An Expert

I’m going down the highway at 70 MPH and the the guy in front of me flicks a lit cigarette out of his window.  It hits the pavement in front of my car and I drive through the spray of sparks.  It appalls me every time.  Where do these people get off thinking it’s somehow okay launch flaming projectiles into the grill of my car at high speeds?

Next thing I see is a light flicker in the car in front of me.  He’s firing up again.  A chain smoker.  A moment later he quickly sticks his hand out the window to ash his cigarette.  Another shower of sparks shoots out of his car.  This man is a high-speed fire hazard.

I thought a little about the technique he used to ash his cigarette (cupping it slightly in his hand, and sticking his hand out the window) to prevent the ashes from blowing back into his car.

During the years he’s been smoking he learned a technique for ashing his cigarettes.  He knows the timing of cigarette smoking, and can judge when he has time to sneak in a smoke and when he can’t.  He has a favorite brand, and knows why that is his favorite.  He has a backup brand for when that one isn’t available.  He knows what a pack should cost, and how much the stores around his house and job charge.  He knows how much you save buying cartons.  He has a strong opinion about menthol cigarettes.  He knows which restaurants allow smoking.  He knows where that tank in the airport is where you’re allowed to smoke.  He has a favorite brand of disposable lighters.  He knows how to blow smoke rings.  He knows which gas stations are open 24 hours.  He knows how many cigarettes he needs to smoke each day, and how long he can go between smokes.

He’s an expert on smoking.

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