Waiting To Exhale – In Vegas

Some people like to face life head-on. Me, I’m all for escape. Thus, dateline: Las Vegas. They say what happens here stays there, and that’s a good thing. After a hard day of shopping (me), poker (CE) and dining (both of us start diets anew on Monday…) we decided to head to the pool with our books yesterday afternoon. The CE found us a shady spot and we settled in – for about ten seconds, because that’s about how long it took the two guys sitting upwind from us to light a pair of cigars.

Sometimes a cigar IS just a cigar...but it's always gross!

Sometimes a cigar IS just a cigar...but it's always gross!

I always forget that Vegas is the last protected haven for smokers. I’m glad they have a place to go other than those sad little outdoor cubicles 150 feet away from everything and everybody. I wonder if the dimensions of those tiny spaces ever remind them of coffins.

In Vegas, however, they can light up with impunity, and light up they did. The CE said these guys looked like “old Mafiosos” and that, coupled with the fact that they were well within their rights to smoke, kept us in our seats. For about another ten seconds, during which time I wondered about the whole business of smoking.

The CE and I are of that generation that grew up taking (forced) Sunday drives in the back seats of our parents’ cars with the windows rolled up and the grown-ups puffing away in the front seat. The air was thick with smoke. Our eyes burned, our noses got stuffy and the combination of the back seat and the putrid fog of smoke invariably led to car-sickness, but if we made a “peep” (“And I don’t want to hear a peep!” was a common admonition back then) we were quickly reprimanded. Smoking was a right back then. Funny how things can change, isn’t it?

Ah, the good old days...

Ah, the good old days...

So I did a little research, but other than discovering that our Governator smokes a cigar each day to “relieve stress”, that our latest Nobel Laureate is or was a closet smoker and that Mr. Freud himself died of mouth cancer as a result of his tobacco addiction, there are apparently no definitive studies on why people smoke. The oral and anal theories persist but remain scientifically unproven.

arnold

obama

One quasi-scientific finding I discovered was a 1962 article in The Atlantic Monthly (www.theatlantic.com): “Smokers are consistently larger than the nonsmokers. They are taller, heavier, broader in the shoulders and hips, bigger in the size of the chest, leg, and hand…pure cigarette smokers are on the average more than four pounds heavier than the nonsmokers, the pure pipe smokers more than six pounds heavier, with the pure cigar smokers averaging an amazing ten pounds more in body weight than the abstainers.”

These guys by the pool definitely outweighed us, even after the effects of three days of gluttony – I mean, fine dining. Maybe I should have told them, but we chose, instead, to leave. After all, it was time to go eat. Again. Great to be here, but as they say, it’s all smoke and mirrors, and we won’t mind leaving the smoke behind.

About polloplayer

Empty nester searching for meaning of life through the occasional chicken epiphany.
This entry was posted in Annoyances of Life, Travel and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Waiting To Exhale – In Vegas

  1. pollo amiga says:

    I think you did the smart thing by leaving, rather than the So Cal thing of glaring at them expecting they would be shamed into snuffing the cigarettes. Might have been you they snuffed instead. We watched “Casino” last night with Robt De Niro and Joe Pesci and I’d say that you are lucky to be alive just sitting near Mafioso looking characters in that town.

  2. Katherine Gunther says:

    Wow – what a fabulous article/blog entry. It seems wrong to say your fabulous writing is “wasted” on the chicken blog, but, well, let’s just say that I wish everyone was reading your writing on the chicken blog.

  3. Poulet de' Emperor von Vegas Elvis says:

    Otgher than the stogie episode, it was a fine trip and this ol’ Emperor could not have been more thrilled to have spend 4 days wining and dining with the SB Chicken Queen. The little cluckers just had to make do on their own for a few days while we got away from the crushing responsibilities of tending to their every need. I mean, really, is it necessary to provide them with miniature sedan chair service from coop to enclosure three times a day? I see those gerbils getting mighty tired by day’s end.

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