The Stink

Last night as I was walking down the street around 6:30 with my family something occurred, and while it has happened countless times it seemed extra bad, super caustic and really prevalent last night. Ever since many of the bars in my neighborhood became smoke free all of the patrons have moved out onto the sidewalk to smoke. This creates huge pockets of smoke thick air for me and my family, my neighbors, their families, their dogs, the neighborhood birds to all walk through.

Lets be frank I don’t care about the birds walking through it… they can get their own blog.

In fairness and full disclosure I am an ex-smoker, and on a very rare occasion if I’ve had a bit much to drink there’s a possibility I could smoke a cigarette in a smoke friendly environment… but to literally crowd the streets smoking, flicking your butts every which way at people, at cars, blowing smoke directly in pedestrians faces and into other shops?

I’m talking about SE Milwaukie in Sellwood but I don’t think it’s an isolated occurrence. It isn’t like this is a street with only bars, we have coffee shops, antique stores, hair dressers, restaurants, card shops and so many things that out number the bars including doctors’ offices and the grocery store I was headed to.

The city is not your personal ash tray/smoking section. I’m sorry you can’t smoke in the bar anymore but get some manners.

22 Comments so far

  1. Whatever (unregistered) on September 8th, 2007 @ 5:09 pm

    Wow, maybe you should write a letter to the bar owners to let the smokers back inside.

    Or maybe you should write a petition to get the sand out of your vag.

    Or maybe you could realize you live in a city with other people who don’t care about you. It’s not their obligation to make you happy. You don’t like it? Cross the street.


  2. smash hits (unregistered) on September 8th, 2007 @ 5:22 pm

    I don’t smoke but personally, I don’t find it all that difficult to exhale when walking by a cloud of smoke…

    I do that often when confronted with things I’d rather not inhale, whether it be from a cigarette, exhaust pipe, charcoal grill, construction site, or someone who smells.

    I can’t help but think you have overstated this issue, but who knows, perhaps people where you live do… “crowd the streets smoking, flicking your butts every which way at people, at cars, blowing smoke directly in pedestrians faces and into other shops”

    If that is in case the reality… yes, smokers get some manners. And thanks for the tip, I’ll be sure to steer clear from the wild west that has become of Sellwood.

    I would also suggest that the people who feel high and mighty when it comes to smokers also get some manners, for I have seen people shoot glares or judgemental looks at people smoking in public, which comes across as ridiculous and ugly from my perspective.


  3. yuuuuuuuuck (unregistered) on September 8th, 2007 @ 9:29 pm

    WOW! Did I just read someone telling NON-SMOKERS to get manners? We’re not the ones tossing litter in the streets and out car windows every single day as if it’s A-OK. We’re not the ones filling other people’s lungs with toxins. We’re not the ones huddled around doorways in the rain like crack addicts. I know very few smokers who aren’t 100% owned by their addiction – an addiction of choice, by the way.

    People bitch when someone with body odor gets too close. Cigarettes are even worse! You don’t see it as stink because it’s yours, but it’s still stink.


  4. Aaron B. Hockley (unregistered) on September 8th, 2007 @ 9:33 pm

    I find it interesting that those who choose to do nothing but bitch about the authors are never man/woman enough to sign their comment with their real name.

    I don’t think Cami has a problem with smokers in general. I don’t. I really don’t care what you do to your body as long as it doesn’t affect me. But if the smokers are doing as she notes, littering the ground with butts and intentionally blowing smoke in others’ faces, then it’s the smokers who are the assholes, not the one who chooses to blog about it…


  5. Mr. Viddy (unregistered) on September 8th, 2007 @ 11:24 pm

    I think people need to quit crying about having to be around smokers. Boo hoo.


  6. Steve (unregistered) on September 9th, 2007 @ 1:29 am

    I’ll sign my real name… Well first anyways, cause I’m not a member and honestly I’m in the phonebook. Maybe you are too Aaron, but I prefer my privacy. I haven’t figured out how to join, but I’ll use my full first name if you help me out.

    I was in a bar tonight, and smoking is allowed inside. I for one do not smoke except for the occasional cigar and it’s usually inside my own home. I’m hardly addicted though.

    I have some comments to offer up…

    1. With non-smokers and their laws and ballot measures, many of the lawmakers you as non-smokers voted in caused smokers to move outdoors. Maybe it was the bars choice in Sellwood today, but it becomes law in 2009. That leaves a smokers’ house and public right of ways. As an ex-smoker, I’m sure you understand the addicting nature… So would you never leave your house again because you couldn’t smoke anywhere but home? You could say quit, but could I ask you to quit something you enjoy for life too?

