Blowing Smoke At The Hot Air

| Working | June 25, 2015

(I occasionally smoke, which is well-known to my coworkers.)

Coworker: *on the phone* “I’m having some trouble with my analysis. Do you think you can take a look at it?”

Me: “Sure, send me your analysis and I’ll check it.”

Coworker: “But I can only trust you to check it if you haven’t smoked today. Have you smoked today?”

Me: “Tobacco use hardly makes me less capable of checking your work, but I guess if it’s that important to you, no, I haven’t smoked today.”

Coworker: “And you promise not to smoke before my deadline? So that I can trust your checks on my program?”

Me: “Um, I smoke only tobacco, not drugs of any kind. I can’t promise you that I won’t smoke before your deadline in a week, but I will promise you that I won’t examine your analysis while using alcohol or illegal substances between now and your deadline. Does that work? It’s not like a cig makes me high or anything.”

Coworker: “Nevermind, if you can’t guarantee your sobriety while you examine my analysis, your input is worthless.”

(A couple of months later, after I have successfully quit smoking.)

Coworker: *over email* “I need someone to check my analysis. Can you do it? But I only trust you if you haven’t smoked.”

Me: “I actually quit a few months ago, so you can trust me to look at it.”

Coworker: “That’s good to hear, so go ahead and check it. However, I will not meet with you in person unless you can guarantee that all of your clothes are new since you quit smoking. Third-hand smoke can still kill!”

(I’d like to ask him what he does when he walks by someone smoking in public, but I’m afraid of the answer…)

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