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Non smoking bars and restaurants on the Riviera

Posted by Eric318 - Created: 15 years ago
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9 replies (Showing replies: 1 to 9)

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Posted by mike-179830 - 14 years ago

Not everyone here is called Mike - that's just an illusion caused by the fact that it's Friday.

The plain fact is that France has a smoking culture. The draconian anti-smoking legislation is irrelevant to the day-to-day life of the country (and can be seen to be so, with the grand total of people prosecuted under it over the last decade being... well, fewer than one, if you must know).

It is a mistake - as a lawyer well-versed in both US and French law pointed out to me - to judge the way a country behaves by its legal system alone. Its inherent culture is a major factor and influences - and in all nations this is true - the way that laws are interpreted by everyone from the judiciary and the police system to the general public.

And in France, it is seen as a fundamental human right to light up a gasper whenever and wherever you may want to.

Even non-smokers, as a rule, accept this as normal. Therefore anti-smokers (a different sociological group, if typically a subset of non-smokers) are heavily out-numbered, and seen as repressive, intolerant buffoons. Compare and contrast with (say) California, where even the smokers are anti-smoking...

Over to you, Mike...

**************
Mike

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Posted by dublinmike-182617 - 14 years ago

And another thing, is everyone here called Mike???

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Posted by dublinmike-182617 - 14 years ago

Wahoo!! A tepid discussion at last.

The rule of thumb seems to be (according to two bar owner friends) is that non-smokers do not spend as much as smokers. It has something to do with drinking lots while smoking too much.

As a smoker I concur, every smoker goes through many more cigarettes when they are drinking, but only bar owners realise that smokers go through more drinks when they are smoking!! It's a two-handed sport for smokers.

I have alternated between being a smoker and a non-smoker, but invariably and despite the best efforts of everyone to tell me the opposite....non-smoking venues and areas SEEM to be full of quite boring people and couples with nothing to say to each other.

Of course this is a big generalisation but I'm using it to make the bar owners point. Bottom line is that no-one, smoker or not wants to be in a place full of boring people.

Perhaps (and maybe we need a psychotherapist to look into this) the laissez-faire attitude of someone who's prepared to die for their fun is a little more how shall I say.........playful and irresponsible, and quite possibly as a result ...more fun.

I don't know....you tell me.

Mike

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Posted by gofrance - 14 years ago

Oh, I completely agree, and also did not want to touch off a debate. It just seems that so many times there is no empathy or consideration whatsoever to smokers. I wanted to get that perspective in. We are about to move to France this fall... and I am still in America, where smokers are banished everywhere. Many major cities (New York, Boston, L.A. years ago) ban all smoking in every bar. That is what bothers me. I can even understand banning it in restaurants, since that is pretty gross. But if I am having a drink, I don't want to be told I can't light up. Anyway, I hope I didn't come across too strong. I agree with most of what you guys are saying. I just wanted to mention that smokers don't especially enjoy this situation either.

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Posted by MikeP-180526 - 14 years ago

Gofrance

Your comments are fair as far as they go.  I am not attempting to deny the right of smokers to smoke.  As Eric said : "your money, your lungs."

However,  your (assuming that you are a smoker) vice impacts both the duration and the quality of other peoples' lives IF YOU DO IT NEAR THEM.  This is an important point.  There are other vices,  such as drinking and driving which also place other people at risk.  We do not have the right to do this.

This was not meant to turn into a smokers vs. non smokers debate and I am sorry for my part in turning it into one! 

I don't have anything against smokers provided that they do not pollute the air that the rest of us breathe.  One of my best friends is a smoker (really)!  It is just a question of respect - BOTH WAYS - for each others' sensitivities.

 

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Posted by gofrance - 14 years ago

You said:"If you are a smoker you will never understand how unpleasant cigarette smoke can be for non smokers, quite apart from the fact that you do not have the right to poison the air that we breathe."Sorry... I hate to interect. I agree smoking should be controlled, and certainly you should be able to eat without breathing fumes. Smokers, however, should also have the right to smoke SOMEWHERE. Your comment that smokers simply don't understand how rough it is to be a non-smoker is a bit self-absorbed. I would say non-smokers have no clue what it is like to be smokers, addicted to cigarettes but constantly being told they can't smoke anywhere and condemned and criticized at every turn. I'm sure you have a vice of some sort. What if you had to jump through a million hoops, pay 100 percent plus taxes and stand outside in the rain every time you wanted a cup of coffee? Or something sweet to eat? Or a glass of wine? You complain that you can't have a nice meal out. What if you were banned from dining unless you did it outside? And none of those things are remotely as addictive as cigarettes.

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Posted by MikeP-180526 - 14 years ago

Sitting on a terrace is not much of an option in the winter, especially in the evenings, and even outdoors enjoyment of a meal or a glass of wine can be spoilt by the pollution of cigarette smoke (and cars, motorbikes etc - I'm not only blaming the smokers!).

If you are a smoker you will never understand how unpleasant cigarette smoke can be for non smokers, quite apart from the fact that you do not have the right to poison the air that we breathe.

In any case,  asking people to smoke only in one area of a restaurant is about as helpful as asking people to only urinate in one part of the swimming pool.

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Posted by Peacock-187994 - 14 years ago

quote:We have given up on going out to public places for this reason

Good luck in your search chaps, I unfortunately do not know of any such establishments either but come on MikeP, lighten up (excuse the pun)!! Sit on a terrace or something..............................................

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Posted by MikeP-180526 - 14 years ago

If anyone knows of such places,  (or even places where the law is enforced so that those of who chose not to smoke are not forced to breathe the poison fumes of the smokers) please post the names here.  Such establishments deserve support.

The usual response here when you ask for 'non-smoking' is the much loved Gallic shrug, and then, if you are lucky,  you get shown to a table outside in the rain (in winter) or by the toilets.

To answer your question Eric,  I don't know of any, and I doubt if they exist.  We have given up on going out to public places for this reason.