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Smoke 🚬🚭Singapore has by and large eradicated the rather nasty habit of smoking. This has not been easy, as nicotine is highly addictive both physiologically and psychologically. For the older generation it was the only thing to take their minds off their woes. But alas, many found that years of puffing away only brought them health woes in their later years.
Smoking is social norm in my younger days. It was seen as glamorous and even a macho thing to do. Many young man picked up a cigarette to look tough. We see celebrities with a “ciggy” in hand, looking handsome and thoughtful into the distance. Yes, they even had a cute name! How can an impressionable youngster resist!
Songs that reference smoking or cigarettes didn’t help either. Songs like:
Although we have been successful in preventing new addiction, it seems that the young are still very much into this nasty habit. As the older generation breaks away from the nicotine addiction, the younger generation is puffing away as if their lives depended on it. And, I’m not being sexists but just stating a fact here - there seems to be more woman smokers these days.
Both young and old, we see these ladies - someone’s mum, sister, girlfriend or wife; proudly hanging around smoking corners puffing away. They look quite out of place, in my opinion; with their high heels and office wears and their cigarettes dangling from their fingers. Quite a liberating sight to behold, some may argue.
A friend was particularly incensed by such a sight, and was so passionate about it that he challenged me to write a song about this developing phenomenon. Well I’m not one who would walk away from a challenge - a song writing challenge at that; so I agreed.
So here’s my take on the situation, entitled “Smoke”:
Standing in a cloud of smoke
Getting stares and curious looks
But with a cigarette in her hand
She didn’t give a damn
She takes a drag tries to look glam
Standing out on the street
At the corner where they meet
In her heels and dress of lace
She looks quite out of place
A flower wilting in a smoky haze
Smoke in the air in her hair in her elegant wear
Smoke in her eyes she wants to cry for being there
Smoke to impress to de-stress to be like the rest
Smoke on the run in the sun is no fun
She tells herself she could stop
When the time comes
With a cigarette between her fingers
She really didn’t want to linger
It’s the usual sad crowd
Acting tough talking loud
Feeling a little foolish hanging out
This set of lyrics is still looking for a melody, so if there’s a virtuoso reading this and is feeling up for the challenge - let your creative juices flow and put some crotchets and quavers down to accompany these words.
And ladies - you know you already look glamorous without the cigarette in your hand right? Speaking as an ex-smoker, I can assure you that you’ll never look more beautiful than when you’re not holding that stick of cancer between your fingers.