Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Frankly I'm Disgusted That I Would Have Had To Post This Where I Live

To all my neighbors,

Some of you are new here. Some of you who are new may not realize that it is against Oakland housing law to smoke on the premises, anywhere on the grounds of this building. Please will you all leave this posted so everyone knows.

All of us living here would like to be comfortable. That means we wish to open our windows for fresh air anytime we feel like it. There is a ninety year old neighbor living here. She served in WWII. Doesn't she deserve to be comfortable? Others do not smoke and do not wish to breathe in second-hand smoke, nor should they have to. Others are artists and they do not wish their artwork or their furnishings to stink of your smoke.

I believe that there are times for radical honesty, and this is one. I have asthma. I smell the smoke from anywhere in or around this building. It makes me cough. It gives me headaches. It stinks.

More radical honesty: My mother recently died a horrible torturous death from Lung Cancer. She had smoked for 35 years. She weighed 60 pounds at the time of her death. She had tubes coming out of every part of her body. She was delirious, and like many smokers, in denial about the cause of her illness right up until the very end. It was not pretty. I will go so far as to say that the death of my mother was about as ugly as death gets.

Do you know that even third-hand smoke (the kind that clings to insides of houses, in hair, on skin and worst of all on the breath of smokers even when they are not smoking, even when it has been hours since the last smoke) can be deadly? These are the latest findings.

I am an artist, so I have tried to be a little bit more casual and creative than this posting is, but sadly there are perhaps a few of you (judging by the different brands of butts I find on the ground here) who continue to smoke even though I have spoken to you, and left other notes here as well as little butt installation artwork on this table. Both have been promptly removed.

Please do not remove this note. I have more, and I will replace it. I need for everyone to get the message: DO NOT SMOKE ANYWHERE NEAR THIS BUILDING.

For all of the above reasons, please also do not burn incense.

Thank you for your cooperation in this very important matter,


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