I believe I’ve shared my plight over smoke filtering through my apartment in the post ‘Drips and Drabs’ that without sounding too dramatic, is ruining my life. Last night the smell woke me at 2 am with a headache that 3 Extra Strength Excedrin couldn’t cure. I ended up, out of sheer desperation, hanging my head out the window.
An architect I know was kind enough to come over to see what can be done and it’s amazing what I’ve learned. Smoke does not come through plaster like I thought, only holes like heat vents and spaces on top or below a door; even through a light socket it can seep in. Apparently for a nominal fee one can caulk and put weather strips up and around that should help so there’s hope in sight I’m grateful to say, but this brings me to my theme of the day…
After having it compromised in my own home, air is something I’ve really become aware of. This morning for instance after all the rain we’ve had, it smelled so clean and fresh it felt as if I was running in Iowa. I took such deep breaths that I actually got dizzy. After sleeping in that stench it was exhilarating being outdoors forcing myself to come back in.
It made me conscious of the fact that we take clean air for granted.
Yesterday it had gotten so bad in the afternoon for the first time in my life I went and wrote at a Starbucks waiting in line for a free stool. How humbling watching someone take their sweet old time slurping their ‘Venti macchiato’ while steam was coming out of my ears. I hate writing in public. I need the peace of home to pen anything worthwhile, but I couldn’t stand the smell one more minute.
Right now I have every window open and I’m wearing my Barbour. It looks as though I’m constantly leaving.
I’ve lit so many scented candles you’d think I was conducting a seance.
I’m concerned if this problem continues my voice is going to change. Go ahead and laugh, but how would you feel if suddenly you started to sound like Tallulah Bankhead?
I know many people loathe Mayor Bloomberg for his smoke laws, me included, but you know what? I’m beginning to see his point. At first I felt, even as a nonsmoker, he was fucking with our Bill of Rights saying we can’t even smoke in the park anymore. How dare he, I thought? The irony is that’s a big open space yet the law states, as my next door neighbor who I’d like to string up by her Manolo knock-offs so reminded me in a snotty little note, ‘one can do whatever one wants in the privacy of one’s own home.’ Well, that’s fine and dandy but even if it’s making someone else sick?
Now I’m behind the Mayor all the way since from what I hear he’s trying to change that.
Don’t you get it, that one smoker out there reading this?
Secondhand smoke kills?
My friend Jackie, who I loved so much after never smoking a day in her life, died of lung cancer from merely being around it. Remember Dana Reeve married to Christopher Reeve? She used to work in the cafe downstairs; what a nice girl. She too died from secondhand smoke from all of the clubs she sang in throughout her singing career. The ‘no smoking in bars’ law didn’t change soon enough for her.
It’s not a myth folks.
Have you ever seen anyone die of lung cancer? It ain’t pretty I assure you.
As you can see I’m upset but I urge you today to be aware of the air that you breathe. It’s taken this situation of mine to jolt me into realizing how sacred it is.
I’m thinking of checking into a hotel so my lungs and I can get a good night’s sleep. I think I’ll bill my 2 neighbors.
The fuckers can split it.