True confession time… I was once tempted to try vaping.
This despite having a lifelong hatred of all things smoking and tobacco related.
You can thank my dad for that. Listening to his morning hacking cough was a strong disincentive to even give 10 Benson & Hedges a go.
So, I grew up detesting the smell of cigarette smoke, despised having people smoking around me in pubs and restaurants, and danced a jig of wild joy when Scotland finally brought in the indoor smoking ban.
It had an immediate two-fold benefit. I didn’t stink when I got home from a night out, and I can now tell at glance what a pub is like by the calibre of clientele filling their lungs with carcinogenics outside.
Vaping, though, is a thing I was never up nor down about. Even when you had the odd numpty having a crafty puff indoors, it wasn’t as repellent as the old fags.
And, in the early days, vapes appealed to the geek in me who can never resist a gadget. I had a quick puff on one a mate had, mainly because it looked like the Doctor’s sonic screwdriver.
But the spinny-heid side effect quickly kicked that one into touch, and I never troubled the world of vaping again.
It has, however, come to trouble me. For one thing, it’s the number of kids – and in some cases I do mean “kids” literally – wandering the streets in clouds of perfumed vapour.
Bring on the disposable vape ban
At first, I smiled wryly at the youth of today being softies who never tried an Embassy Regal behind the bike shed, but cut straight to bubble gum-flavoured mist. Surely that’s cheating?
My smile faded the more I had to walk through noxious clouds billowing out of folk wandering along the streets. Thanks, but I really don’t want to be breathing in what’s just been in some random’s lungs.
And, while the jury is out on the health effects of vaping, it’s a safe bet that it’s not good, especially for young people.
It certainly isn’t good for the health of our communities either, given the massive tide of disposable vapes simply dumped on streets, these days. Not just an eyesore; the shattered plastic shards are a menace, too.
So, bring on the disposable vape ban that is being introduced in a concerted drive across the four nations. And hoorah for cutting back on the flavours, many of which seem to be tailored specifically to underdeveloped taste buds.
Sure, the hunners of vape shops which have sprung up on every corner might take a hit on disposable vapes. But the refillable ones are still very much on the go, so it’s not as if the shops are being hounded out of business. And it might just stop more of the damn things opening.
Here we have a public health initiative that, overnight, will help the health of young people and keep a mess off our streets. I will cheer on the day disposable vapes vanish in a puff of smoke.
Scott Begbie is a journalist and editor, as well as PR and comms manager for Aberdeen Inspired