My journey into vaping

Day 176: Why should I have to justify my vices?


An on-line acquaintance of mine asked me why I felt the need to write a blog justifying my choice to vape. “You’re a grown-up.” He said, and after having assured him that I wasn’t sitting here justifying it to myself I stopped and thought about what he’d said. He’s quite right. I really shouldn’t have to justify my choice of legal recreational substance, especially when used in such a way as to cause as little possible harm to either myself or those around me as I can. The fly in that ointment is the anti-tobacco zealots. Those who see tobacco as an enemy, with nicotine as its Commander in Chief. The ones with closed minds that no amount of convincing will change. The ones that think vaping is smoking, and that both must be outlawed.

A blog, by its very nature, will always be an exercise in navel gazing as a spectator sport. That said there is a point to all of this. Minority voices have always had to struggle to be heard. The minority is the underdog beating away at solid indifference. Vapers are a minority, and we’ve been described negatively as everything from AstroTurf to cultists to affluent loud-mouths, but always with the underlying tone of condescension. A faint aura of disapproval, the slight sniff to see if anything other than custard or RY4 can be detected on our clothing. We’re the ones who actually use these products, so we are always biased in favour of them. Our opinions are anecdotal and irrelevant.

My ideal world is very probably impossible. I would like to live in a world where my choices are not dictated by the health-nuts’ policy of the month. I would love to live in a world where I was treated as a grown-up and didn’t feel the need to justify nicotine, caffeine or alcohol use given the fact that MY use of these things causes no problems. In fact I’d like the nanny state to butt out and leave me in peace. I’m one of these odd people who will fight to get that peace though, and I cut my teeth in 1990’s Usenet so I’m in this for the long haul with a very thick skin. I’m also in the right. We’ll see who laughs last.

(I apologise for my absence these last few days. I had a bereavement in my extended family – an ex partner of mine – and my health took a dip as a result. I’m back now.)


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Author: Beki

A Mad middle aged woman who lives in the middle of nowhere, Scotland with a parrot, two Jack Russells, some koi, and a tank full of tropical fish. I have M.E. but that's really not important. I draw, paint, write, game, garden, blog and enjoy a good vape. I have three lovely grown up offspring, and 2 ex-husbands. I do genuinely have the legal title of 'Lady Rebecca Jane [SURNAME]', and am proud to support the restoration project which bestowed that title on me. I will happily explain where to find more information on this if you contact me.

2 thoughts on “Day 176: Why should I have to justify my vices?

  1. And here I am again, ‘cos I just can’t resist!! Glad you are back again Beki, and sorry to hear you have lost someone. Sending positive waves and virtual hugs.

    I want to challenge whether it is even accurate to call perfectly legitimate and non-problematic use of the three substances you’ve named above “VICES”. We’ve been taught and conditioned (and indeed propagandised, apparently successfully) to regard consumption of nicotine, caffeine and alcohol as vices.

    As for some of the other things which make life worthwhile but the health Nazis love to demonise – sugar, butter, salt, chocolate… the list increases in length every day, and of course there are periodic “changes of mind” about all this stuff, too. Am I right in saying eggs are OK again nowadays? There was some fuss in the media a short while ago because some ‘expert’ or another has popped their head above the parapet and suggested we might have the cholesterol/saturated fat thing wrong after all, so cheese, butter, cream, roast beef et al might not be quite such horrendous dietary no-nos after all. I’m losing the plot with all this stuff.

    At the end of the day, it doesn’t sound to me as if it is in any way reasonable to suggest there is any logical reason why you (or anyone else) should regard yourself as some kind of ‘sinner’ for enjoying a cup of tea or coffee, a vape and a tot/glass/pint (insert appropriate measure to suit) of whichever type of grog appeals to you. Unless you are religious and belong to a group which forbids such activities – and you CHOOSE to comply with these restrictions, where is the sin?

    You’ve explained in some detail the difference that consuming nicotine makes to your daily life; in the event that you happened to be diabetic, would you regard using insulin as a vice? I doubt it. Under the same principle, vaping is not a vice.
    Signs on motorways encourage tired drivers to take a break – and have a cup of coffee to help themselves stay alert while driving. So consuming caffeine – not a vice either. Most people would I believe agree that being alive in the modern world can be stressful, and most medics will tell you that stress is NOT good for you. Relaxation after you have been dealing with stress is important for both your physical and mental health. If a glass of wine (or whatever) helps you to relax – sorry, that one can’t be regarded as a vice either…

    So I’m afraid Beki, if you want to blog about (and/or justify) your vices, I reckon you are going to have to come up with something else as a topic!! xx


    • I agree with you entirely; I was stuck with the quote though, because the acquaintance described it as a vice. To be fair an outsider looking in at vaping without the facts would probably consider it to be so as well. I don’t, but I’ll accept that may be because I’m biased. There are a long list of things PH consider to be vices that I don’t. Sugar, fat, salt, being sedentary by choice, “poor” diet – with the scare quotes because often it’s not. I try and fit my language in their reference frame, mainly because that makes it more accessible. I do sometimes think I’d be better doing it picture-book style though, rather than try for the elegant explanation.


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