Leonard, smoking..and me

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Andrew McGeever
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Leonard, smoking..and me

Postby Andrew McGeever » Sat Feb 19, 2011 4:26 am

I'm told Leonard stopped smoking cigarettes when he was 69.
Well, I have stopped smoking cigarettes for 69 days. Honest. For those who know me, this will come as a shock, surprise to their view of normality. I share their disbelief.
I want to know/ share the details of what it's like.
For me, the act of writing without a cigarette in one hand and pen in the other creates an imbalance: from the age of 18 I have written nothing without the accompaniment of my friends,my top twenty pack.
This post has been difficult, and typed without the aid of a cigarette...honest.
Genuine replies only...spare me zealots.
Andrew.
MaryB
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Re: Leonard, smoking..and me

Postby MaryB » Sat Feb 19, 2011 11:01 pm

CONGRATULATIONS Andrew on overcoming the hardest habit in the world to break!!! Keep it up.

Kindest regards,
Mary
1993 Detroit 2008 Kitchener June 2-Hamilton June 3 & 4-Vienna Sept 24 & 25-London RAH Nov 17 2009 NYC Feb 19-Grand Prairie Apr 3-Phoenix Apr 5-Columbia May 11-Red Rocks Jun 4-Barcelona Sept 21-Columbus Oct 27-Las Vegas Nov 12-San Jose Nov 13 2010 Sligo Jul 31 & Aug 1-LV Dec 10 & 11 2012 Paris Sept 30-London Dec 11-Boston Dec 16 2013 Louisville Mar 30-Amsterdam Sept 20
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B4real
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Re: Leonard, smoking..and me

Postby B4real » Sun Feb 20, 2011 1:34 am

Hi Andrew,

I'm here to tell you that what you have achieved so far is wonderful :D Now I will say that giving up nicotine for good is a major hurdle because it is the hardest drug to give up even more so than heroin! But did you know that there is something even more powerful than that. It is the most powerful thing in the world - A Thought! Nothing happens without it - good or evil - babies wouldn't be conceived, wars started etc. And what is a thought? It is an electrical impulse. And what are your cells made of? Electrical impulses. So what you think is what you get! I know that I have simplified the process but keep thinking positive and you will continue to be successful. Remember, it is you who are in control of your thoughts and only you can make this change happen for good.

How do I know this works? I have been there where you are right now many, many times (two months is the danger period) and thought I couldn't even attempt a painting or drawing without a smoke in my hand. Somehow I thought my mind just wouldn't function without it. But it did and it does. I haven't smoked for over twenty years now. I am so pleased that I perservered when I felt like just giving in again - trust me, I was an expert in giving up! I used to chew nicorettes and smoke cigs alternatively! Nicorettes were a great way to smoke in the shower because your cig wouldn't get wet. :razz:

Just know that the only way to take back control is to keep strong and just do it! You will still want a cigarette for some time to come but the craving will get less and less stronger. You won't really feel comfortable about it for months but you will be successful in the end. There really is no secret to this, you just have to want to give up for ever. You are well on your way - stay strong and you will win.

Bev

PS You may want to change your avatar to reflect the new you ;-)
It doesn't have to be perfect, it just has to B4real ~ me
Attitude is a self-fulfilling prophecy ~ me ...... The magic of art is the truth of its lies ~ me ...... Only left-handers are in their right mind!
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lizzytysh
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Re: Leonard, smoking..and me

Postby lizzytysh » Sun Feb 20, 2011 5:20 am

Hi Andrew ~

Congratulations from me, too! Please let me know if you have 'smoking dreams' like alcoholics do about starting drinking again. When I quit in 1975 [at 4 packs/day], I would wake up panic-stricken from a dream that I was having a cigarette... and thought "Oh NO! I started again!!" and then realized it had just been a dream. So many good changes happened as time went on, and it's SO worth sticking to having quit! It impacts every one of our bodily systems and then some... you've done a great thing, and I hope your public declaration of it will be the girding to keeping it so.


