I'm bored of smoking. Isn't that terrible? I feel disconcertingly like I've just slagged off my best friend. Smoking got me through every exam I've taken since I was 16. I've had relationships (short ones, obviously) where the sex has run a close second to the joys of sharing a post-coital fag. I owe it something other than stained fingers and an operatically rasping cough, surely?
Well, that's what I thought at Glastonbury when my empty Marlboro packet was being used as a very chic if utterly useless rainhat. Really I don't owe it anything. Smoking sucks now. Everyone's physically addicted, nobody relishes the cigarette/post-work drink combination anymore, it's all so pathetically needy. I haven't actually enjoyed it the way I used to in ages: I've been socially addicted to the things for nearly 10 years now and I'm bored of waking up in the morning with a throat that feels like it's been done over by Edward Scissorhands. I get ill, I feel sick, I'm bored of handing over cigarettes for people who can make millefeuille but can't roll a fag.
I adore making lists, so it's been no end of joy writing up all the things I've thought of to help me give up. Some of the vaguely more reasonable ideas including doing more exercise (passing time spent smoking), watching an entire season of television (ditto), getting a load of patches, avoiding the pub (boo, but totally necessary) and throwing my housemate out of the window unless he stops shouting 'OH SWEET NICOTINE' from his bedroom.
I've even joined my quitters' group at work (dreadful: I feel like I'm signing up to Pariahs Weekly) and I expect there will be patches and motivational talks. I imagine it'll be a bit like being a reprogrammed Scientologist, when everything you knew before was WRONG, but instead of getting exciting facts involving volcanoes and lizards you get clean-smelling clothes, the ability to run five steps without falling into a coma, and an extra octave in your singing voice. (Join me in this, won't you? Oh go on, I need the company.)