through and it seemed snide. I did NOT intend that at all. At ALL.

        Now… why do I care? I know we have never met and we don’t know each other very well but I am sorry but I cared about you. I have been reading both you and ‘Ness’s blogs for awhile now and I care how your family is doing. If you don’t want me to care, I guess I can stop reading. I don’t want to but I can try.

        No, I don’t want you not to care. I appreciate the concern. I think I meant more specifically about whether or not I got any benefits from quitting, but I see this was probably me starting to be a bit harsher than I should have. I apologize; your concern is touching and I’m grateful. Thank you. And you are always welcome to read here.

        Another reason why I care is because I have a friend who engages in self-destructive habits. I have tried convincing him not to but nothing has helped. You may feel your blog has no effect on others but I have noticed since your blog, that my friend has taken a more loose attitude on his self-destructive habits. I don’t want to see either one of you hurt yourselves and the only way I can try to help you both is by typing words and hoping they are read and understood.

        I’m sorry your friend thinks I’ve provided license for him to behave badly toward himself or others. But I think this friend — and correct me if I’m not thinking of the same person you are and we’re talking about a lurker or someone else — is a grown man and has to make his own choice. I hope he’s bright enough to see how silly it would be for him to act out based on what he reads on a blog. I can’t take responsibility for his actions, but I know you’re concern for him is genuine. I think maybe a heart-to-heart with him might have more impact than my blog.

        Thank you for being willing to work this out. I’m sorry it seemed more escalated than necessary. No hard feelings, I hope.

  6. I’ve smoked maybe one pack of cigarettes in the whole of my life, so I can’t say much about what is true and what isn’t on the myth front. It does seem that children are much more likely to smoke in their adult years if their parents smoke. From what I see, this is true, but there are plenty of exceptions I’m sure.

    I’m sure there are, but I think the statistic overwhelmingly show how much more likely someone is to smoke if their parents did/do. That’s the primary motivation for me.

    My grandmother smoked. Quit once. Went back. Died of lung cancer. Because she smoked? Well, I didn’t have a control/non-smoking grandma to test that, so I won’t say. Actually, I think she died of depression, but that is a whole nother conversation.

    I’ve got lots of examples of both types: I know people who smoked unfiltered cigarettes since they were about 10 years old and lived to be 90 or more. I know others who never touched the stuff and died from lung cancer. It’s a tough call because we DON’T have that control to test.

    I would venture to say that since you are undergoing a great deal of stress on the money/job front, perhaps that influences a few things too. I only say this because when I’m miserable or stressed, food doesn’t taste good and I don’t smell the flowers. Then again, I’m not that interested in food anyway and can’t tell the difference between hamburger and chopped steak.

    I don’t argue being stressed creates havoc; no two ways about it, and I think STRESS kills more people than smoking does, but I can’t prove it. Still, I see none of the benefits I was supposed to see. Others may have variance in mileage, however.

    You may not want the extra years, but your children probably want them for you. And do you know how expensive a funeral is? And do you want your wife to have to support the kids on her own?

    All that said, not smoking is a great thing, but smoke if it makes you happy. Seriously, why we should begrudge someone having a bad habit that makes them happy, I don’t know. You can not smoke all you want. You’ll still die one day. And if smoking can get you through the stress, well, then maybe it is worth the rest of it.

    Seriously, I don’t know why anyone cares whether I do or not either, but some people seem to get their rod in a knot over it. And these statements aren’t off the cuff either — this isn’t my first time quitting. Been there, done that. But this time I’m not going back. I just won’t give up again. It’d all be for naught if I did, and THAT would be … terrible. 🙂

  7. I’m thrilled to hear that you and Falcon have quit smoking, but sorry to hear that you aren’t experiencing any of the supposed “benefits” from quitting.

    I have to say though, for whatever your reasons may be, I’m sure your children will thank you down the road, if anything else.

    My Mom still smokes. I think she’ll smoke until she dies, and honestly, I truly believe she does it for spite. Growing up, I’d ask if she could refrain from smoking for the 15 minute drive home because it the smell made me quite nauseous, and gave me headaches (still does), and she wouldn’t. She’d crack the window, say that was enough, and some how smoke two cigarettes on the trip home.

    I sort of understand — my wife probably even more — smoking out of spite. Heh.

    My Dad quit smoking finally last spring after having a heart attack at 50. He said he had wanted to for years, but never really had a strong motivation of something to kick him in the ass. I’m thrilled he quit, but secretly, I have to admit, I felt a little crushed to know I wasn’t reason enough.

    I’ve wished for them to quit for as early as I can remember. Not because my teachers told us smoking was bad for you, or because they recommended we ask them to, but because it was disgusting, and I didn’t want to be near them when they smoked. It made me sick, and gave me bad headaches. We’d be playing Nintendo when we were little, and Dad would come in to join us after finishing a smoke, and I would have to leave. He’d ask why… I always told him I didn’t feel like playing anymore, and wanted to read instead.

    To each their own, and that’s just my two cents.

    Regardless, I’m happy for you and your decision.

    Well, thank you sweetie. 🙂

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