Wednesday, 3 August 2011

The smoking ban is tres annoying

As a smoker (occasional, social, whatever), I didn't really mind when the smoking ban came into London a couple of years ago.  Clean air in pubs would be a novelty, although I was dreading going to a club - as soon as I get wasted, I start to chainsmoke. (This is true of many of my friends, but the government hasn't seemed to notice yet that the majority of young smokers only really start a fag session where they get through the first couple of vodka tonics, and then before you know it, the packet of 20 Marlboro's is empty. They seem to think all smokers are blowing smoke into babies faces, or couples desperately have those babies).

But the smoking ban has affected me in another, weirder way that I hadn't originally foreseen.  You see, a lot of the men visiting my club are smokers, and due to the new rules they have to go outside for a cigarette. Outside!  But I can't reach them when they are outside!  I can't hustle them, talk to them, or convince them that the thing they really, really need right now - more than any fag, may I add, is ME!
Even worse, I'm losing count of the number of guys that I manage to win over, and then, just as we are arranging to go, suddenly say;
"We'll have a dance just after I've gone out and had a cigarette."
But the ultimate worse is when the guy and I have decided on a dance, are just excitedly getting up off our seats to go find a booth so that I can give him his four minutes of absolute sexual delight in nudist form, when a voice calls across from another of his friends, "Ere mate, fancy coming out for a quick smoke with me?"
I've yet to meet a man who turns his mate down.  Nicotine addiction is obviously, tragically, more powerful than the call of a beautiful woman.

The rammifications of this go further.  The journey from the front door of the club to his table is a hazardous one, where he will be accosted by many predatory dancers before he gets back to me for the 'promised' lapdance.  Whilst we are (mostly) friends backstage, in the frontline we are out for what we can get.  And the entrance to a stripclub is about as frontline as you get, as all the dancers congregate there, hoardes of 10, 20, 30 women greedily eyeing you up as soon as fresh meat enters their line of sight.  The only thing stopping him from going off with another woman is his sense of decency and loyalty - so not much then!

Of course, a lot of dancers smoke.  I did some research and this article  in the Coventry Telegraph made me laugh.  Who knew that the provincial papers would be the only source of journalistic merit on an issue which affects me personally each and every shift?  It basically says that the council had been receiving complaints about a stripclub called 'Heat' (how ironic) after scantily clad dancers had been lighting up outside the club (surely lighting up in front of Heat is a canny promotional move?)  The really funny bit comes at the end, where the bar opposite complains that the free ogle-show was affecting their business.  Now if I was having a fag across the road from some sexy women in bikinis,  I'd probably finish the packet, hence spending lots of time at said bar.  Why pay the entrance fee when you can watch from 20 yards away for free?

In the West End if you are a stripper wanting to smoke, you have to put on these hideous long jackets, which are clearly a) second hand and b) in a man's size and c) are probably the bouncers rejects, and go outside to smoke in those.  They always stink, the buttons are all missing so you have to hold them fast with one hand, and they are always taken by one of the other girl, so there is usually a queue.  Oh yeah, and you HAVE to wear one of the regulation jackets, even if you have a perfectly serviceable demure long jacket of your own.

I'm shocked at the length of this post! I must really have a secret festering issue with so many aspects of the smoking ban.  I should, of course, rise up and protest, which I will, as soon as I've had a nice cup of tea and a fag....


Anonymous said...

True shit, mi amiga! My club had no smoking 8-12 and from 12-4am they smoked inside....while washing my hair every day got tedious, the money I managed NOT to lose the latter part of the night probably justified the stinky locks, no?

sassy said...

I swear by Batiste dry shampoo to get rid of smelly hair - although you can't overload it as it will look like dandruff flakes.