Buried back in a corner of the attic was a pipe stand and a bunch of Dad’s pipes. They hadn’t been used since one New Year’s Eve when he pitched all his cigarettes in the fireplace and quit smoking cold turkey.
I was a little late coming home from my date with Shari Stiver that night, and the next morning he gave me an uncharacteristic chewing-out. I mean, I wasn’t THAT late, so I was surprised.
A lack of smoke in the air
Over the next couple of weeks, we noticed he was sucking on a lot of hard candies and was crankier than usual, but we didn’t notice the lack of smoke in the air.
Finally, he told us what he had done. “I didn’t want to say anything until I was sure I could do it,” he said.
Most of the pictures we have of him showed him with a cigarette in hand. It wasn’t unusual for him to be puffing on one, have one smouldering in the ashtray and be reaching for a fresh one to light.
He said it was fairly easy for him to quit because “I had become disgusted with myself: the way my clothes smelled, the way I had burned holes in everything… I no longer LIKED to smoke.”
It sure made shopping for him a lot harder when Christmas and his birthday rolled around. We bought him a lot of smoking paraphernalia like those pipes and stand over the years.