Dear classmate who says his smoking habit doesn’t affect others,
I don’t care that you smoke. I don’t care how much you smoke. I don’t care what you smoke. I don’t even care that you’re smoking on a smoke-free campus as long as you don’t do it next to Starbucks because that’s where I spend a big chunk of my time.
Here’s what I do care about: You have the entire class open to you, you can sit anywhere, and you choose to sit beside me. I know you were just outside smoking cigarettes because I just walked by you ten minutes ago. I’m not going to say anything, because I’m not a d*ck, like you. So I’ll get up, pretend to go to the bathroom, and come back in five minutes and sit literally anywhere that I don’t have to breathe your poison.
You don’t understand, obviously, that you smell like you just walked through a Marboro party. I don’t need you to understand. It’s not my job to teach you about common decency and basic hygeine. I grew up with – and around – smokers, I know how that smell can penetrate through clothes and hair without you realizing it. If you don’t care how your clothes smell, I don’t care, but I don’t want to sit next to you. As a matter of fact, I won’t sit next to you.
I did not move because you’re an obnoxious Trump supporter, even though that’s what you told the guy who always sits next to you. And when I decided to say something, because I’m tired of listening to you blabber on like a moron, I definitely didn’t need you to tell me that your smoking habit doesn’t affect me and I should just ignore it. I have ignored it. For weeks, I have ignored the smell you carry with you into this class and for what? So you can be comfortable and I can’t? Not anymore.
I moved seats because you have a disgusting habit that affects me every time you come into class after chain-smoking for an hour. You get to sit on the other side of the room cheerily spouting nonsense about politics while my chest protests every inhalation, while I’m enduring an excruciating headache that I can’t do anything about because the damage has already been done…
But your smoking habit doesn’t affect me?
That’s all – Xx