Teenager Finally Broken Of Non-Smoking Habit
For years, high school student and aspiring journalist Tim Jensen had been restively convinced that cigarette smoking was harmful to the lungs, offensive to nearby non-smokers and the cause of bad breath, smelly clothes and a decline in appearance. It was only until recently, during what witnesses called "a sweet-ass kegger," did Jensen realize that smoking was a "fun" and "cool" activity to join in with his peers.
"It took a long time, and we thought that he'd never quit not smoking," said friend and editor of the high school paper Chen Yuan, "but after watching the writers, editors, and photographers leave the press room to take smoke break after smoke break, plus all those parties at houses of friends with idle parents, Tim finally realized that he was killing his social life by not having a fag every once in awhile."
Though smoking has been proven to be dangerous to one's health, Jensen has also realized that it's not just unhealthy, but also rebellious, relaxing, sometimes stylish, and always devoid of any real benefits, making it the perfect activity for young adults.
"You'd never believe how hard it is to break into the habit after years of health class, gym, and basically everyone telling you that 'it's so disgusting, it's so wrong, don't even get started'," said Jensen. "But once you catch that first buzz and realize that people begin to like you more, it's not that bad. To really get into the habit, you just need a support group of friends that smoke, all of whom have once struggled with the problem of believing in all those years of Surgeon General's Warnings, indisputable data, and stained teeth – that's the only way you're ever going to commit."
Jensen regrets not having joined his colleagues on the many sojourns to the back of the school where they hide behind the dumpster in sub-zero temperatures and distribute "squares" (slang for cigarettes), find a lighter or pack of matches taken from Bob Evans, and smoke defiantly, only to hide their breath from suspicious teachers and administrators upon re-entering the building. Keggers and Denny's runs after midnight, admits Jensen, would all have been much better if he'd established a disciplined smoking routine.
"I wonder how many parties I missed because I didn't want to leave with my clothes tainted with that stale smell that makes me think of my Grandpa's house," lamented Jensen. "Grandpa died of emphysema ten years ago at the age of 70 or something, so now that smell is makes me kind of nostalgic, and I think I've matured enough to finally follow the examples set by my hard-working and all-American family."
Friends, colleagues and siblings alike, have expressed support for Jensen's abrupt lifestyle change by bumming him cigarettes and encouraging his habit in other ways. Jensen has even become a source of inspiration to others who have been mislead about the benefits of puffing.
"I used to think that smoking was so disgusting and something that only dirty old men and witches did," said Jensen's kid brother Mike, 11. "After I saw that pack of cigarettes on Tim's dresser, though, I can't wait to grow up and do the same things that he does like listen to the Melvins, watch movies like Pulp Fiction and Emmanuelle one through four, smoke, and do all that grown-up stuff."
With defiance and in support of his brother, little Mike further stated, "Shit."
The future remains uncertain for Jensen, and whether or not he can maintain his new discipline and hide it from his parents remains to be seen.
"Holy shit, man, that party was awesome," said Yuan, reminiscing about the kegger last weekend at which Jensen began smoking, "and I wouldn't have been surprised if Tim had smoked crack that night – we were all pretty blotto. Still, this is just the beginning and we can only hope that, with the help of friends and the inherent coolness of smoking, that Tim will stay strong and prove himself."