Tobacco, divine, rare, superexcellent tobacco, which goes far beyond all their panaceas, potable gold and philosopher's stones, a sovereign remedy to all diseases.... But, as it is commonly abused by most men, which take it as tinkers do ale, 'tis a plague, a mischief, a violent purger of goods, lands, health, hellish, devilish and damned tobacco, the ruin and overthrow of body and soul.
MY LOVE-HATE relationship with the cigarette began a long time ago. I was thirteen at the time and I can well remember how I rather truculently told my grandmother, who was taking care of me, that I wanted to start smoking. I don't know what kind of a reaction I expected to get from her but she simply gave me sixpence and sent me down to the corner store to buy some cigarettes. When I had done that she calmly showed me how to light one and how to smoke it. Then she left me to it. I had a vague feeling that this was not quite the right thing to do; somehow it seemed to take all the fun out of it. I did persevere for a few days but finally decided that there was not much amusement to be got out of it and gave it up. I am sure if she had made a fuss, forbidden me to smoke and threatened to tell my father, the whole thing would have been much more amusing, and I might even have continued. However, in spite of a few sporadic attempts during the next few months smoking just didn't seem to fill any of my needs, and I decided to rather turn to wine, women and song. Unfortunately, I had a voice