    2. What do you feel we as citizens should have as manners Cami? I personally feel its bad manners to see a pet taking a dump in a public park. By your post it sounds like you have a dog, do you have your pet do its business only in your backyard? What about families with children who are loud. Should I make a stink because I feel annoyed and poisoned by the noise a 3 year old makes? I have a headache just from imagining that and wish to make 3 year olds stay out of public with their diaper filling, screaming lifestyle.

    3. Since you are an ex-smoker are you only going to bars now that allow smoking in that rare case you decide to pick up a cigarette? Or will you venture outside like everyone else?

    “It isn’t like this is a street with only bars, we have coffee shops, antique stores, hair dressers, restaurants, card shops and so many things that out number the bars including doctors’ offices and the grocery store I was headed to.” So where will you go to take a puff when you want to?

    Everything is relative Mr. Yuck. To you cigarettes may be worse, but your bad B.O. may not just annoy me but also make me puke.

    Hopefully someone can retort to this non-smoking asshole.


  7. jen (unregistered) on September 9th, 2007 @ 1:59 am

    I understand that smokers gotta smoke *somewhere* but I’d like them to not all crowd around the entrance. It’s annoying enough to walk through the cloud of smoke without having to find my way through a dozen people standing around right in front of the door.


  8. Jeff R (unregistered) on September 9th, 2007 @ 7:26 am

    Smokers are perhaps the rudest, most selfish members of our society, and their day is numbered. We need to keep raising taxes on them until they have no choice but to quit.


  9. Cami (unregistered) on September 9th, 2007 @ 8:44 am

    Hey Steve, thanks for using your name.

    Just so you know I think that many parts of societies “manners” could use some work, not just smokers. I find many other things to be annoyed about too. ;)

    Since you made it easy to answer to these points separately I will:

    “1”
    I didn’t and don’t think that smoking should be banned in bars, however it has been. That is a fact of life. And as you point out they are allowed to smoke in common spaces so they can smoke where ever they like, my issue was with their rudeness of crowding the sidewalk and FLICKING THEIR BUTTS onto the sidewalk, at cars and at people. I am not one to tell people to quit smoking. It is their choice. I would just like them to be more POLITE about it and perhaps not break the law by littering and flicking things at people and property… and if the process they aren’t blowing their smoke in my face, in my families and my neighbors faces all the better.

    “2”
    I don’t have a dog. I hate to see dogs take a dump too, all I can hope there is that their owners are responsible. There have been posts written on that topic on this site in the past as to what exactly that etiquette should entail, but not by me. I do have a child, who is not 3, is not loud and doesn’t fill diapers, but I think parents should try to keep their child under control in public and not allow them to be a menace to those around them, however there is a difference between a child being alive and someone littering and flicking butts and blowing smoke AT someone.

    “3”
    I mostly threw the info about my smoking in for the interest of disclosure, but I would not stand on a crowded sidewalk with people walking through and smoke. I would not flick my butts on the ground. I would not flick them at a person or a car.


  10. brewcaster (unregistered) on September 9th, 2007 @ 9:41 am

    This post is like an AOL chat room. Ugh….

    Haven’t we gone through this debate before?


  11. smash hits (unregistered) on September 9th, 2007 @ 9:43 am

    Why is using one’s name of such great importance? Mine is Nathan. How does that illustrate my perspective anymore or better than Smash Hits?

    Even more so, Aaron B Hockely your name means little more to me than say Kermit the Frog. It’s a comment on a blog. That’s it. Another citizen and their perspective… putting it out there.

    Now, should someone post in the same thread under multiple different names supporting points of view… that would be something to be alarmed about… but to toss out a comment anonymously does not strike me as some failed test of manhood or womanhood.

    Back on topic, Jeff R chimes in with a interesting charge, in saying that smokers are perhaps the… “most selfish members of our society”
    I’d like to point out some other people who may feel this way about specific others

    Bicyclists towards drivers – car owners towards SUV drivers – vegans towards meat eaters – anti-immigrants towards illegals – republicans towards democrats and vice versa – skiers towards snowboarders – oh, the list goes on.

    I guess what I’m trying to illustrate is that you don’t have to agree another’s personal choice to accept it or find a way to live in an enviroment with it. Smoking is a personal choice. People bemoan second hand smoke but reality is it is not likely to do you in. Not paying attention to your diet and weight is more likely going to affect your health than someone smoking a cigarette.


