In honour of Weedless Wednesday, I’m going to rant about smoking. There are pretty much few places left which are still smoky (and unbearable for us holier-than-thou non smokers). But there is still one place yet to become smoke free.
Yeah, yeah, chuck something at me for even mentioning it. Apparently the Ontario government refuses to go into people’s domestic space and ban cigarettes in apartments.
Take note I speak from experience: from living for years in a smoke infested hellhole.
Yes, that lovely Wolfville apartment which I called home for four years was nothing but a hot box for the tenants downstairs that smoked various substances I couldn’t identify.
I believe that a man’s/woman’s castle is a special place, a private place, a spot that should be kept away from the nanny state.
However, when someone’s rights infringes on someone else’s, something needs to be done.
Most politicians probably haven’t been in a slum apartment for years thanks to their posh pay, so I understand that they don’t understand how lower income people can’t decide to move on a whim.
Conscious of my toxic air, I tried to keep my windows open as often as possible, and my bathroom door shut (that was the main entry point for the smoke), but when it was the middle of January, opening the windows wasn’t exactly an option since they were frozen shut with three inches of ice and snow. And in the summer, the tenants downstairs used to have their windows open, which meant the smoke came up and in my window anyway.
Going to, you know, poopsky meant opening the bathroom door and spraying before I even sat down on the cold seat. Bathing meant soaking in a tub with lavender bubbles… and trying not to choke on the disgusting smoke coming up from the downstairs apartment via the ventilation fan that ventilated into my apartment.
Move. Sure. When you don’t have a car, moving is an easy peasy option that costs nothing.
Also, when you pay $340 bucks a month for rent, where are you going to find a safe, healthy apartment for a similar price?
Thanks to the ongoing exposure to second hand smoke of dubious origins, I had a perpetual cough and hack. I could hawk like an old man, I kid you not.
In fact, I went through a parade of puffers and nose sprays until my hawk finally disappeared. I still have a touch of it, but nothing like I used to have. (I no longer sound like an 80 year-old smoker.)
In the end, I know apartments are sacred and we as tenants should be allowed to do what we want in them. However, when our rights impinge on others’ rights, we no longer deserve to party hardy.
If I play my music until my neighbour’s windows begin vibrating in time with my subwoofer, they have the right to call the police.
Making apartment buildings smoke free only makes good sense. If tenants smoke, they should have an area outside, away from windows, where they can enjoy their stink sticks and ruin their own health, not mine.
That’s my smoking rant. Have a nice day.
Oh, P.S. I live in a house now. Eff you apartment living. Eff you.