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Re: Courtesy

Poster: Heather Swann <heather@pop.net>

> Watching the parade of dead horsies go by, regarding the Pennsic Manner
> Police Flap, I am reminded of why I don't go to many SCA events anymore. I
> am allergic to cigarette smoke, and have adult-onset asthma (reactive airway
> disease) as a result of working in a sick building. This means that if
> someone smokes around me, my airway closes and I can't breathe.

It takes a large concentration for me to stop breathing (three or four smokers
in an enclosed space), but if smoke gets on my skin I have to wash it off or my
throat starts to close and my skin itches terribly, and if it gets on my clothes
I must wash them.I have the same problem with cigar smoke.  Most pipe smokes
don't seem to have that effect, or at least not as much....I suspect the culprit
is however the tobacco is treated.

> Unfortunately, a surprising number of folks in Atlantia see nothing wrong
> with smoking at events. I've asked people (as politely as possible, choking
> and gasping, inhaler in hand) to stop on numerous occasions. Many have been
> wonderful and apologetic; however, an equal number have been defensive,
> offended, or rude.

Actually, the big problemo I have with it is when people say they must smoke by
the only door into the site.  This means I have to run a gauntlet holding my
breath, then get in and wash off my skin, though it's still in my hair which I
must wash when I get home.  If there were some sort of outdoor smoking section I
could avoid I'd be okay, but people smoke by the fighting, so I usually can't
watch that, then they smoke by the doors, so I've gotta be careful there.

Frankly this breaks the period atmosphere much more for me than folks I've seen
in polyester garb.

> I have spoken with autocrats about the problem at various
> events; some are helpful, others indifferent.

Most of 'em I've asked shrug and say, "Well, what can ya do?  People will always

> I have also spoken with past
> Kingdom senschals, who say there's nothing that can be done to convince
> people to let me enjoy my hobby sans smoke. Often, I spend much of an event
> fleeing the fumes. Sadly,it's usually easier on my lungs to stay home. I
> don't mean to whine, just to present the matter for consideration. Does
> anyone else have this problem? How can it be handled by
> autocrats/seneschals/me?
> -Baroness Caitlin ni h'Arrachtain

I find one just has to work around it as the prevailing attitude in practice is
that you're too much of an exception.  I don't mean to say folks aren't
courteous, but that's usually the attitude I pick up- that or they believe I'm
fibbing just to harass them about their smoking.  Of course, since I've been
careful, they haven't seen me stop breathing, turn funny colours, and fall
down!  ; )  Naturally, it seems too much bother on my part to let them see that
sort of example...


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