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The San Rafael city council recently passed an ordinance that makes it illegal to smoke in your own home. The excuse ‘logic’ for this breathtaking coup of social engineering is, you guessed it, ‘public health and safety.’ The same reasoning that brought you Prohibition, anti-sodomy laws and bans on interracial marriage now invites the police into your home to snuff out your Marlboro. Cigarettes probably don’t matter to most gun owners, so why should we care? . . .

Any Government With The Power To Give You Everything You Need, Also Has The Power To Take It Away

San Rafael’s shocking intrusion into private homes applies to all multi-family residence (condos, apartments, duplexes, co-ops) of three or more units, and to any unit which shares a common wall with another residence. The only homes you can smoke in are completely separate single-family homes.

Despite the fact that it tells you what you can do in the privacy of your own home, city officials insist that this rule isn’t an intrusion into your privacy. They say they don’t care if you smoke in your home (yeah, right) but that this new rule is needed because without it a few molecules of Marlboro smoke might seep through two layers drywall and four inches of insulation and contaminate the apartment next door.

Secondhand smoke seeps through drywall and kills people who live in separately heated and ventilated apartments? Dictating what you do by yourself in your own home isn’t an invasion of privacy? What bullshit.

For a bunch of non-smokers, the San Rafael city council is sure blowing a lot of smoke up our asses.

One Rule For Them, Another Rule For Us

The ‘separate housing unit’carve-out will largely exempt San Rafael’s ruling class (and the city council) from having to live under the law they just passed.

San Rafael happens to be the county seat of ultra-expensive Marin County, just across the Golden Gate bridge from San Francisco. Census figures show that San Rafael has a population density of more than 2,500 people per square mile. Almost 49% of San Rafael’s 60,000 residents live in rental housing, and almost all of them are now prohibited from smoking in their own homes. That 49% doesn’t even include thousands more who live in condos, or in their own duplex. When you combine apartment and condo and duplex dwellers, way more than half of the population will now have the police at their door if they have a smoke at home.

Only the wealthiest San Rafaelitos, who happen to own their own detached single-family homes, are exempt from this new government intrusion. According to Zillow, the average price for a detached single-family home in San Rafael is $817,000. This is almost twice the $430,000 average price for condos and co-ops.

How many students and working stiffs can take out an $800,000 home loan without selling either both kidneys or several pounds of uncut methamphetamine? None of them. They have to leave their homes (and stand at least 20 feet from an entrance or window) to have a smoke.

How many of San Rafael’s upper crust might enjoy a Cohiba and a single-malt in their living room after dinner? Plenty. How clever of them to make sure the cops won’t mind.

‘The majestic equality of the law’ may prohibit the wealthy as well as the poor from sleeping under the bridges, from begging in the streets, and from stealing bread, as Anatole France observed. But it still allows the wealthy to smoke in their $800,000 homes, while the rest of the San Rafael peasantry cannot.

Why This Matters

The ‘logic’ of the San Rafael smoking ban can be used to justify absolutely any nanny-state rule you could imagine. By combining a concern for ‘public health and safety’ with bad science (or no science at all, as in this case) governments could prohibit smoking, drinking, gambling, martial arts training, fried foods, popular music, video games, big trucks, Big Gulps, fast motorcycles, salt shakers and sugar bowls. In many of these cases, it has already tried.

We care because our guns will be banned first. And our knives. And magazines. And ammunition. But only for us, because the Dianne Feinsteins and Donald Trumps and Michael Bloombergs of this world will always have their own CCW permits and their (often taxpayer-funded) security details.

The only thing standing between them and us is the Second Amendment. Keep it strong.

News link here.

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    • Marin County is a bit more nanny/NIMBY even than most of the rest of CA. They are regularly disparaged for their excessive oppressiveness, even in San Francisco. As they say, let the North Peninsula sink back into the Pacific.

      The South and East Bay, on the other hand, are becoming increasingly more firearms and rights friendly (at least among the inhabitants). Heck, I know of 2 new gun stores that opened within 20 mins of my home just this year, and the local range is always busy and loud, mostly with good people who completely break the gun-owner stereotype by being young, highly educated (I was in the lane next to 2 UC Berkeley profs, and a grad student last week), and not solely of European descent.

      • Pretty sure they said “let CA fall into the ocean”, I just hope the few good folks left get out 🙂

      • SWAT teams, that’s how. The thugs with badges will smell cigarette smoke, break into the apartment, immediately shoot the dogs and make up a story (cops lie all the time) that they smelled marijuana smoke.

