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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/1608347-Flamingos
Rated: 13+ · Editorial · Educational · #1608347
whingeing, cringing and crime
Ah, public radio.
Gotta love it.
More fun than a barrel of broadcasters.

Today's flavor du jour phone-in was on the subject of a new provincial law -
Seems the lords of Litigation voted to bring down a righteous passage of putrescence,
in short, that it shall be deemed unlawful to smoke in the workplace....
(well, this has not been news for almost 2 decades now)
and a righteous law, indeed. Millions of non-smokers rejoice!
But wait folks, it gets better.
This now includes the rolling workplace.

Even that makes sense, when one considers public vehicles like taxis, trains, buses,
streetcars, cable cars, even possibly golf carts...and kids' merry-go-rounds.

But one of the test cases was exemplied by an outfit of housecleaners, a raging team of
molly maids, no less - counting upwards of 75% of whom smoke - and who are alotted
company cars to race from job to job.
Yet they are not allowed to smoke in said vehicles.
I musta missed something -
The vehicles, by definition, are not their workplace.
The house they're cleaning, on the other hand, is.

A truckdriver is handed a whopping fine for smoking in the cab of his semi.
Simply because that cab is deemed to be his workplace.
He owns that semi - is paying a thousand bucks a month for the next ten years to own it free and clear,
but he can't smoke in it. No-one else ever enters it..........but he's declared criminal for smoking in
it himself.

Well, I listened to the arguments. For example....the poor truck cab cleaners who will be exposed to
the second-hand residue....Hmmm.
What about the crew that washes my car?
It's........just a car by the way. I only use it to get from home to work. I don't "work" in it.

Let's consider the contractor who piles all his tools and gear in his oversized pickup, and drives it and
himself to the job. The house he's renovating is his workplace. Not his truck. But by painting "Chuck's
Home Renovations" on the side of it, he's liable to a whopping fine for butt-sucking on the way to work.
Suppose Chuck hires Joe the lackey (who doesn't smoke) and they both drive "to work" together?
Chuck politely declines to smoke while Joe's in the truck. At least, that's how it used to work.

(and here, I'm getting a little suspicious. Perhaps it's a tax on the advertisement you paint on the side of the vehicle. No ad - and it looks, smells, acts.........just like a private car.)


It gets better, folks.

Suppose I build a recording studio in the basement of my house. And I work like crazy down there producing
albums for fun and profit. It brings in income. It's a workplace. But it's in MY house.
Suppose I toil away in the upstairs spare bedroom (converted into a writing room) churning out bad pulp fiction,
for fun and profit.....(maybe not so much profit, because it's really bad writing..........but a lotta fun anyway)
It's a workspace. But it's in MY home.

The Nazi Gestapo (otherwise known as government agents) can spot Chuck easily, out there at large, clearly visible in his truck.
They don't have a clue what I'm doing in my basement, or my spare bedroom.
They're not supposed to, in a free society.

Now, you might ask, what's all this have to do with flamingos?
That's the best part.
That strange species of hominoids suited, booted and otherwise resembling something of minimal intelligence,
who happen to reside in the hallowed halls of government, in their infinite wisdom, have passed this little law....
(the gas they pass has more common and native sense!)
Meanwhile, casting askance and sidelong doe-eyed glances at what used to be referred to as a Kyoto Accord.
Yep. The one that actually paid a bit of attention to that um, stuff..........that comes out of the tailpipes of all those rolling "workplace" vehicles.

What happened?
Well, that's where they all got up and crept over to the corner and proceeded to hoist themselves up, cringing, whinging, on one leg, in the manner of all good self-respecting pink flamingos everywhere.

Which is hot stuff at the zoo.
Not so good for figuring out how best to prioritize the most urgent issues, and deal with them in a manner that
makes good sense.
Lately I've seen more hysteria raised over first, second, third, ad infinitum-hand smoke.....than I can recall ever seeing back in the glory days at the height of the cold war..........over missiles.
Big, fat juicy ones. The multi-megaton kind, with MIRVS and MARVS and all kinds of kill capacity.
No-one ever seemed able to do anything about those, really. They were just too damned big and scary.

But joe schmoe in this big rig working the 80-hour week?
Oh yeah - let's get him!

No doubt, they'll fiddle with this one until they get it just right. Their hearts are in the right place, probably.
It's just that their heads are in their collective asses...............
(probably looking for the secret code to solve Kyoto before we fry the planet)

But that's another story.

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