I’m seriously considering moving out of Los Angeles, and maybe even out of California, entirely. Oregon looks good, and so does the Moon.
But there is a lot here that I love: the weather is almost always perfect, and when it isn’t, it usually gets back to the business of being perfect within a day or so. I love it that I can, if I want to, ski for most of the day, and still ride the afternoon glass at Malibu. I love it that there are three major international airports for me to pick from, public transportation that dreams of actually being useful when it grows up, and too many incredible day trips and local hikes to count.
On the other hand, there is a lot that I hate. I hate the traffic. I hate the cost of living. I hate the public transportation that is still a long way from truly being useful. I hate it that Lindsay Lohan keeps crashing her car in front of me all the time, and I hate our idiot governor. Oh, and I really fucking hate the 134.
But I also love that if I sold my house, I could practically buy a castle, with a moat and dragons and everything, anywhere else in the country, as long as I understood that once I leave California, I can never come back. See, California is sort of a crime family like that; it’s a one-way door, man.
Today, the State of California offered up another thing to add to my list of hates. . .
By a vote of 6-0, the Air Resources Board in California declared that secondhand cigarette smoke is a toxin, given the same level of severity as arsenic and benzene. That makes the Golden State the first state in the Union to do so.
California smokers emit 40 tons of nicotine, 365 tons of small particles of pollution and 1,900 tons of carbon monoxide each year, according to the American Lung Association.
State scientists will investigate and report on the state’s smokiest locales — such as outside buildings, parks, beaches and public events.
Okay, that’s a lot of garbage going into the air . . . but give me a break. Are they going to ban smokers from smokng in any public place in the state, like they did up in
Ventura County Calabasas? (Sorry, Fred!)
I don’t smoke, and I’m fine with smokers having their designated smoking areas, which gives jerks like me designated non-smoking areas. I hate cigarette smoke almost as much as I hate George W. Bush, but this is just totally. Fucking. Retarded. It’s not like we’re all gasping for air whenever we step outside, and if you don’t like walking past people who have to smoke outside buildings, hold your fucking breath for ten steps. That’s what I do, and last time I checked I was doing just fine.
Is secondhand smoke an annoyance? Sure. Disgusting to smell and walk through? Of course. But this is just the first step toward making it completely illegal for smokers to smoke anywhere in public, and that’s just ridiculous. Remember how you were going to the park last week, and goshdarnit you just had to leave because the cloud of secondhand smoke was so thick you couldn’t see your frisbee? Or how about when you went to the beach, and pulled out a gas mask because all those off-shore breezes couldn’t clear out the now-toxic plume of deadly carcinogens? And who can forget that Dodger game that was called last June because of secondhand smoke! What’s that? That makes almost as much sense as Saddam sponsoring 9/11? Well, the State of California disagrees with you. Why do you hate California so much?
I can hardly wait for the commercials to start. What do you suppose my brain on secondhand cigarette smoke will look like? I’m guessing a nice tofu scramble with spinach and some roma tomatoes.