Smoking Back in the Day

Discussion in 'The Connoisseur' started by ArrowCollarMan, Nov 28, 2008.

  1. ArrowCollarMan

    ArrowCollarMan A-List Customer

    Messages:
    464
    Location:
    Los Angeles, Cal-i-forn-i-a
    I find it very strange and also funny to see people in old movies smoking everywhere like its no big deal. I've never seen that in my life, I can't even remember when people could smoke in restraunts. I remember watching a film from 1949 where a guy got beat up, got up and still had the cigarette in his mouth. Now thats commitment! Also just the lighting up everywhere, everywhere but church basically. What the heck?
    Having taken a liking to cigars myself, I've begun to notice smoking more around me and I can't imagine walking into a building smoking or sitting around at someone's house and casually lighting up without getting yelled at. I've begun to analyze it quite a bit taking into account everything bad I've heard about tobacco since I was in 1st grade. Its so strange how that wasn't even a big deal a long time ago.
     
  2. 52Styleline

    52Styleline A-List Customer

    Messages:
    316
    Location:
    SW WA
    It's difficult to understand the ways of an earlier time through the eyes of the current time period. I am old enough to remember when people smoked everywhere. A lighter and container of cigarettes were found on the coffee tables of many who didn't even smoke.

    In that time, there was an awareness that cigarettes were not good for you. Cigarettes were regularly referred to as coffin nails for example. The biggest difference was that people were not so eager to tell others how to live back then. In fact, folks would have wondered who died and made you king if you tried to lecture them on their personal choices. Todays nanny state and the feeling of some that they have an entitlement to tell others how to live evolved slowly, little by little. Although wearing seat belts (didn't even have them in cars back in the day) quiting smoking, and eating healthy foods are all good ideas...you would likely have received a fist in your nose had you tried to force people to change even as late as the 60's.

    These sort of cultural changes come in under the radar and even today I wonder how we let others have so much control over what we choose to do. It's better for people if they don't smoke, yet part of me objects to allowing others to tell me what to do with regard to issues that are a personal choice. The world of the 50's and 60's was freeer in so many ways than the world of today. Of course there were so many fewer of us then than are living now. Crowding together seems to result in more contol over what we are allowed to choose to do or not do.
     
  3. Sepe

    Sepe New in Town

    Messages:
    15
    Location:
    Espoo, Finland
    Woah, and I thought I was young. I do remember that when I was a kid, there were some cigarette billboards and there certainly was ashtrays in restaurants (the classier ones had separate smoking and non-smoking sections though). Heck, I even remember my granpa lighting up pretty much anywhere.

    Actually, smoking at workplaces, restaurants and bars wasn't prohibited by law here in Finland until 2007. I think there was some regulation about larger places having non-smoking sections too, but not sure about those.

    And yeah, the hazards of smoking were pretty well known, yeah, but how much were people told about them? At least the cigarette companies did tell people how cool it is to smoke ("More doctors smoke Camels than any other cigarette", anyone?).

    Personally, as a smoker, I do think it's good people can't light up anywhere, however, they're pushing it a bit too far. They just banned smoking at Helsinki Central Railway Station in any place with a ceiling or similar to it. And seeing as 90% of the platforms, technically outdoors, are covered by a glass ceiling... I feel sorry for the conductors with their 3 minute breaks.

    Of course not being able to walk around the station building, built in 1919, dressed in vintage and chain-smoking, is a terrible thing too :D
     
  4. B. F. Socaspi

    B. F. Socaspi One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    240
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    I agree to an extent that smoking in restaurants shouldn't be allowed. That extent being that there is no difference between the amount of smoke that's in the non-smoking section and the smoking.

    But I believe in free association. If you don't want to go to a smoking restaurant...take your business elsewhere.

    That being said, keep in mind that the reason you see so many cigarettes isn't just because of the time period; the tobacco industry had a lot to do with it.
     
  5. KY Gentleman

    KY Gentleman One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,871
    Location:
    South Carolina
    It used not to be a big deal! The sight of even young kids smoking (elementary school age) wasn't even that uncommon around here in the '70's. I'm glad that it now seems so odd.
     
  6. BellyTank

    BellyTank I'll Lock Up

    When I moved from New Zealand to London, in the '90s, I was very surprised
    that smoking was allowed at the movies. And on buses. Smoking had been banned on the London Underground tube trains- there had been a massive station fire and many deaths, a few years earlier. It still seems strange not smoking in pubs and bars, though. I couldn't have put up with it on the tube.