        • In CA I would think that pot smoke is OK inside, but not tobacco smoke. So the cops probably would get less bad publicity if they didn’t make up a story about smelling pot smoke.

      • That’s just it. They claim there is no privacy issue, but if you are in the privacy of your domicile when you light up, I fail to see how this ordinance could be enforce WITHOUT violating said privacy – it cannot. Therefore there is a privacy issue.

  1. This seems like it’s just ripe for bad publicity. Of course, someone will have to have their life turned upside down and be dragged through the court system for that to happen, but still…

  2. I can’t think of ANY reason anymore to go there. I don’t care if it’s my best friend’s wedding or funeral. I will no more visit California than I will North Korea.

    And I don’t even smoke anymore.

  3. Silly law and it will be struck down at the first challenge.

    City councils do stupid stuff like this all the time in the name of “health and safety”. That’s code for BS. Anytime you see that you know they just cost the city thousands to fight BS lawsuits.

    • One wonders 1) how these little Napoleons get elected and 2) why they would ever think it should be the responsibility of their city governments to even consider getting involved in such matters.

  4. Better not be able to drink in your house, either, lest you bump a wall and wake up your neighbor’s cat.

  5. I’ll guess that the person who wrote this story is a smoker.

    Speaking as a nonsmoker, I would point out that when you live in a multi-unit residence, you are not smoking “in the privacy of your own home”. The smoke ALWAYS wafts into your neighboring apartments.

    So in reality, you are saying that the right to smoke in your own home trumps the inconvenience that the second-hand smoke causes to your neighbors.

    It is a perfectly rational belief, but you must accept the possibility that your neighbors’ calculus is not the same as yours. They have a right to (as it is often worded) “quiet enjoyment” of their homes as well, and that right is easily infringed by your barking dogs, loud stereo, and smelly cigarette smoke.

    But if you want to put a stake in the ground on this issue:

    Does your neighbor (who for arguments sake lives in a state that has legal marijuana) have a right to enjoy his marijuana in the privacy of his own home, regardless of whether the marijuana fumes enter into the bedroom of your sleeping toddlers?

    I thought not.

    So the only possible analog to guns here is if the smell of Hoppes #9 irritates your neighbor, and personally, I say you should use that shit in the garage or outdoors!

      • They have a right to (as it is often worded) “quiet enjoyment” of their homes as well, and that right is easily infringed by your barking dogs, loud stereo, and…

        ….screaming toddlers?

        • Oh I want a law that annoying, rotten, bratty and screaming kids must be immediately removed from the area and taken to a “please start hitting your child” designated area.

    • So, if someone objects to the cooking smell of a neighbor, then that type of food can legally be banned by the city government?

      Sorry, but unless something actually endangers you, you have no legal authority to prevent it.

      • The connection between second-hand smoke and, say, lung cancer is tenuous at best. But the connection between second-hand smoke and asthma and other respiratory illnesses is well-supported by research.

        Again, you have two positions that are both rational: that you are free to smoke in your “own” property, and that you are free to live there without breathing tobacco particles from your neighbor.

        If the law attempted to ban smoking in a private residence that had no abutters, I would be all over it as unconstitutional. But you simply cannot say that smoking in an apartment that has abutters has no impact on them, or that it is for you as the smoker to decide whether that impact is “significant”. There is a reason that smoking bans in public places have been so successful. It’s because people are sick and tired of breathing other people’s tobacco smoke.

        The next battle ground here will be smoking in outdoor public places… watch for it.

        • Dude, just get bent.

          They might as well ban cigarettes entirely at this point. There’s no way in hell you’re going to be able to get 20 feet from the doors and windows in most places without getting within 20 feet of doors or windows on another unit. Next thing ya’ll are gonna kvetch about is smelling the clothes of a smoker. Did you know breathing the air in the bay area is probably worse for you than the smoke in your neighbor’s unit?

          Seriously. Get. Bent.
          And I quit smoking over 6 years ago.

        • I don’t smoke, in fact, I can’t stand the smell of cigarette smoke at all, it makes me ill. I can tell if someone on the freeway is smoking.

          But here’s the thing “that you are free to live there without breathing tobacco particles from your neighbor.” there is no such thing as to be free of something. My neighbors are not my property, they may have smells, or sounds that I don’t like. Too bad. I don’t get to control their lives.