  12. Lady (unregistered) on September 9th, 2007 @ 11:13 am

    I don’t have an issue with walking by smokers but I think what really needs to be legislatively curtailed is wearing of scents. It is almost impossible for me to go to a movie, play, restaurant or shop without my allergies acting up because people wear perfume, scented deoderants, lotions, shampoos, conditioners, hair gels, lip gloss, etc. This is not a minor issue. Millions of us are allergic to this kind of thing and suffer hideous headaches as a result. Plus our dogs are also affected.


  13. Hunter (unregistered) on September 9th, 2007 @ 1:15 pm

    Banning Smoking in bars: Social Engineering at its best.
    Let your freedoms be taken away one by one.
    What’s next a tax on candy or red meat?


  14. Rob (unregistered) on September 9th, 2007 @ 4:07 pm

    “you don’t have to agree another’s personal choice to accept it or find a way to live in an enviroment with it”

    One word makes the above statement wrong: Cancer. Smoking is one person’s choice inflicted on everyone else in the room because cancer from second hand smoke is still cancer. Remember, we’re talking about public places here.

    I find it ironic that someone has to be 18 to poison their own lungs, but it’s fine for anyone else to do it for them (to them, really). My parents were chain smokers but I’ve never smoked a single cigarette. Hopefully this current generation of parents is a lot less ignorant than mine.

    Remove the poisons from the cigarettes and the conversation becomes one of the smell, which is still annoying but not a big deal.


  15. smash hits (unregistered) on September 9th, 2007 @ 5:23 pm

    Rob, you have taken my statement out of context and applied a scenario that was not part of the initial discussion nor part of the point of view I was presenting.

    You have joined the outdoors and rooms into the “public place.” I don’t see them as the same in regarding secondhand smoke.

    I do agree with you about secondhand smoke in a room and think you raise a good point, however I also think there are plenty of choices upon what “rooms” to enter thus making sceondhand smoke pretty easy to avoid.

    Smoking in rooms(bars) will be a moot point come 2009 in Oreogn anyhow…

    Now if you want to argue that people not be allowed to smoke in the public square (oh wait they already can’t in our Pioneer Square) Rather if you want to ban smoking on the public street… I would argue you would do more good for the health of the citizens making sure the clouds of diesel smoke, blue car smoke, and the factories pollution were reined in and kept in check.

    Furthermore I guess I am somewhat dismayed at these hords of smokers some people seem to be facing… last time I checked it seemed as if less and less people were smoking these days making this somewhat a non-issue. Ahem, as I first implied.


  16. Hugh Jass (unregistered) on September 9th, 2007 @ 9:08 pm

    I am all for using our real names!!


  17. mb (unregistered) on September 10th, 2007 @ 9:04 am

    I saw a woman – a very nice – attractive woman actually spit last week. Not like a bug flew into her mouth – but like just spit – like it was something she does all the time. I cant decide if that is more disgusting than cigarette butts all over the place or not.
    there are a lot of people who need manners. Take my “ball scratching, potty mouthed, fartin, burping co-workers” for instance. I work in an office in downtown portland and these are grown college educated men!
    Get some manners – everybody!


  18. Laureen (unregistered) on September 10th, 2007 @ 11:50 am

    I wanted to move to Portland OR because I live down town in Boston and I was sick of the assholes around here..but reading these comments make me realize that they are EVERYWHERE especially Portland OR..
    And..
    Smoking has been band inside anywhere in MA that has one or more employees for a LONG TIME.. Its not a big deal at all.


  19. Himself (unregistered) on September 10th, 2007 @ 12:16 pm

    “This post is like an AOL chat room. Ugh….”

    Correction… this *blog* is like an AOL chat room. Or MySpace, or LiveJournal.

    Metblogs is the adolescent voice of the Portland blogosphere. I don’t mean the bloggers here are actual adolescents. Just that their collective voice is immature.

    But it is what it is. Complaining about it doesn’t help.

    Occasionally, there’s some substance here, but mostly it’s just a social blog. Take it or leave it.


  20. Kai (unregistered) on September 12th, 2007 @ 9:02 am

    OMG Himself you are so totally right!


  21. Himself (unregistered) on September 12th, 2007 @ 10:16 am

    Heh heh heh. I’m, like, totally ROFLMAO.

    (Thanks for taking it in the spirit it was intended. I like you guys, really I do.)


  22. divebarwife (unregistered) on September 12th, 2007 @ 3:36 pm

    I take it!
    I do always tell people I’m only a grown-up Mon-Fri/7-4…and that even that’s questionable!



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