i used to be unnaturally drawn to people who smoked cigarettes when i was a younger. the goth, emo teenager, with black finger nails and ripped jeans waiting at a bus stop, the forty-something single mom i baby-sat for, who wore shimmering red nails and drank her beer in wine glasses, the laid-back wife, of a gambling man, who kept cigarettes pursed between her lips, no hands, yet, never dropping it while she spoke.
sprawled across my girlfriend's bed while she vented about life's ills, parting and curling pieces of her newly dyed red hair, i secretly longed to take pictures of her smoking. fevered drags and exasperated exhales and a cigarette fashioned between two fingers. i listened and nodded and gave appropriate "oh no she didn't" retorts while my mind snapped mental pictures freezing the moments she released frustrated sighs and spiraling smoke. but, like me, i know she bares her vices in the dark, so asking her to take pictures was practically pointless (as she wouldn't even let me shoot her hands due to the identity telling tattoos on them). so, in the end, i simply settled for the next best thing(s): the typical paraphernalia of a typical smoker.