          My neighbors get to smoke, even if I personally hate smoking, because it’s their lives, not mine.

        • The smell of BS and hypocrisy are strong in this one. I wonder if he remembered to renew his G.A.S.P. membership.

    • Unless you own that ‘multi-residence’ property, what right do you have to dictate what I can and cannot do in the privacy of my own home?

      You have every right to not live there if you are concerned for the welfare of your children. You are being an irresponsible parent by not taking action to preserve the welfare of your children. You have the choices same as I have choices But those are mine to make within the confines of my castle. If you don’t appreciate that, then carry on.

      • If your actions are leaving the bounds of your home and infecting the neighbor’s, it isn’t just about doing something in the privacy of your own home. The same applies to noise and pollution. You do not have the right to play music as loud as you want at the expense of your neighbors. You do not have a right to cause a fire hazard in your apartment, or to fail to maintain a cleanly living space (if your living conditions are so bad as to begin to pollute the neighbor’s home, the government can intervene).

        It must be admitted that actions in one’s residence are not wholly separated from the outside world (this is the same reason you can’t just dump trash anywhere on your property). If your actions are affecting the well-being of others around you, they CAN (and should) be regulated.

        That said, a full-on ban is absurd. It is not as if EVERYONE smoking in their home is spilling smoke into a neighbor’s house, just as not everyone listening to music will exceed legal decibel levels at a neighbor’s residence. The law should be about seepage, essentially banning smoking in such a way that a bystanders home is polluted by one’s smoking.

    • I totally agree. I once live in an apartment building with smokers in other apartments, and some nights I had to go sleep on the floor in the closet because the fumes were so bad.

      When discussing rights, we generally agree that the only limit of individual rights is when they infringe on the rights of others. Well, these “multi-family” housing units make everyone in them subject to the putrid stuff people feel they have a right to spew wherever they please.

      My right to breathe comes before your right to smoke, and I have a right to breathe in evert place I am legally allowed to be.

      • My right to breathe comes before your right to smoke

        OK, I’ll play.

        You need to make sure your exhaled CO2, H2O, and other fumes don’t make it into the air I’m breathing. I also don’t want to inhale your cologne or the fragrances in your laundry detergent, whether it’s because you walk near me or because your clothes dryer vent is within 100 yards of my house and there’s a slight breeze. Don’t you dare barbeque, run a fireplace, or let your furnace, water heater, or clothes dryer combustion exhaust come anywhere near me. If I so much as smell a hint of your car’s exhaust, I’ll sue. Don’t even think of passing gas in my general vicinity.

        My right to breathe comes before your rights to creature comforts.

        • Someone has a chip on their shoulder. You’re actually comparing the smell of cologne, barbeque, and clean laundry to the smell of tobacco smoke. Seeing as you are a smoker, it’s no surprise that you have zero understanding of the discomfort and offense you cause air-breathers,and even less surprising that you don’t care to stick your nose out of your ignorance box and consider what you’re doing.

          Instead we get straw-man arguments from you, just like we get from the anti-gunners. Water heater exhaust? Oh please.

      • I hate smoke. I’m glad people can’t smoke in planes, malls, any place to eat and anywhere I go. But, if someone wants to smoke in his own residence or car, then that’s nobody’s business. If it’s leaking into your residence, then put in better barriers between your two residences. If you can’t afford to do that, move to a no smoking residence.

        • As a smoker, I don’t miss smoking (or the smell of smoke) in airplanes and restaurants.

          I do wish we could still smoke in bars (subject to the owner’s choice, of course). It’s not like people patronize such establishments for health purposes. And those that work there, and who object to tobacco smoke, would be free to seek employment in establishments whose proprietors prohibit smoking.

        • Ah, but the same could be said of all property rights. YOU have to decide if the food is worth the fact that the owner of that business allows smoking. If enough people complain, maybe that owner will change their policy on smoking. However using the threat of violence from the government to violate property rights is OK. Why is not allowing you to smoke in your own home violating rights anymore than the restaurant’s owner? They pay the mortgage, utilities and property taxes. Rights are rights.

          I quit smoking 20 years ago, so I don’t care personally. However violating rights bother me even if it’s something I don’t like or do myself. Someday it very well might be something I do enjoy.

