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Thursday, 18 December 2014

You Still Are Second-Hand Smoking Virtually Everywhere

Hey everybody. Stop for a moment and think: When was the last time you smelled cigarette smoke? I'm sorry to say this, but you were smoking it. You are not simply smelling a memory or vague impression. I've taken a measuring tape and calculated tobacco smell coming  from over 110 FEET from an outdoor picnic table near my apartment. There was no detectable wind that day either.

 I was astounded. Could I really be smelling it? Or was my olfactory sense surpassing that of a bloodhound? Well, apparently I'm human.

Folks, how more clearly can I make the case for a tobacco-free world? There is no telling how far away I can smell smoke. I simply ran out of measuring tape at a hundred feet and had to calculate the extra ten feet placing distance markers. The truth is that there is no safe distance from which we can smoke tobacco.

Here in Ottawa new legislation was passed: link to smoke-free outdoor spaces I'm delighted that beaches and parks are smoke-free, as well as all municipal building property, such as libraries, community centres and City Hall. Except the irony is that...

I may spend one hour a year on a beach, yet I and my cat must eat, sleep, meditate etc in my apartment that I call home bombarded with other tenants smoke. I am appalled that my personal living space is inundated with the 7,000+ noxious chemicals.

In 2012 an elderly friend of mine from church told me all the tenants in her building received a letter politely requesting that all smokers buy an air purifier and weatherstrip their door at their expense so as not to disturb other tenants. Now in 2014 I ask myself: When will every single apartment building get on the ball and properly seal leaks between apartments that expose us to deadly second-hand smoke?  I'll be devoting an entire post concerning apartment second-hand smoke.

Here is a short cartoon video to  inspire us to quit smoking

by gifted animator and musician Santhosh Christudas

Friday, 15 August 2014

Freedom From The Mob (Mentality)

Hello and welcome to Freedom Fridays here on NikkiDiamondTobaccoFreeWorld. Today's post is about freeing yourself from the mob mentality. Too often in life we go along with the crowd, with whatever anyone else is doing without really thinking. Sometimes being in a huge mass of people is great, like a wothwhile demonstration or rock concert or festive occasion. There is power in numbers as the Canadian geese fly in V formation. The aerodynamic pattern of the V helps the geese fly faster and they each take turns leading to not get tired out.

What I am talking about today is the anonymous, senseless, faceless acts of smokers that gets buried under the mob. Because a huge crowd of people turn out at a fair or concert and because hundreds or thousands of people are milling around in an anonymous fashion the individual acts get overshadowed by the rationalization of, "Well, everyone is leaving their cigarette butts on the ground. So it doesn't matter whether or not I litter along."

Another example is when out in public and there are clearly visible, prominently displayed no smoking signs, yet there is a huge crowd of people and invariably one or ten people amongst several hundred are smoking anyways. A sort of robot-like trance comes over the majority of the crowd. Like a Do Not Disturb the person who is disturbing us by smoking out of place, because, well, that's not our job, or it doesn't concern us, or we are not really bothered by smoke.

In some countries a small child gets run over by a car. No one stops to offer help or even notices. Friends, you know how you can free yourself from the mob mentality? Or the anonymous crowd mentality? Take action. Gently. Politely. But speak up calmly and briefly. There is power in numbers. But that power should never rationalize or render invisible any harm done to anyone. Have a safe Friday. Set yourself and others free from harm.

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Can't Sleep? Go Bananas!

Good morning and may you savour delectable ripe yellow bananas for your breakie. You never have more than one a day? O.K. There are few foods I cherish more than the mighty banana. True story. I went to a job interview. Short and sweet. She asked what was my favourite fruit. Right away I said, "Banana!" She smiled and asked why. I said because bananas are cheerful because of their bright yellow colour, and they are easy to open, and a great source of energy. She hired me.

You know that famous question we asked each other as kids. If you could be an animal, what animal would you be? I'd be a snake. I'll blog why later. Stay tuned. I wanna ask you as I ask myself. If you could be a fruit, which fruit would you be? I'd proudly be a banana! Because no other fruit so resembles my power animal, the snake! I just love how a banana is shaped in a u. U! You! The other. The one we all need to relate to, to bounce ideas off, to form a marriage, a family, a team, an organization. The banana is such a powerful delicious symbol. We need the yellow warmth of the sun. We love yellow flowers. We are crazy about yellow smiley faces, yellow highlighters make us retain the studying better than any colour. Yellow is nowhere so amazingly apparent in nature than bananas except lemons. But lemon is an acquired taste. And way more maintenance. Knives, sweeteners, water, glasses, lemon juicers, cutting boards, then washing up. No, bananas rock. Hands down.