    B
    T
     
  7. Subvet642

    Subvet642 A-List Customer

    Yeah, I remember the good old days, too! :( The statewide smoking ban in restaurants and bars went into effect only a few years ago here. Before that, it was town by town, and I lived in a town (well, city, really). that was not ever going to enact one of their own. Of course, the law of unintended consequences being what it is, now the sidewalks are filled with drunken smokers, 'cause we can't light up inside where we belong. :beer: At home, I keep a matching cigarette box and lighter along with a standing ashtray. :cool2:
     
  8. DBLIII

    DBLIII One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    229
    Location:
    Hill City, SD
    The city council enacted a total indoor smoking ban in the big town/small city where I work and in about a year, several restaurants and over a dozen taverns have closed. Coincidentally, the taverns that are outside the city limits have seen a huge increase in business.
    I thought it was better before the ban, when I'd guess about half of the businesses chose to be non-smoking (I smoke and I would still frequent them as the owner had the choice on her/his own).
    Mostly these days, I stay home, and as a strange twist of logic, I don't smoke in my own house. But, it's nice to get outside and gives me an excuse to look at B-3 jackets........
     
  9. DerMann

    DerMann Practically Family

    Messages:
    608
    Location:
    Texas
    It's been in my lifetime (1990-present) that most of the smoking bans and what not have been enacted.

    My dormitory has a ban on smoking inside, but most of the smoke detectors aren't sensitive enough to pick up on tobacco and other such smoke. My friends and I usually smoke pipes in a room in the basement which is usually utilised as a beer pong room during the weekends. It has no windows and only two doors, a few tables and chairs. Perfect for a smoking lounge. On a good night, the room will be filled with so much pipe smoke that it's hard to see and your eyes start hurting.
     
  10. SamMarlowPI

    SamMarlowPI One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,761
    Location:
    Minnesota
    a community college in california had signs outside each building "no smoking within 30 feet" and here in oregon they have the urn things right outside the hall doors crammed to the top with butts...lol...
     
  11. LizzieMaine

    LizzieMaine Bartender

    I think it's hard for those who didn't grow up with it to understand just how pervasive smoking was before about 1980 or so. When I was growing up, I didn't know a single adult who didn't smoke, except for my grandmother -- and she gave it up only because she'd had a series of heart attacks. My grandfather and uncle smoked cigarettes and pipes, my mother chain-smoked, and so did all of her friends. You'd go to a lunch counter and the air would be blue with tobacco, and you'd go to school and see not just teachers but high-school students gathered outside the back door, puffing away.

    There were laws against posession of tobacco by minors, but they were not enforced, at least not around here. When I was six years old, my mother would send me to the store with half a dollar to buy her a pack of cigs, and the clerk would think nothing of handing them over.

    At the time, you just didn't notice it -- that was just the way the world smelled. For whatever reason I never took up the habit myself -- I tried one when I was 15 and didn't see any point to it, so I never had another -- and now I can smell it a mile away. But at the time, whether you smoked or not, you really didn't notice it.
     
  12. HarpPlayerGene

    HarpPlayerGene I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    4,682
    Location:
    North Central Florida
    Yeah, I remember smoking in theaters, restaurants, airplanes and grocery stores to name a few. There was always some young fella' pushing that big wide broom up the aisles of the store gathering up scores of butts that we just dropped on the floor and stepped on all the time. While I too think that there has gotten to be too much restriction on smoking these days, it astounds me that we behaved as we did back then and it was deemed acceptable.
     
  13. LordBest

    LordBest Practically Family

    Messages:
    692
    Location:
    Australia
    Being somewhat of a gourmet, I have to say I agree with smoking bans in places where food is served as its main function (restaurants, cafes etc) as there is little so disturbing to ones palate as swallowing cigarette smoke with ones food. Not to mention foods which tend to pick up flavours very easily, and no one wants a cigaratte flavoured entree.
    Part of the problem is many smokers show little to no consideration for other people in their surroundings, which is why many non-smokers get so indignant. Crowding directly around a shop or restaurant door filling the doorways air with smoke may seem convenient to the smoker, but when you have to walk through that and end up smelling like stale smoke on your way to the theatre it is extremely irritating. There is a reason for smoking caps and jackets, afterall. I am sure the people of the Golden Age would have smokes like gentleman (and ladies) rather than vulgarly blowing smoke in peoples faces just because.
    Not to be rude, but comparing a voluntary leisure activity with automobile seatbelts is rather silly, unless you object to railings on balconies and stairwells as well.
     
