Friday, December 9, 2011

Think YOU'RE tough?

from the April 8, 2010 issue of the County Journal...

“Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.”

At some point in my life I thought this was the post office motto, but Google has approximately 8 million (give or take a few) people who can’t wait to tell you that this isn’t the motto of the Post Office at all, but instead a Greek description of the Persian Post Office, which apparently ran a very tight ship way back in 500 BC, immortalized by the Persian Historian Herodotus, who coined the above phrase.


As tough as these Persians were though, I don’t think they can hold a candle to the new tough guy (or girl), the TOBACCO SMOKER.

The TOBACCO SMOKER endures the rhetoric of the Government (while paying crazy-high taxes on each pack to it) for the privilege of continuing to be smacked down by laws saying where they can smoke and blamed for high insurance rates. They also must deal with the laid-upon-them guilt of inflicting others with secondhand smoke.

The TOBACCO SMOKER is directly in the cross-hairs of the Surgeon General, who smugly informs them that smoking could cause health problems. Oh yeah? Well, I think the Surgeon General could stand to lose some weight.

The TOBACCO SMOKER must go outside to smoke, says the collector of the crazy-high taxes. The TOBACCO SMOKER stands out in the elements, braving snow, rain, heat, gloom of night and other people that the TOBACCO SMOKER has nothing in common with save perhaps their brand of tobacco or their future oncologist.

The TOBACCO SMOKER is no longer welcome in diners, bowling alleys or pool rooms, places where they once were accepted, loved and encouraged. Instead they are banished to the outer regions and must stand by the back door, sometimes all alone, ashing into a coffee cup or (oh my!) on the ground, polluting the environment with the ashes we will all become eventually anyway.

And to them, this sacrifice for vice is worth it. I don’t smoke, I don’t plan to, I don’t want my kids to, but I admire the TOBACCO SMOKER’s committment to freedom in the face of such oppression.

Smoke ‘em if you got ‘em.

Darrell Teubner, Editor