Beginning this Sunday, 1 August, the city of Ithaca begins a ban on smoking on central areas of the pedestrian mall Commons, and in Cass and Stewart Parks.
We own a business on the Commons (Angry Mom Records/Small World Music, in the basement of Autumn Leaves Books), and applaud the move. We think it's the right thing to do, in terms of creating a clean environment and promoting health.
We don't think it will hurt business any. You can't smoke in the Pyramid Mall, either.
We are happy with the idea of no cigarette butts littering the Commons. We once heard that it takes 7 years for a cigarette butt to disintegrate, although we do not know who watched it.
A few years ago, our friend Rafiki was helping us move. We got out of the car and went to my building. Rafiki stopped at the entrance.
"You go ahead. I'll be right up," he said. "I'm going to smoke."
"It's alright," I said. "You can smoke inside. It's February." It was cold.
"That's alright," he said. "I'm used to smoking between buildings and cars."
Now, in Ithaca, it gets a little harder. But a little better.
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