~ Lizzy
"Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken."
~ Oscar Wilde
seadove
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Re: Leonard, smoking..and me

Postby seadove » Tue Feb 22, 2011 9:00 am

I started smoking back when I was a toddler way before 1965. At first I smoked indirectly (my family used to smoke on me) and then later on I smoked about two packs a day. I made 40 attempts to stop smoking until I finally succeeded in July 5th, 1982.

For a week I suffered like hell until I calmed down and now I cannot bear anyone smoking in my presence. If I enter a hotel room, for example, I would know that people smoked there or not. I won't take a smoking room for myself in any hotel.

So keep it going! :D
Andrew McGeever
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Re: Leonard, smoking..and me

Postby Andrew McGeever » Fri Feb 25, 2011 3:33 am

To those who have replied,
your posts have been a source of strength, yet there's something left, something to be said, and it's this:
the supreme cigarette moments are associated with: writing,alcohol, sex, music, and not necessarily in that order.
There are many more.
Please post your own best cigarette moment.
Jarkko, tell Leonard about this thread: it's partly his fault I started smoking.

Andrew
.
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A.Sukitu
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Re: Leonard, smoking..and me

Postby A.Sukitu » Tue Mar 01, 2011 9:07 pm

Andrew -
well done and stay with it!
Smoking is a lie - it is an excuse to be careless with time...
I've always been harrowed by the thought of Leonard going through a ghastly procedure to put a camera up his nose and down his throat to see if there was any evidence of cancer ...
Don't be suicidal with time. Smoking is not romantic or cool or edgy. It is the most malodorous drug ever. Just remember that when you smoke you are helping to hold up the financing of the government. There are easier ways to throw away money...
Stay clean!
"You let me sing, you lifted me up, you gave my soul a beam to travel on. ... You gave the injury a tongue to heal itself."
Leonard Cohen in Book of Mercy (1984) Ch. 19.
Andrew McGeever
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Re: Leonard, smoking..and me

Postby Andrew McGeever » Sat Mar 05, 2011 3:55 am

The best movies, the ones that moulded my life, all involved cigarettes..full strength...maximum hit...get it in there now, or sooner.next time
I miss smoking: so much of my daily routine revolved around cigarettes: thinking about when's the next/ best time to have one, enough left for tonight, tomorrow morning, the newsagent opens at 5.30 am, that's good, and so on and so on....
People like Leonard Cohen , Bob Dylan, Keith Richard, John Lennon, the RAF in WW2, the 51st Highland Division, most Greek males , many French females, and every bi-sexual resident in Valencia Street in San Fransisco, the women queuing up for the Bingo on Bath Street, every coal miner , and Bill Hicks,......it's people like you who've made me who I am.
Three months, no cigarettes.
Right now I could die for one.
But I won't, for I'm good at playing games, and shielding desire.

Andrew.
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lizzytysh
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Re: Leonard, smoking..and me

Postby lizzytysh » Sat Mar 05, 2011 3:55 pm

YAAAY, Andrew!!! And you'll live longer and feel better as a result. It takes awhile to appreciate the differences, but you will. Wait til summer arrives and you can actually smell it again. What prompted you to quit? Was it a doctor's warning or something that came from within? The body often gives us the messages we need to know. They suddenly just appear in thought.

Keep on keepin' on... you're doing it! It's tough but you're doing it :D .


~ Lizzy
"Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken."
~ Oscar Wilde
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A.Sukitu
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Re: Leonard, smoking..and me

Postby A.Sukitu » Sat Mar 05, 2011 10:38 pm

Andrew -
why is Leonard alive? ...coz he stopped smoking before it killed him. (and we all know the "oh, X lived till 100 years old and smoked 100 a day" - but how many Xs survive this long? I wouldn't bet on it ...).
As a Calvanist Scot, what helped me through was to suffer - to bite the carpet and weep. I recognise the cravings ... they do dilute ...
What you need to find is a non-smoking role model (Leonard!!! ?)
and a non-smoking way of life. Difficult ... and releasing.
Keep the Faith, Andrew -
A
"You let me sing, you lifted me up, you gave my soul a beam to travel on. ... You gave the injury a tongue to heal itself."
Leonard Cohen in Book of Mercy (1984) Ch. 19.
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B4real
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Re: Leonard, smoking..and me

Postby B4real » Sun Mar 06, 2011 8:09 am

Hi again Andrew,
Andrew McGeever wrote:Three months, no cigarettes.
That is so wonderful!!

