We human beings are a complex species, and we have very unique mating rituals. While in the wild, a lot of birds like Peacock and cranes dance to attract a mate, others like bull, elephants and deer will have a duel for the right to pass on the genes.
But as I said, we humans are a complex species so mating rituals are also very different, we have devised various ways to attract a mate. Some people will spray themselves with a ton of deodorants with the hope of attracting a mate only to be surrounded by honey bees, some others think that they need to pump iron in gym and the moment they flaunt their six-pack abs (or was it 8 in case of Shahrukh Khan?), they will be surrounded by women.
But where during the evolution of human species some over smart advertisement professional propagated the myth that the best way to attract a mate is to smoke a cigarette and blow the smoke like Mt. Etna. As a young man, I had my shares of rendezvous with honey bees, as I went on a college picnic drenched in deodorant.
During one of the high-profile stag meeting in the hostel room of our college one of my class fellows suggested that I need to start smoking as all my visits to Gym have resulted only in back ache and wrist dislocation, and the deodorant seems to be working more on honey bees and less on girls.
But all his persuasion and coaxing by other fellows in the class, who have discovered nicotine while still in teens, failed to make me play with fire. I would just tell them that I would live without a girlfriend rather than smoke a cigarette. While I never shared the reasons with them, let me share them with you all here.
My grandpa was a smoker, but he was not an ordinary smoker. He used to smoke the hookah as a first choice and only before going to bed he would light up a cigarette. As I used to spend a lot of time with him, my mother would miss no opportunity to warn me as well as poor grandpa, that I should not be around grandpa when he is smoking.
For me the hookah was a magical mysterious device that took you to some divine world with melodious sound of water rumbling in the silver vessel at the bottom coming from heavens to announce the arrival of mighty monsoon clouds.
Every once in a while, I would pester grandpa with questions related to hookah and why he just did not smoke cigarettes. So one day he explained me that hookah is less harmful as the smoke is filtered through the water, so he preferred hookah over cigarette, but since, by the end of day it was too much a pain to make hookah, so he preferred a cigarette.
One day mom was not at home and I was adamant with grandpa that I want to try hookah, he was very upset with me and told me that if I try hookah now as a kid, I will never be able to smoke for the rest of my life. While we were debating on this, somebody knocked on the door and grandpa went to answer the door, I got my window of opportunity and I took a puff from the hookah.
Next second, I did reached heaven, only this heaven was not like what I had imagined, my chest was burning, my eyes were watery, I started coughing like there is a toad in my neck that need to come out. Poor grandpa rushed back from the door and patted me on back, tried to wash my face, gave me water but my crying and coughing did not subside for about half an hour.
Finally some éclairs from his pocket did the trick and we both decided this will be our secret for life never to be told to my mother. Ever since that day whenever anybody offered me a cigarette, it took me back to the day when I stole a puff from my grandpa’s hookah, and I politely refused. Some of my friends even questioned my friendship for not smoking with them, but I just laughed it off.
Now dear reader, while I do not recommend you to try this method on any child to keep him away from smoking, the fact is, it did work for me. As for finding a mate, you can see I did get married as my wife like a million other women out there do not think that smoking makes a man attractive. Though the real reason why she decided to get married to me has never been shared with me, but this is one secret I am happy to live without knowing.
Would love to know from the non-smokers what made you never play with the fire?
Sasha and Prasad Np are proud parents of 2 girls whom they fondly call Princess and Pinkette. He wears many hats after taking a break from being corner office critter for a long time. He is now an entrepreneur, blogger, photographer, traveler and a potential investor in start-ups with unique concepts especially if they are in travel related business. He blogs at Desi Traveler, and can be reached at Facebook and Twitter.