No smoking allowed

The Cigarette Mentality

Two hours.

I had fought with myself for two straight hours before I broke.

Earlier, I found myself spying the pack of clove cigarettes that I had bought several weeks prior for my father.

After a breakdown, my father ended up in a psych ward for several weeks. 

He had threatened to commit suicide. 

This wasn’t the first time he had had such a breakdown. 

A similar incident happened after a heated argument with my brother. 

Four weeks. 

Four weeks I believe is how long it has been. 

Those cigarettes were sitting under the center console in my car. I hadn’t had the opportunity to get them to my father. 

I was too busy at the time. 

I sat on the bench outside of Webster and looked at the pack. I had purchased a lighter and an energy drink at a nearby gas station. 

I let the feeling of elation wash over me, the crescendo rose inside my skull. The warm, dull vice of nicotine in the blood; I could feel myself sinking into ebbing waves as I sank into the rising tide. 

It had me again, damn it.

Someone was walking toward the building. I stopped him before he could enter. 

I asked him if he wanted to stop and talk about life. He appreciated the offer, but he was too busy at the time. 

So, I was left to my own devices. The smell of cloves brought on scent memories. I kept thinking about my father. 

I put the cigarette out once, tossed it, waited, picked it back up again and smoked it down about half-way. 

I wanted to write a column about the cigarette mentality; about the overwhelming burden of being subjected to something you strongly desired, but knew was wrong. 

I wanted to talk about being human, and being able to cope with mistakes and struggle to come to terms with self-destructive behavior.

I guess I’ll have to save that column for another week.