Well, I've gotta say that is the most responded post I've ever had on eBaum's. I guess I must have hit a central nerve of eBaumers. Thanks to everybody for your comments.
There were two themes running through the comments I received. One was "Quit while you can". The other was "I hate smoking but I love what it does". Those are exactly the kind of reactions I get at work. That's where I do most of my smoking, because it's more convenient, I won't do it around my kids, and, most importantly, my wife doesn't know. Or at least I don't think she does. I think she suspects, but she also knows that I work with smokers. Oh well.
I work with two very vocal former smokers who are shocked and almost angry that I started smoking. I even smoke the brand that both of them smoked, Marlboro Lights. Marlboro because everybody has them, and Lights because I figured they wouldn't be as bad for me or turn me off with the supposed "Full Flavor" effect. To me the "flavor" of a cigarette always seemed about as appealing as the flavor of a dog turd. But I digress.
These two women are constantly getting on me about smoking. One has gotten past the "OMG" phase and just gives me a hard time, the other always tells me that she is disappointed and I need to stop now. And you know what? I know they are right.
So what was my excuse to keep smoking once I started? Fucking Christmas. Yep, I lit up for the first time on Halloween, October 31. I stopped at the gas station on the way home from work, still in full costume as the Hulk, green face and everything, and bought a pack and a lighter. By the way, the 99 cent Bics that are about half as long as your thumb suck a lot of ass. If you can't hold it and light it with one hand, it's not worth it. Anyway, Thanksgiving was roughly 3 weeks later, and that period is the second most stressful time of year. I was committed to finishing the pack because I'm too cheap to throw away 17 cigarettes, and after a week I decided that I needed that 21st cig. So I bought another. And another. At that point, I knew that I would not be able to quit before Christmas, which is the most stressful time of the year. So I kept going.
Now Christmas is over and I have no excuse. The good news is that I have not had a Marlboro Light since December 24. The bad news is, I am now on my second pack of Djarum clove cigarettes. And you know what? I really, really like them.
More to come.