Dr. Oz extolled the mighty banana as a sleep aid without peer. Only use as needed.

1. Take the sticker off
2. Rinse the skin, cuz you'll be eating it, too. Yes. No complaining. 
3. Submerge whole banana in 2-4 cups of water in a pot, or cut in half if you use a small pot.
4. Boil
5. Let it steep at least 5 minutes
6. Drink all the tea. 
7. Eat all the banana, plus the skin.
8. Be prepared to be amazed you never did this before - it tastes so good.

Go bananas and have a sunshiny day thinking how much better you will sleep tonight

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Meow-Meow! Woof-Woof! Please Smoke Outdoors

Hello my human friends, I am Mr. Luxurious Greezoo Diamond and I am your cat avatar. I insist you look at my luxurious silver fur and pet me every time you walk by. You are walking by me regularly, I hope? And can you pick up some of that high caliber catnip on your way to the mall? I like windows, strings, tiny moving objects emitting red points of light, melted vanilla ice cream and being petted while I eat my food. Please remember to vacuum my long hair daily as I loathe being brushed.

 Actually, there is nothing I hate more, abhor more than those disgusting burning things some of you humans have dangling from your mouths. So unsightly, a real fire hazard next to my luxurious fur.

You Have Wicked Insomnia? There's A Reason Why...Here's Your Wake Up Call

You can't sleep at night. You are so wound up from the thought of how you will survive without lighting up. You are very irritable and you wonder how you will ever stop smoking and stay quit. You are biting your nails. You are pacing the livingroom or salon like we say in French. You are concerned, worried, frantic. You are desperate. You want an answer.

You are not alone. I am sitting here blogging into the wee hours, 1:24 Eastern Standard Time. I am on edge trying not to bite my nails asking myself, "Does anyone really care why I am on edge? Do people care about my mission? This blog is my mission. Does anyone care about my vision? My vision is a tobaccofree world. My vision drives my mission. Just how will I survive with my severe allergies if anyone lights up a cigarette within a hundred feet?" Each day I venture forth out into the world is heroic. Each day, each hour I lovingly confront someone's tobacco addiction and that is heroic. But why am I getting so little support?

Hey, Mr. Smoker and Ms. Smoker. You may think I am your enemy. But I have no enemies. I am on a spiritual path and seek no enemies. I serve everyone as best I can. And that service will improve each day, God willing, the more knowledge and insight that I receive.  All of us desire health and longevity. All of us yearn for the fountain of youth, more time spent with our loved ones, more energy, more prosperity, clean, fresh air. (Heck, I do not ever partake of marijuana for religious and health reasons, but I can see all kinds of purposes for it, if safely and wisely used. No such luck for tobacco.) I see tobacco as one of the worst enemies of all humanity and therefore I say, "Good Riddance." Because it is good to get rid of it, indeed. 

Could it be that you, dear person who smokes, and I, the inveterate nonsmoker, could it be that you and I were cosmically aligned to meet on this same path coming from very opposite ends of the spectrum? It is happening. You are cranky at being asked to quit by your doctor/parent/lover/spouse. You are reluctant, refusing, resisting. Along come I, reluctant to step into my still-smokefilled apartment hallway (even thought there are laws against it)  I am resisting this antiquated hobby of yours. I am refusing to breathe it in one more second, no matter if it is smoked in my apartment building hallway, the street, my city or anywhere else in the world, whether it come from France or China.

Maybe you and I are destined to meet in this safe zone the blogosphere. Maybe there is a spiritual lesson and gift for both you and I, to see that we are one. To end all dualities. So let's stop fighting, shall we?  How can you keep on poisoning yourself when I can't accept it? How could my professor of Theology smoke and teach me about God? I literally changed religions over this. I keep an open mind and embrace all religions but privately I've adopted a life-sustaining lifestyle so I can be sure to best maximize this gift of life of the Universal Truth.

To you I extend my hand. The future is bright. With lovely healing light. We are all alit. No, not those stinking things hanging from human lips. But our hearts are aglow. With a newfound love and peace and joy in how we may help our fellow brothers and sisters still trapped in the dark smoggy poisonous tobacco world.

Come join us. We were meant to meet, you and I.  This is a new reality. A cosmic wake-up call.

It's time to get enlightened. For this may be the only nicotine replacement therapy that is priceless and REALLY works in the long run. It lasts. Tobacco won't. The writing is on the wall.

