This morning as I was waiting for my cinnamon raisin bagel to be toasted, buttered and added to the rest of my breakfast purchase from the corner deli, I spied the Dunhills in the cigarette display behind the counter. Ahhhh the thought of just having one cigarette, really enjoying a good smoke entered my mind.

I’ve been a little stressed lately, so I’ve found myself thinking about it more frequently than I’ve become accustomed too. Of course once I actually smell the smoke of anyone else’s cigarettes, or even that lingering stench of stale smoke on any smoker, I remember one of the reasons I don’t do that anymore. But I digress…

As I stood there in my reverie, suddenly, like a needle scratching an old LP I heard the cashier say “$7.25” to a man who had just asked for a pack of Marlboro Lights.

“Holy shit, you’re kidding?!,” I said.

“Nope, said tall reasonably healthy looking gentleman, that’s what they cost.”

“I’m so glad I quit.”

The guy asked what they cost when I quit — about $5 per pack (of course Dunhills were more expensive being imports hereabouts). “Still too expensive,” I said. He smiled and we laughed, and he took his cigarettes and left.

I still can’t get over the price. You can get a great lunch (even dinner!) for $7.25 (tax included).

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