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An Ode To The Drunk Cigarette

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I am not a smoker. My car doesn’t smell like an ashtray, I don’t buy cigarettes often, and I rarely have them on me. In most scenarios, smoking a cigarette doesn’t make sense to me. Why get a few seconds of pleasure for some serious health side effects? Or worse? High school health class shoved that down my throat. I have no reason to get addicted to that.

But then there’s that one beautiful, drunken night. You’ve had a few, you’re enjoying yourself, and a friend of yours steps out for a cigarette.

“Want one?” he asks. “Nah, I don’t smoke,” you reply. “But I’ll follow you outside to keep you company.” You and your buddy stumble into the great outdoors and he lights one up. Being raised to avoid heaters, you haven’t smoked, and your family doesn’t either. To this point in your young life, you’ve never even been confronted with such a situation. But, you’re drunk.

“Mind if I take a drag?”

Your buddy hands you the cig and you don’t have the first idea what will happen. You bring it to your lips, suck some smoke into your mouth, and blow it out, only to have your buddy call you a pussy because you didn’t inhale. One Bill Clinton joke later and you decide to inhale. You take a decent drag and inhale deeply, like you’re trying to suck all oxygen out of a small room. You immediately start coughing. It tastes horrible, your mouth is now dry, and you smell like smoke. Why would anybody ever do this to himself? How is this enjoyable in any way?

All of a sudden, you get a huge rush to the head. At first you feel dizzy, then mellow and numb. Your drunkenness had beforehand started to wane, but you are a new man again. Then, you make the discovery of one of life’s greatest treats: the drunk cigarette. The drunk cigarette is, in all ways, perfect. It’s beautiful. It not only restores your drunkenness, but it gives you the opportunity to connect with complete strangers who may eventually become good friends. The drunk cigarette is barter: walk in one night with a pack of cigarettes, and if you play your cards right, you can easily walk out having made 10 or 15 bucks off of drunken addicts. It is also, most importantly, justifiable–it’s just one cigarette. Okay, maybe it’s six, but the point still stands.

You hand the cigarette back to your friend. “Can I have another?”

So it begins.

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