 I am not fighting you. I am not criminalizing you. I am extending a helping hand, a listening ear and a caring heart. This now is my time spent with you. Well spent. Sincerely spent. Together we can rewrite civilization over again. 

Peace. Let's end this war. Between your desire for health and the addict in you that screams for a cigarette. Bid that old part of you good-bye and watch it die. Read an amazing book that will turn your life upside down. It is called Listening To Depression by Lara Honos-Webb.

Did you know that the pill prescribed for depression called Wellbutrin is also the identical pill prescribed to smokers called Zyban? Dear friends who smoke, you are in pain. From the smoking. Not the withdrawal. Trust me. Read Allen Carr. Quitting is liberation. It will set you free. Welcome home. Your body is your temple. Make it last.

Friday, 8 August 2014

How to Free Yourself From Cigarette Addicts

First of all, you need to identify a cigarette addict. That is fairly easy since smoking is so addictive. A cigarette addict is what I prefer to call smokers, since the vast majority of people who smoke do so addictively. I want to shine a light on this serious addiction that is so often relegated to "the nebulous smoking section." There is this myth that we can segregate cigarette addicts into sections of restaurants, hospitals, and so on. As long as it is temporarily out of sight, out of one's nose then smoking is not discussed anymore. Nobody wants to rock the boat. Nobody wants to tell Gramma or poor old Uncle Melvin that they are indeed addicts.

 The vast majority of smokers are addicts. We were not taught in school that tobacco is an addiction, and the deadliest of all of them as it kills the greatest number of people, including nonsmokers. I remember in Grade 6 when I was 12 receiving the equivalent of one or two classes in Family Values Education about the dangers of smoking. The total time was hardly even two hours. This is a joke. Schools are designed to educate and they have much more to do in preventing youth from taking up tobacco. The dangers were vaguely mentioned, and never followed up on. In order to eliminate anyone taking up smoking we need far more education and intervention and law enforcement. You don't see kids chewing tobacco nowadays, or sniffing snuff? These silly habits became virtually extinct, and tobacco can disappear as well. Therefore I strongly urge all of us to lobby our local school boards and school trustees for far more detailed, ongoing weekly talks about the hazards of tobacco. 

Do smokers themselves think they are addicts? If they do, they are doing very little about it. The smokers I know are very defensive and are in huge denial about how much smoking negatively affects those around them. Trying to explain my eyes are tearing, stinging, and my throat is dry and I'm constantly clearing it for days, weeks after a short visit to a house that hasn't been smoked in for hours seems to fall on deaf ears. So I decided to write this blog to reach out and appeal to a broader vaster network of like-minded individuals who themselves want to a lot more done than just a nonsmoking section on a plane or restaurant. Ugh! Just the thought of being in an airplane where even one person smokes once is nauseating. Yet are they rushing to 12 step meetings to get help to quit? Hardly. I never saw so many cigarette addicts as recovering alcoholics. Yet tobacco is what killed the co-founders of Alcoholics Anonymous. Is this addiction adequately addressed by doctors, dentists, nurses and all therapists? No.

 As long as we keep saying it is a socially acceptable addiction we are sugarcoating the problem. The problem IS precisely that we have all erroneously agreed that it is a socially acceptable addiction. We are the individuals who make up this society. And it is up to us to stop perpetuating such a dangerous addiction. It is as if we are apologizing for it. But I believe we are enabling it to go on on a wide scale, with only drawing imaginary lines as to where a person can smoke. It has been shown that the air in China travels here by wind within one day. So it is pointless to talk about tobacco and other pollutants without going global. We must start in schools, and we must expect more of our places of worship, health clinics and law enforcement. People, we need to speak up and be heard, and we need to do it now, before it's too late and Gramma dies before Johnny's wedding or graduation. This is serious. It is an epidemic, it is a modern-day plague.


Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Quitting Smoking Is More Valuable Than Sapphires

True story I kid you not. I am a strong woman and there I was last Sunday axing down mum's thorn tree by request and took a break after swinging a heavy ax. Looked down. My brand new wedding ring had popped its stone. Who knew where. Anywhere in a giant tangle of brush and stones.

My mum called me two days later, "Honey, I have good news." I thought she was calling me to announce she had quit smoking. "Floyd found your stone!" Now as happy as I was to hear that, I would have rather heard she quit smoking.

Friends, quitting smoking is practically priceless and is THE BEST GIFT you can give anyone you love. Gemstones are replaceable. Your lungs or time spent with you is not.