Remember, only you can control your thoughts. Don't grieve for something that really didn't exist! Those things you said and did in the past would still turn out the same (and better) without having to be a slave to a cigarette. Keep it up. You are doing so well.

I thought you might like to look at Dr H Guy's site and see how (amongst other incentives) Leonard gave up smoking.
http://1heckofaguy.com/2008/08/17/leona ... troubador/

....and speaking of the marlboro man (three of them in fact) -
http://www.allvoices.com/contributed-ne ... cer-ironic

Just know that you will get there in the end - DON'T look back! Look FORWARD!
It doesn't have to be perfect, it just has to B4real ~ me
Attitude is a self-fulfilling prophecy ~ me ...... The magic of art is the truth of its lies ~ me ...... Only left-handers are in their right mind!
wornoutcowboy
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Re: Leonard, smoking..and me

Postby wornoutcowboy » Thu Mar 10, 2011 4:21 am

Dear Andrew:
Perhaps I can help. I too spent years smoking and did I mention I spent years smoking? It was my career I think and like you I associated it with all good and bad things in my life. With the exception of Patti Smith all of my favorite people smoke or smoked' My quitting process has been one that has taken over a year and I did have a relapse in it but have been off the evil weed for 5 months now and can honestly say I don't miss it so much. I figure it was all about time and place. Now, on to Leonard. Within the past year I had read that LC quit smoking at the age of 69 and felt very disappoited being I quit at an earlier age. In other words I almost thought that I had quite a few good smoking years left being LC got away with it until he was 69. Do I think that now? Not really. It is funny about addiction. We put some distance between us and it and it all seems like a stranger after a while. There is a part of me that will always admire and long for the smoking me but on the other hand I do know time is up. You didn't mention that all Japanese men seem to smoke. I have always loved that about Japanese men. They do do a great cigarette.
Andrew McGeever
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Re: Leonard, smoking..and me

Postby Andrew McGeever » Thu Mar 10, 2011 11:01 pm

Dear all,
Thankyou for the replies, especially those who engaged in the heart and lungs of the matter.
I'm still clean :D , and hope to remain so for the rest of my life 8) .
Getting back to Leonard, if he can do it, why can't Keith Richards, or Kate Moss (on the cat-walk yesterday), or Nick Clegg?
Yesterday, March 9th, was "national no smoking day" in the U.K.
For the first time in my life, I identified with that ambition.
Right now I'm thinking, if Leonard can do it, for f***s sake, so can I.
Yet check out the cover of Leonard's "Stranger Music" anthology: that is one enlightened cigarette picture/ moment.
Lizzy, It was the fact of becoming a grandad, times two,that pushed me over the edge: I want to stay alive to see and help Arlo and Liam to grow,learn and love. Oh yes, these bairns are already hearing...Brian Wilson, Bob Dylan, Beatles, Neil Young, :D .
That's all for now: I have work tomorrow.

Andrew.

P.S. There's a book called "Forever Young", and my two grandchildren have it.
This is one of the most beautiful books ever written for children: lyrics, of course, by Bob Dylan.
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lizzytysh
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Re: Leonard, smoking..and me

Postby lizzytysh » Fri Mar 11, 2011 3:11 am

Thanks for the review... the song is a pinnacle one for me. I would LOVE to have the book! Thanks for the back story on your quitting. Never a nobler reason. Good on you, Andrew. I did it and so can you.


~ Lizzy
"Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken."
~ Oscar Wilde
seadove
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Re: Leonard, smoking..and me

Postby seadove » Fri Mar 11, 2011 9:18 am

They asked me how I knew
My true love was true
Oh, I of course replied
Something here inside cannot be denied

They said someday you'll find
All who love are blind
Oh, when your heart's on fire
You must realize
Smoke gets in your eyes

So I chaffed them and I gaily laughed
To think they could doubt my love
Yet today my love has flown away
I am without my love

Now laughing friends deride
Tears I can not hide
Oh, so I smile and say
When a lovely flame dies
Smoke gets in your eyes
Smoke gets in your eyes

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