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Its tobacco, Officer. I swear.

CNN has a story about the public smoking ban in the U.K. putting the kibosh on smoking Shisha in public [via].

Imagine denying a Brit a pint or banning a Swede from a sauna.

Hard to contemplate. Yet many Middle Easterners in England are trying to come to terms with a new reality — life without the shisha.

This story really makes me sad. I am quite fond of smoking flavored tobacco out of these beautiful water pipes, especially in the quaint Tea Rooms around Manhattan. My favorite is the Tea Room on Fourth Avenue and 91st Street in Brooklyn. On any given night, you’ll see Middle Eastern people, trendy hipsters, and guidos (I use the term in the most endearing way) all grouped around their hookahs, drinking tea or beer and chatting peacefully while the TV plays either a soccer game or a news program on Arab Television. I really enjoy the delicious, flavored smoke, which some find offensive, as I walk by. And I don’t care who you are, it beats the smell of fifty sticks of burning incense on a card table outside Penn Station anyday. For those of you who have never tried it, smoking a hookah with a group of friends is a very pleasant, mellow thing to do. If you’re afraid to try it because you don’t want to get lung cancer, grow up. We’re all going to kick it some day anyway.

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March 11, 2006 - Posted by | Brooklyn, New York City, shisha

1 Comment »

  1. Remember when we were politely pushed out of the Tea Room? They started turning off the TV and music. But you were refusing to leave because other people were still in there smoking. That was funny. Too think this can’t happen in England, that is sad.

    Comment by Noy | March 12, 2006 | Reply


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