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Friday, December 24, 2010

Smoker's Diary #3: Goodbye Photo Shoot and Hello Mango Tree

Photograph by Rob San Miguel (
Seoul 2008)
I just realized that I just reached my tenth day without smoking.  It is easier at work to forget about smoking because I am always busy.  In addition, the entire building is now a non-smoking zone.  Physically, the entire work environment is not conducive to smoking.  Oops! Looks like I just inadvertently gave non-smoking advocates additional proof that limiting places to smoke is an effective way of curbing smoking. But I digress. 
It is quite harder to forget smoking at home, at least in my case.  Home is a more relaxing environment.  I have my room all to myself and I have so much more freedom in my private domain.  I can also walk around my room shirtless; sadly, as a young man, smoking shirtless is one of the misleading images I got from art and fashion magazines. What lead me to believe that a bare chest, Levi’s jeans and cigarette smoke under a pale wall light on a veranda overlooking the city lights are sexy? Fortunately, our new house overlooks a huge mango tree, definitely an anti-cosmopolitan image.  I have never seen a black and white photo shoot next to a mango tree, a banana tree perhaps, yes but never a mango tree. 
Anyway, a few days ago, I cleaned my cabinet and shelves and threw away all my secret cigarette stash.  I found enough to make a half pack.  I used to put 2 to 6 sticks hidden somewhere my room. I put those ages ago so I only have a sketchy idea where the cigarettes are.  Back then, it was a comforting thought that whatever happened, somewhere in the galaxy called my “room,” relief was just a search away (a clear sign of addiction). If ever I ran out of cigarettes in the middle of the night, I would just ransack every nook and cranny of my room and I would find one or two sticks. This was very useful during my heavy smoking days, especially past midnight and no stores were open.  At present, my room is a desert devoid of the once enticing nicotine, and my second floor veranda will never accommodate another make believe Dolce and Gabbana black and white photo shoot complete with cigarette smoke billowing up the stars. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, still coughing, but not as much as before, 9, and 10.

P.S. I am also proud to say that I can be with a group of smokers and still not smoke. I attended three parties this week with much smoking involved; although I have to say that I always have to fight the temptation, and for how long, I do not know, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10...

Next: Smoker's Diary #4

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