The Ethics of Smoking

on Tuesday, 12 October 2004
I personally do not smoke. I have nothing against smokers in general as I have friends who smoke too. What I despise are inconsiderate smokers. People who believe they have a right to smoke, but deny others the right to breathe smoke-free air.

If you want to waste $$$ on packs and packs of cigarettes, that's fine by me, since it helps the economy. If you want to risk a shorter lifespan, that's fine by me also, since our world is over-crowded anyway. If you want potentially huge medical bills in your waning years, that's also fine by me, since it's not my problem. If you want to be a litterbug and throw all your cigarette packs and butts all over the country, that's fine by me too, because I'm not a law enforcer and can't stop you.

What I can't stand is that some of them simply love to smoke in small cramped spaces. It's either the toilet, the area outside the toilet, fire escapes or stairways, or even corridors. I mean, it's fine if it's a rarely visited restroom, pathway, or stairway, where you won't violate the breathing space of others. It's not a question of legality, but of morality. If they can't have respect for people who do not smoke, I don't see why they deserve any respect. Everytime I pass by the corridor or enter the toilet at my workplace, and I smell smoke; I simply curse the fellow in the next office (who's the only inconsiderate one causing the air pollution on the entire floor).

I'll have even lower respect for them if they dare complain about any smells of urine or garbage. What? They can pollute the air but others can't? It's mutual respect. Do not do unto others what you do not want done unto you.

I know I know, I'm just ranting. But I really really hate it when my shirt has to smell of smoke simply because some inconsiderate moron finds it entertaining to stand or sit inside the toilet to smoke. Not to mention the fact that these same fellows find it all right to dump the cigarette butts and ashes on the floor, in the urinal, the sink, or wherever they happen to be standing. While not having very laudable ethics, at least I know I'm not at the bottom.


on Friday, 8 October 2004
My girlfriend is heading back to her hometown again for the weekend. And I'm torn between two different feelings.

First, due to my long working hours, I truly, truly appreciate any time that I can have feeling bored. I never knew being bored and not knowing what to do can feel so extremely wonderful. Sigh, busy busy busy. Hence, I simply love the weekends. Except when I have to work on Sundays of course. On such days, I just want to be left alone and doing whatever I feel like doing (including nothing of course).

But then again, I kinda miss her and wished she could be here next to me. Even though I'd rather be alone. I want to spend the time I have with her. Yet, I still enjoy spending the time alone.

Ah, longing. What art thou?

Maybe I should find a job with shorter hours...


on Tuesday, 5 October 2004
I meant to post this a couple of weeks ago but I kinda got sidetracked by other stuff. But now I shall try to put old thoughts into works.

I blogged about religion and the belief system quite a while back and have been struggling with it since. Funny. As was mentioned by a reader, the more we try to believe, the more mental obstacles we unconsciously put into place. Although I follow my girlfriend to church (well, mostly quite reluctantly), I find it difficult to put faith into something.

But last month, I had this weird experience. There was this guest speaker invited to talk about personal experience and bearing witness to God. Guest speakers come once in a while and they always invite non-Christians to affirm their belief or to join the faith. Sometimes I feel really touched and wanted to join in voicing out. Yet always, I just seem to hold back. Old uncertainties and questions I suppose.

At the end of it, during the silent prayers period that concludes an assembly, I prayed. I think that's the first time I've truly, really, prayed. Quoting Morgan Freeman in Bruce Almighty: "Now that's a prayer." :P Anway, I prayed that the Lord give me a sign, a sign that I should be here (read: church), and be able to find answers to my questions. I suppose I was (am?) in sort of a spiritual crisis.

Right after that prayer, an aunty (a really really friendly woman in the church) came and asked if I wanted to join in a class of introductory lessons on the faith. Coincidence? Divine intervention? I don't know, and perhaps will never know. But something clicked in my head. I just felt more open somehow, more accepting. A sudden moment of clarity and lucidity if you will.

And during that first lesson... a lot of answers came from the pastor's words and from the implications my mind made. All of a sudden, things seem so clear now. It's now up to me what to make of it.