    • If it is a problem, the individuals can sort it out. You know, put on their big boy underwear (or big girl panties, if you prefer) and sort it out like adults. The government does not need to regulate such matters.

      But I guess that’s too much to ask in the infantilized society we live in. You know, adults acting like adults and taking care of themselves.

    • You are advocating violence to solve a social issue. Stop it. Everything government does is done at the point of a gun. All laws are commands to “do what we say or else”. And that “or else” is backed by heavily armed paramilitary forces (AKA “law enforcement”).

    • “Speaking as a nonsmoker, I would point out that when you live in a multi-unit residence, you are not smoking “in the privacy of your own home”. The smoke ALWAYS wafts into your neighboring apartments.”

      That’s nothing but the Big Lie. there is ABSOLUTELY NO evidence of second-hand smoke seeping through walls, or even out one window and in another, if the unit is sufficiently ventilates.

      That kind of crap should be nullified by simply not complying.

    • I don’t think my neighbors should own guns because it scares me. They only mow their lawn every 2 weeks. I saw them drinking beers on their front porch, what if kids saw? That car parked on the curb hasn’t moved for over a week now, its making the neighborhood look trashy. The HOA says we aren’t allowed to have more than 2 trees in our front yard, why should they?

      I am this freaking close to moving to Alaska, marching off into the wild, and becoming a hermit. So sick of stupid people.

    • Dead wrong, my friend. I probably smoked a handful of cigs in college before realizing how dreadful they were, and in my 45 years I’ve probably puffed twenty cigars at weddings or parties.

      I’m 100% in favor of landlords who prohibit smoking in their rental units, because that’s one of the prerogatives of property ownership.

      It’s not about tobacco. It’s about rights. It’s about liberty.

    • Totally AGREE with you. Smokers are disgusting! This was posted on another conservative CA site and I completely agree with you. I HATE SMOKERS and the smoke seeps into your apt!

  6. Not only is that not legal it is not constitutional by any stretch of the imagination. However in the communist state of California nothing surprises me.

    • I kind of wish they would have banned sex at my old apartment.. I heard my neighbors loudly going at it several times per week. It was amusing the first time, but got old quick.

      • Especially when it’s the two hogs downstairs and you keep hearing “Get your finger outta my _ _ _!” I could barely look at those two outside.

        • I lived in a 4 family and the neighbors above were very similar. I ordered a ball gag from a fetish shop and had it delivered to them. Things quieted down after that, either because they got the message or used their “gift” to great effect.

      • If the noise is bothering you, then you _do_ have a legitimate complaint. But usually reasonable people work these things out without needing Big Brither to intrude. It’s just sad and frightening that the unreasonable are starting to outnumber the reasonable.

  7. I’ll probably regret posting this, but there is some cause for this new law. In some of the older apartment buildings, the smoke really does get into other people’s apartments, and its not a trivial amount of smoke. If you are elderly and don’t get out much, what do you do when people smoke in the hallway or on a shared balcony? Or, if the HVAC systems are so old, that you get smoke coming in from the ducts?

    It sucks that government had to pass a law because some assholes cannot be considerate of older people.

    Go ahead, crucify me.

    • What’s next? Banning grilling on your patio? Banning the use of a fireplace? Is tobacco smoke any more toxic than the emissions from burning wood, charcoal lighter, newspaper, or meat and marinade drippings?

      How about all of the CO2, CO, and other crap coming from gas-fired furnaces, water heaters, clothes dryers, and cooking appliances? Back when I lived in a condo and shared common walls with neighbors on two sides, I was nauseated when the neighbors on one side dried their clothes – the stench of whatever they used poured right out of their dryer vent and into my home. I didn’t ask for .gov assistance – I moved.

      • Denver-get this-capital of the state that just legalized recreational pot smoking-has just passed an ordinance that bans smoking weed on private property if visible from the sidewalk. It passed city council on first reading and the final vote is Monday.Which means you won’t be able to sit on your front porch and do it.

        Not being a pot smoker, I find it amusing, but it’s disturbing nonetheless.

        • Yeah, I alluded to that a little while ago (a few posts below).

          Weird. I did like the “demonstrator” who appeared on the local news; he lined up various containers of alcohol on his balcony (right next to a public sidewalk), then proceeded to have a few drinks. His point was “the idea was to treat marijuana like alcohol, but now we have different definitions of ‘in public’ when we talk about consuming either alcohol or marijuana ‘in public’.” It’s perfectly OK to guzzle a bottle of Jack four inches from the public sidewalk, but you can’t smoke a blunt on your front porch if you’re visible from the public road or sidewalk.

