Smoker and Antismoker: Natural and Artificial

A recent video by Scott Adams featured a guest who opened by saying:

“The coronavirus is going to push us to do things we should probably already be doing as a society. Firstly we do need to practise higher and higher levels of hygiene in this interconnected world. Who doesn’t want to be cleaner all the time. Everybody I’ve ever met wants to be cleaner. Everybody admires people who are cleaner than them..Everyone likes going to places that are super-clean.”

Listening to this, I found myself completely disagreeing with everything he said. And also thinking that the guy was almost certainly a virulent antismoker.

Aren’t antismokers obsessed with hygiene? Don’t they want everything to be cleaner? Don’t they want everything to be super-clean?

Before the 2011 Spanish smoking ban, the Barcelona district of Esplugues de Llobregat had numerous smoking bars and a handful of non-smoking bars. All the non-smoking bars were super-clean. And they were also soulless. It was the quirky little smoking bars that had soul, and that I loved to spend time in.

I don’t like super-clean places. And I don’t like super-clean people. I like people that have lived a bit, and places that have been lived in, that are a bit worn, a bit faded, a bit aged. I like bars that have a dog curled up in the doorway, and faded posters on the walls, and half-empty ashtrays. I’m instantly at home in those kinds of places. And never at home in super-clean places where I never feel welcome, never feel accepted, because super-cleanliness is highly demanding, and highly unforgiving.

And why should we “practise higher and higher levels of hygiene in this interconnected world”? The interconnectedness is largely electronic, and it allows us to live disconnected lives. When I was working as a computer software engineer, I used to mostly work at home. How much more disconnected can you get? If anything, the more we’re electronically connected, and physically disconnected, the less the need for higher levels of cleanliness and hygiene.

It all reminded me of Dr W ranting about the “filthy, filthy, filthy” habit of smoking. Perhaps the real divide between smokers and antismokers is between the dirty and the clean. The dirty (in the sense of ‘getting down and dirty’) is always much more alluring than the uptight super-clean.

And super-clean people must see dirt everywhere. After all, the natural world is essentially a dirty world. It’s covered in mud and soil and sand and dust. A pristine white beach is made up of a graveyard of broken shells, and the blue sea beyond it is laden with salt and sand and countless other chemicals. The natural world is an unclean world. And super-clean, hygienic places are artificial places, and unnatural places.

So the difference between smokers and antismokers is the difference between the natural and the artificial. And it takes a lot of work to keep places artificially clean. And no work at all to make them natural.

Just passing thoughts prompted by something some guy said.

About Frank Davis

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14 Responses to Smoker and Antismoker: Natural and Artificial

  1. Mark Jarratt says:

    Neurotic anti-tobacco zealots cloak themselves in the sanctimonious garb of “public health” but in actuality inflict their soulless socially divisive concepts of bourgeois purity on everyone else, whether you consent, or like it or not. The full force of law and extortionate taxes are used to engineer conformity. Smoking is healthier than totalitarianism. It cost me AUD71 today for 50 debased cigarettes in a shouty ugly drab propaganda pack. How can we stop these illiberal hysterical bullies? I hope they all get COVID-19 so they cease this endless meddling in the lives of others. 😷

    • Timbotoo says:

      If I were a smoker, I would definitely use a silver cigarette case. Very James Bondy and a f.u. to the dreadful packs.

      • Mark Jarratt says:

        I have a silver cigarette case from Kununurra, in the remote north west of Western Australia. It features a rather fetching sunset scene with boab trees, look like bottles, sometimes hollowed out for use as temporary prisons, similar to outdoor smoking ghettos but enclosed…

  2. Roobeedoo2 says:

    Hi Frank :D

    Cade Fon Apollyon and I remote viewed a three part series together last night on the mechanics of weather phenomenon. No mention of CO2 or ‘Climate Change’, and the only thing man-made are the experiments presented…

    Temperature is the third in the series (Water and Wind being the first and second), and dust features prominently in it.