  14. B. F. Socaspi

    B. F. Socaspi One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    240
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    An aside, I find it kind of funny how hookah bars get the slide on all this legislation. They just opened a hookah place across the street from the university in my town, and it's ridiculous. They let anyone buy it, regardless of age, which irks me a lot since no one college age and under seems to realize smoking a hookah is still harmful. And it seems that half the people in it are chainsmoking cigarettes or gas station cigars (both of which are affront to olfaction -- get a corncob and a pouch of Prince or the Captain people!) and passing around one cup of coffee.

    I'd much rather have a "tobacco lounge", where you (if you're of age) get to sit around on plush sofas with real tobacco than hookah bars full of adolescents (I know, hypocritical).

    Funny note, my school up until the late 90's/early 00's had smoking completely okay in class if it was okay with your teachers, and perfectly fine in the senior lounge and cafeteria. One of my teachers was reminiscing about the 'good old days' and it came up.
     
  15. Sepe

    Sepe New in Town

    Messages:
    15
    Location:
    Espoo, Finland
    As far as I've understood (might very well be wrong), many places where there is a complete ban on indoors smoking, the hookah bars are using the non-tobacco non-nicotine narghile for their pipes? Great, now it's just as unhealthy but tastes worse!

    As far as the smoking bans go, I wouldn't care less for the customer. Most won't be in the joint 24/7, and even if they do, they can pick where to eat or drink. However, the employees have to be in the smoke for hours and that sure can't be healthy. Of course you could say that they too can pick their workplace but hey, they can't pick whether they want to eat and pay their rent or not.

    I think they did have a such law somewhere in the US, that if there's less than, say, 5 employees in the place, they may decide whether or not to allow indoors smoking. Sounds reasonable to me, as in a small company like that, everyone is likely to get heard and they can make a democratic decision.
     
  16. ArrowCollarMan

    ArrowCollarMan A-List Customer

    Messages:
    464
    Location:
    Los Angeles, Cal-i-forn-i-a
    Second hand smoke seems to be a big reason for smoking bans throughout the nation. I live in Los Angeles in the San Gabriel valley and people need to smoke so they can filter the air. I wonder how many harmful chemicals I breathe into my lungs everyday just going outside?

    Lately I've just been wishing I could smoke anywhere and I have no idea why. I only get around a couple smokes a month anyway but if I smoke around certain people or talk about what cigars I like I usually get a huge guilt trip. I guess that goes with people trying to tell you what to do. My dad told me do what I want and not care what anyone else thinks. That probably has more truth to it today than a long time ago, I fear. But what do I know?

    I honestly don't even care about the nicotine kick, I just like blowing smoke. It represents something for me too even though its bad for you. Maybe the tobacco companies made me think its cool or maybe its just is apart of a persona I wish to mimic. I'm really not sure. I figure I might as well smoke up anyway. The way things are going it will be completely illegal as well as immoral in 15 years.
     
  17. HarpPlayerGene

    HarpPlayerGene I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    4,682
    Location:
    North Central Florida
    OK, here's a question:

    Anyone know where a fella' can buy Camels or Pall Malls without filters for cheap?

    They are no less healthy for me than their filtered counterparts but I like the idea of not buying/disposing all those filters. I don't throw them on the ground, mind you, but they do wind up getting thrown away.

    A carton of Pall Mall 100 filters in box package costs about $21.00 in my neck of the woods. A carton of Pall Mall non-filter (same amount of tobacco but without the filter and in simpler paper packages) costs $39 and change!! :eek:

    I don't get it.
     
  18. Slim Portly

    Slim Portly One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,285
    Location:
    Las Vegas
    I was surprised when watching the recent recut of 1973's "The Exorcist." In an early scene where Regan is is a hospital having tests performed, the doctor steps out into the hallway with her mother to talk privately with her and as they are talking he lights up a cigarette. Right there in the hospital hallway, just outside of the room where tests are being done on a patient. What really surprised me was the fact that I had no recollection of noticing anything out of the ordinary with that scene when I first watched the movie in a theater.
     
  19. HarpPlayerGene

    HarpPlayerGene I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    4,682
    Location:
    North Central Florida
    I scored a gross of old promotional paper matchbooks with an early four color process printing of a cowboy scene on the outside. On the inside is an ad for a doctor's office in Grand Ledge, Michigan. If you want to call him up, the phone number is 118. :D
     
  20. ArrowCollarMan

    ArrowCollarMan A-List Customer

    Messages:
    464
    Location:
    Los Angeles, Cal-i-forn-i-a
    I wonder if people are a tad overzelaous about it now? I'm probably wrong. But in general that seems to be a trend. Any of you look at a playground lately? Its that kinda thing.
     

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