    • You are advocating violence to solve a social issue. Please stop. Everything government does is done at the point of a gun. All laws are commands to “do what we say or else”. And that “or else” is backed by heavily armed paramilitary forces (AKA “law enforcement”).

    • I think hypersensitivity disorder belongs right up there with hoplophobia in the DSM.

      And even if it did, there has _never_ been a proper double-blind study done to verify
      their assertions. Nobody has ever been shown to have been harmed in any way by “second-hand smoke” Iexcept for their widdle feewings) and what little _is_ in the air doesn’t bother normal people. The antismokerists just said, “We don’t like it, so nobody should be allowed to do it. Amen.”

  8. I am constantly amused that the lessons of Prohibition are not learned or remembered.

    They came for the smokers, and I did not care, because I’m not a smoker …

  9. I have half a mind to go visit just to stand in front of their city hall with a carton of Camel straights. Better yet a box of nice cigars….

  10. I am a smoker and I have trouble believing that this is really an issue. I understand that smoke stinks I own my own house with no one around and I still choose to go outdoors to smoke if I choose to enjoy a cigar I have my own garage/mancave that my wife infrequently navigates where I can do so. I don’t think that any apartments near me allow smoking. Now on the flipside of the coin the government needs to mind their own goddamned business stay out of my house without a warrent and get those drug dealers thugs and lowlifes off the street.

    • Ditto.

      I smoke, but I haven’t smoked indoors (well, except in my garage) in many years – ever since they banned smoking in bars in CA. When I smoke outdoors, I make sure I’m well away from and/or downwind of others.

      That said, I cannot imagine a government entity prohibiting an otherwise legal activity within one’s own residence. Here I thought Denver’s “let’s treat weed like booze, but you can’t smoke weed on your front porch if it’s visible from the street” idea was overbearing.

    • Quit smoking, and then you’ll understand why it is an issue. I quit 15 years ago, and I still get sick to my stomach if I get within 20 feet of someone smoking a cigarette. I can smell smoke on smokers’ clothes from five feet away, and their breath is appalling. (A friend of mine finally found a way to stop smoking when his wife refused to kiss him any more. Love conquers all (or sex, your pick).) When you smoke, you are absolutely oblivious to the rank odor of the tobacco–I certainly was, and I had the same attitude as the other smokers who are commenting here.

      • I’m replying to Mark but I’m going to say this goes for all the ‘smelling smoke makes me ill’ crowd;
        Given that there is no physiological reason for your reaction to cigarette smoke what you have is a distaste for the odor of it. It’s no more legitimate than disliking someone’s cologne. Frankly when a grown man tells me that the smell of cigarette smoke wafting on an outdoor breeze is enough to make him physically ill I suspect two things simultaneously; that he needs some real problems to worry about and that he’s pretty much a sissy.

        An anecdote: The girls in my office were just recently talking about ‘how nasty’ cigarette smoke is and how it makes them sick to even smell it on others clothing. They continued in this vein for quite some time. Virtually every one of them has at some point complimented my cologne so when I pointed out that I smoke about a pack a day they were floored. They simply couldn’t smell it even when I’d smoked three in the confines of my SUV one the way in that morning.
        Since then though a couple have complained about the smell of smoke on my clothes.

        The point of this is that unless you’re in the room with the smoker you’re simply fooling yourself. It’s all in your mind and like most perceptions you can change yours, they’ve just been shaped by media to find smoke revolting.

      • I smoked for over a decade, and have now been quit for many years. The smell of smoke does not bother me.

        It’s my firm and empirical belief that ex-smokers who claim the smell suddenly “nauseates” them are reacting to a subconscious frustration that anybody would DARE not have already made the same choices they, only recently, made for themselves.

        “How dare this scum still be smoking? I quit, and it was hard, and now he has the audacity to flaunt his cavalier choices in my face!”

        I promise you, if you get over yourself, you will enjoy life more.

        • It’s a religious cult. Just look at the reaction of any anti when they hear about someone else converting to their cause. “Oh! How WONDERFUL! We’ve got a new member!”

          There’s nothing more annoying than a reformed sinner.

          And, of course, as a smoker, I’m a filthy dirty incorrigible inconsiderate sinner. But that’s OK; I’m also a Radical Libertarian Loon™.