  3. Rose says:

    Its an interesting concept, always being super clean, how would you develop any immunity to the world?
    If you have no immunity to even ordinary things , I can only assume that you would appear briefly as a very clean, very short lived spark.

    The skin microbiome
    2011

    “The skin is an ecosystem composed of 1.8 m2 of diverse habitats with an abundance of folds, invaginations and specialized niches that support a wide range of microorganisms. The primary role of the skin is to serve as a physical barrier, protecting our bodies from potential assault by foreign organisms or toxic substances.”

    “As we describe, many of these microorganisms are harmless and in some cases provide vital functions that the human genome has not evolved. Symbiotic microorganisms occupy a wide range of skin niches and protect against invasion by more pathogenic or harmful organisms. These microorganisms may also have a role in educating the billions of T cells that are found in the skin, priming them to respond to similarly marked pathogenic cousins.”
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3535073/

    Everything in moderation.

    • Frank Davis says:

      It seems to me that anything that is encased with dirt (or thirdhand smoke) is wearing a suit of armour. Strip off that armour, and it becomes relatively defenceless.

      Same applies with a layer of skin micro-organisms. What if some of these ate viruses? I don’t see why they shouldn’t. If you super-clean yourself you will strip off not only a protective layer of dirt, but also a defensive army of micro-organisms. So you’ll be even more defenceless.

      • Rose says:

        Frank, I have always liked the idea that I am like a world with it’s own tiny population so small that I would be impossibly huge for them to even recognise as being alive, and they are so microscopic I can’t see them and would’nt even know that they were there unless I’d been told.

        It’s like having your own personal army, so you have to be careful with the soap.
        I don’t think I count dirt as an ally though and thirdhand smoke, should such a thing exist has at least been sterilised.

  4. Joe L. says:

    Our digestive systems are a diverse microbiome, hosting a variety of bacteria and other microorganisms. These organisms live in symbiosis with us, their hosts. Many people still don’t realize this, and if they did, they’d probably freak out because it’s “disgusting.”

    There are a growing number of researchers who believe that our gut flora is directly related to our health. If our flora levels are out of balance, we are at an increased risk of illness. From my personl experience, I believe this is the case. When I was a child, I was a bit sickly. My pediatrician would prescribe various members of the penicillin family for every case of sinus infection, ear infection, bronchitis, etc. Antibiotics don’t discriminate between “good” and “bad” bacteria.

    As a young adolescent, my mother stopped taking me to the doctor for every minor malady (and I also started smoking tobacco). At the age of 19, my distrust of the medical-industrial complex really began to take shape. I vowed I would not take antibiotics unless I was too unwell to perform necessary tasks for survival. Twenty years have passed, and I have not taken a single antibiotic since. I have smoked approximately a pack of cigarettes a day over this time, and I rarely get sick. But when I do get sick, I give my immune system an opportunity to do its job. Health nuts like to talk about the need for regular physical exercise, but then they take antibiotics for a minor case of bronchitis rather than letting their immune system get some exercise of its own. I am far healthier as a middle-aged smoker who doesn’t take antibiotics than I was as a young non-smoker who was almost constantly taking antibiotics.

    People around me seem to get sick far more frequently than I do. They all tend to be non-smokers who visit their doctors regularly. Society has been brainwashed into believing we should live in a “clean,” sterile, germ-free, smoke-free world, but I believe they are actually doing more harm to themselves. Just like our lungs are intended to filter and process what we inhale, our immune systems are meant to fight harmful microorganisms. Why should we prevent them from doing their jobs? While some of my relatively good health might be attributable to the bactericidal, fungicidal and viricidal properties of tobacco smoke, I believe it is mostly due to the fact that my immune system is “in shape” and my intestinal flora is healthy and balanced, having not been decimated by antibiotics in two decades.

  5. Lepercolonist says:

    These clean ‘freaks’ have an obsession-compulsive disorder. They need therapy. As do most anti-smokers.

  6. Саня says:

    There was one History Documentary on my TV just now, calls Nazi Victory: The Post-War Plan. So similar to this days health freaks. They only missed global warming, all the rest was there. Not even one generation passed and again all the same.

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