Live the way you want, but recognize that there are other ways to live
Photo by David on Unsplash
Look at this girl. Isn?t she cool? She?s staring at you, but also not staring (she?s wearing sunglasses). Her hair looks neat, but also messy. Her body is relaxed. Her hand is relaxed. Her lips are relaxed. The smoke coming out of her mouth is relaxed. She?s in a state of ecstasy ? a state of ecstasy we all want. As she takes her ? judging by the amount of cigarette she has left ? seventh puff, dark nicotine rushes through her body and electrifies. And as we look at her, all we can think is that she?s pretty damn fucking cool.
Except for judgemental non-smokers. They don?t think smoking is cool; they think it?s disgusting. They believe that something so self-destructive and outside-of-self-destructive can?t be cool. Ignorance clouds their perception. Though, that?s not to say all non-smokers are ignorant ? just the ones that can?t accept smokers as real people.
The cool kids in high school smoked. The cool people in movies and TV shows smoke. If you were to write a story, a character who smokes would suggest that they?re cool. It makes them a little anti-social. It makes them look like they don?t give a fuck. Mark Manson?s The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck is a best-seller for the reason that not giving a fuck is cool. Smoking is a microcosm of not giving a fuck, which means it?s also a microcosm of coolness.
But nope, there are still assholes out there that can only see the world in one way. They never had a chance to smoke, so they judge others for their actions. They believe their way of living is the only way to live. They project their crooked egos onto the world and oppress smokers with their arrogance, when deep down inside, they are sad and lonely and in darkness. They tell themselves that they don?t smoke because they?re good people, but the truth is: no one wants to smoke with them.
Does that mean you should smoke? Fuck no. That shit is going to kill you. I could bring up the many many many studies that suggest how dangerous smoking is, but I won?t, because you already know. Your parents and teachers and other adults have taught you about how fucked up smoking cigarettes are since you were a child. But that doesn?t make smoking any less cool. Lots of self-destructive behaviors are cool. Cocaine-fuelled investment bankers, junkie jazz musicians, and whiskey-drinking writers are cool.
Why? Because self-destruction is fucking cool. Have you ever watched Fight Club? It?s one of the coolest movies ever, and self-destruction is what makes it cool. We watch the people fight, burn, and destroy each other. How cool.
?How to live?? they ask.
?Accept that smoking is cool, but then don?t smoke,? I say.
OK, I said enough about why smoking is cool. You don?t have to accept it, but if you do, that doesn?t mean you should smoke. You don?t have to do everything cool. Sometimes you have to make sacrifices ? like not smoking in exchange for a longer life.
Accepting that smoking is cool while choosing not to smoke is recognizing that there are other ways to live. You agree that your way of living isn?t the only way to live. You can look at smokers and accept them as real people with real feelings ? not disgusting creatures. Judgemental non-smokers, with their closed-minded souls, can?t take this. They can?t accept other ways to live, so they continue bullying smokers while believing they?re angelic angels.
I don?t smoke. I accept smokers. I think it?s cool. Well, not every smoker is a cool person. But the act of smoking is cool. Taking a drag from a cigarette, letting the darkness relax your body, then exhaling in tranquility is cool. I don?t live like that, but that?s okay. There are other ways to live.
Accept that smoking is cool, but then don?t smoke.