  11. Unreal.
    First the New York gun seizure notice, and now this.
    Up next, you can’t exercise in your shared wall home, because I can smell your sweat. Why, that’s the same as licking your bodily fluids. Why, there may be the definite possibility of a firm maybe that I might someday get sick, or catch your disease.
    You can’t have sex in your shared wall home either, cause I can smell that too. And I don’t want to catch AIDS.
    Yes, you have to go to your doctor, get proof that you don’t have any diseases, and provide proof to any shared wall neighbors, the police, and the city council.
    (If memory serves correctly, California police can enforce health and safety laws).

  12. See, my landlord doesn’t want tenants to smoke indoors, but it’s his property and he has the right to do that and I respect his wishes. I’d have a huge problem with the arrangement if he was okay with smoking and Nana Government forced him to ban it.

  13. My wife is a smoker, and she is disabled to the point where she can’t go outside to smoke whenever she wants a cigarette. In the winter, it becomes even more problematic. Where are her rights under the people with disabilities act? These collectivists ALWAYS paint themselves into a corner. It can be somewhat amusing to watch them twist and contort in a vain attempt to rationalize their irrational beliefs.

  14. Easy solution
    Ban fire, no fire no smoke
    How hard was that to solve
    PS: should probably ban anything that smells at the same time, save even more tax payer enforcement $
    Enforcement should be when smell inspector smells anything, identifies location of said smell, federal government (our $) provided MRAP with SWAT team will be driving through your front door

    • A shout out to Bill in IL: The SWAT team would then have to arrest themselves because of the stench of the diesel from their MRAP. The progressivists do paint themselves into corners.

  15. In college, I shared a three bedroom apartment with two roommates, one of whom smoked so much pot that we nicknamed him “Captain Toke.” I didn’t smoke at all and the other only did occasionally, but neither of us wanted the place to stink like pot. So we compromised: Captain Toke could smoke, but his bedroom window had to be open, a towel under his closed bedroom door, and only one shared joint at a time (i.e., no bong parties with 10 of his loser stoner buddies.) It worked out fairly well for a semester, with everyone’s rights peacefully co-existing, the place not reeking, and no one making a federal or municipal case out of it. Then he flunked out so hard he had to transfer to public college and that was that.

    • Thank you for the example of how to solve social issues peacefully. Using government not only doesn’t solve anything, it creates a host of new problems.

  16. I gotta be honest. I accept people’s right to smoke around my apartment building, but that doesn’t mean I have to like it. I fucking hate it. See, here’s the deal:

    I don’t have the problem of smoke coming through my walls, but I do live on an upper floor, and I used to sit on my porch all the time. Then, about five months after I moved in, someone moved in below me. They smoke. They sit on their porch and chainsmoke, and because of the prevailing wind off the lake in front of me, it rises from their porch and blows directly into mine. There goes my ability to sit on my porch. Gone. My ability to enjoy my upper floor apartment, with the windows and sliding glass door open and the breeze coming through 90% of the time, is gone.

    Furthermore, If it’s a really windy day, because my sliding glass door is on the windward side and my bedroom & bathroom windows are on the leeward side, the low pressure on the backside will pull air in around the sliding glass door. It’s fairly well sealed, as are the windows, and for HVAC purposes there isn’t an appreciable air leak. But it only takes a little cigarette smoke to get sucked in around those seals for me to smell it in my house. I’ve been lucky that “windy day” has only coincided with “outside smoking” once that I know of, but it was pretty obnoxious in my living room.

    So yeah, with all possible candor, to hell with the people around me who smoke.

    • Damned straight.

      And as long as we’re ranting… To hell with all of those [some miscellaneous ethnicity, I can’t tell them apart] people I’ve worked with who put their rotten fish/cabbage smelling crap, that they call “lunch”, in the microwave that I have to walk past on my way outside to have a smoke. Fvcking inconsiderate, air-polluting, nausea-inducing cow-orkers.

      • I once worked at a place where the staff more or less forbade a particular coworker from bringing a certain dish to work for lunch. He was not of any particular ethnicity that I can recall, nor do I recall the dish, I just remember that you could smell it for the rest of the day when he heated it up for lunch. It got in your pores, I think.

        • My wife lovely bride would call that a “stick in your throat stink”. She usually used that term to refer to a fermenting manure pile in Morgan Hill, CA, on the east side of US 101.

