I was pretty sure smokers didn’t stand a chance when I read that the City Council was considering additional limitations on public smoking, and now Mayor Bieter’s eMemo confirms it: City Council has approved two-smoke free air ordinances which further restrict where people can light up a cigarette.
The first ordinance bans smoking in bars and private clubs, near bus stops or other transit areas, on outdoor commercial patios accessible to children or on public property, at the Grove Plaza, on 8th Street from Bannock to Main streets, within 20 feet of a City of Boise-owned building, in outdoor ticket and service lines, and in other public locations.The second ordinance bans smoking in all public parks –- including within 20 feet of the Boise Greenbelt –- except in designated areas within Ann Morrison and Julia Davis parks and the Warm Springs Golf Course.
I know, it’s the Mayor’s eMemo and it has to look important and stuff, but if it’d been me, I’d had written it differently:
The ordinances ban smoking everywhere.
I mean, what exactly is “other transit areas”? The whole downtown? Roads with sidewalks? You can transit from Moxie Java and More on Overland and Five Mile all the way to my house, is that included? And about the buildings… I’m lucky to know which bank owns my house, what do I know who owns what building?
Luckily I don’t have to worry because I don’t smoke anymore. I know it’s a horrible habit, bad for you, bad for your bottom line, and that’s why I quit. I understand the ban in parks, but in the bars? What’s next, gin and tonics? Sure, second-hand smoking is bad for you, but so is a drunk driver. I guess is where all countries are headed anyway. Even Spain banned smoking in bars at the beginning of the year. Talk about shocking. It used to be the parents in the bar drinking and smoking while their kids played outside; according to my dad, now the kids play inside the bar while the parents stand outside with their drink on one hand and their cigarette on the other.
Smoky bars remind me of my youth in the Basque Country, when Leire, Terese, Begoña, Garbiñe (if she made the bus on time) and Lali would head out to Portugalete on Saturday nights to party until the clubs closed, usually 6 or 7 in the morning. No way I could do that now, but I have nothing but fun stories and good memories of those years.
Maybe that’s why I don’t mind people smoking in bars, especially in the Basque Center in Boise, which always made me feel a little bit like being back home. Mischievous. I will definitely miss it.
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