Wednesday, May 2, 2007

A Lambasting Reader

I received a lambasting email today about my smoking habit. They said I was using "government money" (my disability is funded mostly by MY TAX DOLLARS I paid into the system working for decades) to support my smoking habit. WRONG! My proceeds from the advertisements on this blog easily cover the $1 dollar a day, one pack a day habit I have. At first, I grew angry and defensive, but my rational side overcame my rashness when replying. They called me a burden on the health system.

"Statistically, you are more likely to die in a car accident if you drive a lot than I am to die of complications from smoking," I replied. "I rarely drive my car and can go weeks on one tank of gas. I like my odds better."

"My schizophrenia and the extremely expensive ($1500 dollars a month funded by Medicare part D) medications to subdue it also will cost much, much more than any smoking related costs over the course of my lifetime," I further added. "Should I off myself to save your valuable tax dollars? The only cure for schizophrenia is death."

It is well known in scholarly circles about the relationship of schizophrenia and other mental illnesses to smoking. There is something about nicotine that helps those of us that suffer with this disease to calm our symptoms. Don't believe me? Spend some quality time in the mental ward of a hospital as I have many times and you will find most that smoke. There are a lot of mentally ill people walking the halls with nicotine patches on their shoulders.

I will not do your homework for you, but if you are interested in the veracity of smoking as it relates to schizophrenia then just search Google. You will find countless scholarly studies that have been published in peer reviewed scientific journals about the link to smoking and mental illness.


Dorid said...

People can be such idiots.

I'd never ask Chewy to totally give up smoking, especially during a medication change, when he smokes a LOT to keep calm. I'd rather he be smoking than institutionalized or in jail, both of which can be very likely with my son.

People don't realize that you also give up some things to smoke, because you ARE on a limited income. These dolts are just looking for excuses. They're the same people who get upset because people who go to food pantries are fat (duh,they give you mostly rice and bread, what do you EXPECT?) and that the government uses tax money to EDUCATE people (so they WON'T be on public assistance all their lives)

These people lead LITTLE LIVES... just be glad that you're smarter than they are. ;)

Will said...

A pack of smokes costs $1 where you live? Man, Alabama has it good - in Toronto, a pack costs somewhere around $10...! It may even be more nowadays, I got out just as the prices his that crazy two-digit mark.

Trying2BMe said...

All I can say is TO HELL WITH THEM! Until you've walked a mile, don't say a damn word! And if this person is so damn perfect, then pat him/her on the back... some of us aren't so damn lucky!

Andrew said...


I smoke little cigars and the brand I smoke is $1.09 with tax for a pack of twenty. Cigarettes here cost around $2.18 for the cheapest varieties.

PipeTobacco said...


Ignore the naysayers. Do things you enjoy in life that make you happy.

Keep in mind, however, the even more economical form of tobacco indulgence... pipe tobacco and pipe smoking!!!


Amanda said...

Better cigs than drink. Some people need to write down "Live and let live" about 1000 times, and then go get a life.

Tory said...

Some people are so small minded. you have to have some pleasure in life.
Just ignore these ignorant people, andrew, it's not even worth getting upset about.

Melanie said...

there are heaps of people out there who approach every situation with this mindset: "What would *I* do in that situation?"

And then, they judge you based upon whether or not you would do things the way that they would.

This point of view is so intensely constricted, it's idiotic. How can these people assume that they would act a certain way if in someone else's shoes? They've never been there, and their whole "Well, *I* would do *this*" perspective shows that they lack the empathy and compassion to effectively imagine themselves in those other shoes.

They're not equipped to be making assumptions about other people's choices. Few of us are. And if you think you're one of the ones who *is* equipped to judge the lives of others, odds are you're the *least* equipped, I'd bet.

Screw 'em. If you haven't walked a mile in the shoes, and if you don't have anything useful to offer, then STFU.

La Bee-yotch said...

dear andrew--
some people have nothing better to do than go to the blogs of people they don't know and spout off self-righteously about things they know nothing about. you were wise not to let this person get under your skin. rest assured that this person's issue is really with him or herself, not you--you were a convenient target for an arrow that otherwise would have been turned on him or herself. furthermore, it was very interesting that this person assumed that, just because you are mentally ill, you must be living off of government dollars. you don't talk about where your money comes from, or at least what i've read of your blog doesn't. it's no one's business.

Patty said...

I always find it funny when someone feels the need to point out that smoking is bad for you. Usually it's someone who has their own bad habits, ie not eating healthy or too much etc.

Moonlink said...

Andrew, the individual who lambasted you is the type of person who kicks dogs, and who pinches babies. That type of malcious criticism is meant to demean, to anger, and to hurt its recipient. It's not constructive criticism. It's abusive.

No amount of reasoning or logical communication will change that person's mind, because the intent of that person is to wound, and to inflame. Block that individual.

Terri said...

I would have encouraged you to write a scathing email back to that uninformed nasty person. You didn't have to be nice but there you went again, being Andrew, the one we all love to read! You will get a lot further with someone (whether you see the results or not) by being concise and polite so you probably did the right thing.


Screw them.
I smoke and I shouldn't. I shouldn't "spend" the hard earned money that my husband provides for this single income family of 5. I should spend the money on my kids college tuition versus buying a new pack every other day..but I do. It's my vice, and it's good to have a vice that only I can be involved in.
Try not to internalize everything this particular letter writer said..ignore it. You know what you need, and as someone else said here on the comments field, better smokes than drinks..
Hang in there.
Take a REALLY long drag off that smoke and poopoo the moron as you inhale the warmth that cigarettes provide for you.

Gina said...

Hi Andrew- Gee I can understand your irritation! Regardless of the beneficial or desired effect, it remains old news that smoking is hazardous to your health. These are choices that you as an adult knowingly make, and it is entirely your owm business. You don't need people berating you. Life's rough enough without the stinkin debates and guilt trips... tax dollars is always a good one.....In the world we are stuck dealing with difficult and challanging personalities... however here on the internet you gotta choice! Peace.