        • A little mom and pop store down the street from me is owned by a really nice Korean couple. About twice a month they cook (if that’s the right word) kimchi.
          5 seconds after entering, your eyes are watering. I go 2 blocks home and the wife asks me if the Chongs were cooking kimchi again.
          I think a blood drinking dog fart smells better.

          • I think a blood drinking dog fart smells better

            Kimchi. Mmmm…. fermented cabbage (usually). Let’s take a vegetable that’s already kind of stinky when it’s cooked, and let it rot for a while. Then we’ll eat it.

            See cat dung (and cat) on a Hibachi, below.

            I have a niece who is currently living in South Korea as an “Army wife”. She complains about the smog and the kimchi stink.

        • I once lived in a campus apartment where my downstairs neighbors, Korean physicists on postdoc, brewed their own kimchi in a 20 gallon cooler that they kept in their bathtub. When a batch was getting near ripe, the smell in my apartment was enough to make my eyes water (I can’t even imagine how strong it must have been in their place). It permeated *everything.* Never did get used to it.

          Sometimes I hated those people. But then I immediately hated myself, because they were so…darn…nice. Two of the kindest people I have ever met.

          I barbecued hamburgers for them once, and they were highly impressed: “Just like McDonalds!” (I hope for better when I bbq, but I took it as a compliment.) I put cheese on mine, they put kimchi on theirs. Sigh…and ne’er the twain shall meet. 🙂

        • The maker of Sriracha, a popular spicy condiment, has been ordered to stop the stink. But fans of the food need not worry, the company was not told to shut down all operations.

          A judge ruled Tuesday that the factory that manufactures the trendy hot sauce must partially shut down after neighbors complained of the spicy smells it was producing.

          Residents of Irwindale, a small city east of Los Angeles, filed a lawsuit in late October saying Huy Fong Foods had refused to take sufficient action to abate noxious fumes strong enough to irritate their eyes and throats.

          The company’s red Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce, sold in clear squeezy bottles with a green cap and trademark rooster logo, has become one of the top-selling condiments in the United States.

    • Matt,
      Thought of you while reminiscing and putting together a slide show of my trip to Africa.
      We were on a kind of an abandoned tree stand/house kinda thing, overlooking a waterhole. We were hunting warthogs. Our guide had brought in dried elephant dung and lighted it to mask our scent. I thought he was just effing with us. It was like the incense from hell. The wind shifted every effing 15 minutes.
      The more I smelled, the more I knew. He was effing with us.
      He finally broke down. He was effing with us. Trying to gross us out.
      He almost succeeded.
      Good grief. Elephant dung, smoldering, made me want to smoke anything, and I smoke. I wanted to light anything to keep from gagging.
      My hunting partner, who chews now and again, wanted one of my smokes.
      We got our warthogs.

    • Enforcement ought to be fun.

      No officer, I wasn’t smoking a tobacco product in my house. I was burning these 14 different flavors of incense, plus a little cat dung, plus a cat, on my Hibachi in my living room. Oh – I *was* also smoking a cigar out there in the non-prohibited area. Is there a problem with that?

  17. So, if I can’t smoke in “my own home” as I see fit, does that mean my neighbor who smokes can just come over and “borrow” my house for 10 minutes and I “borrow” his house for about 10 minutes and we each smoke at each others’ houses? After all, I wouldn’t be smoking in “my own home.”

  18. [supposed to be a reply to Bova immediately above]

    Nah. You smoke in your own house with a patio door open. You extinguish them in an ashtray on your patio. If anyone complains, you were smoking outside.

  19. All a matter of position, perspective, references and of course…Opinion.
    Among the many obvious purposes for members of the local Aristocracy to enact such laws is no less than another timely reminder to members of the peasant masses that any act in which they may still engage not yet fully regulated under written law constitutes a ‘legal loophole’.
    Of equal, if not greater importance is maintaining the health of the laborers in order that they continue to fulfill their necessary duties as indentured servants — forced through confiscatory taxation to support both an ever-expanding bureaucracy of Illiberal, Digressive Statists on all levels of .gov, and to satisfy the requirement of perpetual debt service to the moneylenders in the central bank.

