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No, You Cannot Borrow a Cigarette

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As someone who smokes I am aware that I annoy a copious amount of people on a daily basis, whether it's because I unintentionally get smoke in their face, trust me I've been coughed at countless times despite the fact the person who is offended it stood about 20 foot behind me, or because I'm getting in their way as I try to light a ciggie in a crowded high street, and then there are those who just generally look down on me because of the dirty disgusting habit that they hate.

Yes I am aware that it is dirty and disgusting but at the same time I am addicted, in the same way that alcoholics are addicted to drinking or crack addicts are addicted to crack, and in most cases in the same way I'm addicted to eating like the pasty scoffing moaners who look down on me as they hastily try to make their way to Greggs only to be blocked by me and my annoying craving.

However us smokers also have a number of hates when it comes to other smokers, yes we get annoyed by the fact that non-smokers continue to moan about the smell even though we are stood outside huddled amongst some questionable people trying to get some warmth whilst the British weather hammers us with rain, wind, snow or all three at any given time. But that aside the biggest hate I find that comes with being a smoker is the exasperating question that is regularly asked "can you lend me a cigarette?"

Well quite frankly the answer to that question is no. It seems that other smokers who may have left theirs at home, can't afford to buy any or just don't want to smoke their last one quite yet, feel that as a fellow smoker I have a moral obligation to give them a cigarette because I can feel their pain. Yes I can feel your pain and I myself have felt it, but I wouldn't approach someone who is minding their own business in the street and ask for one of their fags, and then hurl abuse at them when they say they can't give you one.

Firstly I would not be lending said cigarette as I will probably never see you again in my life, therefore you will not be giving me one back in the foreseeable future, so what you really want to know is can you have a cigarette. The answer by the way is still no. Also at about £7 a pop for 20 fags that works out as 35p for one, which at the moment is frankly too much money to waste on someone I do not know.

This apparent 'moral obligation' that should be shared amongst smokers where the giving of cigarettes to strangers should be done freely does not apply to anything else though. For example I am a human, which mean I need food and water to survive and on many occasions I have been starving whilst walking past people eating, yet if I was to approach someone and ask them for a chip, a bite of their sandwich or a sip of their drink I would probably be looked at in disgust and given abuse in the same way I'm given abuse when I refuse to give someone a fag, because this is deemed as socially unacceptable, unlike the handing out of cigarettes.

This then brings me to the biggest annoyance of a smoker, the social smoker. Yes we have all encountered them at some point during our smoking life, a non-smoker who has had too much to drink and thinks they will look 'cool' with a ciggie hanging out of their mouth. Now we all had to start smoking somewhere, which probably happened when a friend who smokes gave us a fag, but these people don't smoke, won't smoke and probably look down on smokers during the daytime when they are stone cold sober. They also haven't ran out of fags on their night out prompting them to ask to have one of yours because they never brought any with them. This everyone is the most annoying, either you smoke or you don't, you cannot just decided to smoke on a whim on a night out and take everyone else's.

So next time you get annoyed whilst looking at a smoker, just stop and think about how annoyed they are at other smokers, social smokers and those who look down on them, because they are probably more annoyed than you, which is most likely the reason why they need a fag in the first place.

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