  20. Wow…let’s use extreme examples to make our case….cause we’re 12 years old.
    Guns are covered by the 2nd amendment. Which amendment is it that covers cigarettes? The first covers speech freedom, but doesn’t mean you have a right to be heard.
    Anyway…Govmint took your rights to shoot your guns inside your apartment but nobody has complained about here. It seems everybody understands that bullets can “leak” into the adjacent apartment, pierce a lung and cause someone to drown in their own blood. It doesn’t happen often but it has happened. Its still your right…right?
    Let’s say your smoke “leaks” into your neighbors apartment and they die in their sleep from an asthma attack -triggered by your smoke…well, that’s not your problem; Its your right to smoke and to hell with everybody else. No remorse at all? No concern at all?
    Let’s say your neighbor has glaucoma and a prescription for some cigaweed producing smoke which “leaks” into your apartment. I guess you might just as well count it as “free” smoke even though you may not want it. You could move, but your life just got turned upside down cause you failed the drug test at work with traces of pot in your system. well, that’s not your neighbor’s problem; He has a prescription and he thinks “to hell with you”.
    Nobody likes to make accommodations for others but its what we do in a civil society. We see somebody turn in front of us and we slow down -not because we have to but because we’re not all @S$holes or don’t want the hassle that comes with a wreck. We don’t make the loudest f@rt we can during a quiet scene at the movie theater. We also don’t spray potpourri on somebody just because they f@rt at the restaurant.
    It called showing some courtesy and respect for your neighbor. You see your neighbor getting beat up, do you do nothing or something? Would you take a risk for your neighbor? Why do you insist on blowing smoke on him?

  21. Meh.

    I’m on board with the general principle of why this isn’t a good thing, but I can’t bring myself to give a rat’s ass about San Rafael, CA. So the super-rich who own detached houses are lording it over the rest of the town, which is merely rich. Millionaires squabbling with multimillionaires. Cry me a farking river.

    Plus, having lived in an apartment that was surrounded by other apartments containing people who smoked, I can tell you that the smell (if nothing else) does NOT stay behind drywall and soundboard. There’s nothing awesome about living in someone else’s stale ashtray. I don’t think the city/gov’t/whoever has any business telling everyone how to live — especially not the one rule for you, another rule for us kind of garbage — but I sure was glad when I found an apartment complex with lease terms that prohibited smoking.

    The biggest problem with this situation is that California exports these assholes to other states across the West.

    • The city council who all live in single family homes is not going to bother with passing this ordinance because smoking in adjacent properties doesn’t bother them. This was spurned by residence of multi-unit residences where the working class stiffs such as yourself live. They wanted it – they got it. Stop whining about wealthy people – you sound bitter.

  22. Well, my very first “moderated” comment…ever… I don’t know what words axed it, but I’d like to.

    • It wasn’t you. It was the 300 spam comments that we got deluged with over the last 45 minutes. It overwhelmed the filter, so it started sending everything to moderation until it could work through the backlog. They’re all cleared now, I think.

  23. Just for the record; any dwelling that houses 2 or more separate family’s must be separated by a 2 hour dividing partition [that’s a 2 hour “fire” rating] usually this would be a 2×6 wall insulated [R-19 or better] with double layer of 5/8 drywall or 1″ fire board on “both” sides and “fire caulked” [that sh!t is expensive i can tell you] this is a top to bottom partition, [read, shingles to basement floor]

    what this means is, you aint smelling nothing between those walls [well that is if they followed code]

    of coarse this only applies if your location requires code inspections [i believe this is a national code, but i could be wrong, it has happened once before. lol ]

    • And when exactly was this code enacted? I suspect more recently than ancient history. A lot of San Rafael has been there for a long time. (Not the new fancy houses–those are a side-effect on the diminishing buildable lots closer to SF)

  24. I wondering how long before this is used to erode what is left of the 4th amendment; when the odor of a legal product is evidence of a criminal act you pretty much have nothing left of the expectation of security or privacy in your home.

    I’m also wondering why no one hit on the actual solution to the problem of your neighbors smoking; civil suit. If you can prove harm then you ought to prevail (good luck with that).

    No matter what your position is on smoking (and it’s really not the point) this law stinks.

  25. I once worked for a company located in Marin County. The political-correctness of the place was suffocating. Marin-San Francisco- Berkeley are the result of decades upon decades of the after-effects of the Nineteenth Amendment.

  26. I am thinking the idiots in San Rafael deserve these morons for whom they voted. No sympathy here.

    BTW the Federal judges are already using the “rights of society at large” to infringe on our Constitutional rights.

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