I had driven more than 800 miles that Friday before arriving at Minot, North Dakota, around 7 p.m. on August 21, 2009. Knowing that North Dakota is one of the only states in the Midwest without a smoking ban in restaurants or bars, I intended to get something out of it and explore some of Minot’s bars. I only made it into one and, since I don’t drink, had little reason to stick around without any noteworthy smokers in sight. At that point, I retreated to my old reliable sightings venue while road trippin’….the parking lot of the local Wal-Mart, whose downscale clientele seems to be a perfect venue for sightings. That evening I would get a special treat.
I usually find a parking spot in the lot as close to the building as possible and work my way closer to the front as cars leave. Well the car directly in front of me was leaving and I had planned to pull up to take his place, but noticed that wasn’t gonna happen as a car was waiting right behind him for him to leave so they could swoop in. And thank God they did. I looked up to the SUV waiting for the parking spot and could only see the passenger seat, occupied by a very attractive long-haired blond teenager. In the back of mind, as always, I was curious about tobacco consumption prospects but was skeptical given how hot and young the girl was. Still, that window was cracked….
That’s when it happened. Just before the SUV pulled in, the girl raised an almost-finished cigarette up to her nicotine-stained lips, took a drag, and then tossed the butt out the cracked window. I was breathless as I then watched the SUV pull into the stall. The SUV stopped and its passengers filtered out. Driving was a middle-aged blond mom of very average looks. She may have been a smoker or may not have been, but I simply didn’t see it. But then girly stepped out. She was the picture of innocence with just a touch of naughty girl, with long blond hair flowing down her back, a pink long-sleeved top and adorably tight blue jeans. I would guess she was 17 or 18. Then, from out of the back came a little boy about three years old. I nearly asked for the kid’s e-mail address then and there because I knew he’d be a future smoking fetisher growing up with a big sister that beautiful and stinky.
So the cluster went inside Wal-Mart and I was giddy over seeing what I just saw, and obviously got out at the first opportunity to take a look at that still smoldering cigarette butt. It was an all-white Camel Light, and I was able to observe that the cigarette’s filter was very dark. This cute little girl inhales her smoke very deeply and the lungs wrapped inside that pink top had to have been a deep pitch of highway tar black. From there, I spent the next hour with my eyes glued to the front door, waiting for this family to come back out and hoping my nicotine girl would provide an encore performance. Finally they did, and were putting a full cart of bags into the back of the SUV. As feared, the girl was responsible for putting the cart away, which sucked because it meant mom would be ready to leave when she got back and there’d be less time for me to see a light-up before they drove out of sight. However, the little boy cried for mama about something, and it was indeed the middle-aged woman who responded, confirming that it wasn’t simply the teen girl’s love child.
Mom got behind the wheel a good 30 seconds before the daughter returned to the car. They had been inside Wal-Mart for an hour, so clearly if mom was a smoker, she’d be firing one up by now…and that of course meant that the only smoker in that vehicle was the teen daughter in the pink top. The girl finally got into the SUV and I just knew she needed a cigarette, but time was gonna be tight to see it since mom was preparing to drive off. First the girl took a swig of soda pop left in the SUV from earlier, and then started fishing around in her purse. Sure enough just as they were leaving, girly placed another all-white between her adorable young lips. This was just so amazing of a dynamic to come across in the year 2009. A nonsmoking mother who lets her adorable teen daughter selfishly expose both her and her infant son to cancerous secondhand smoke within the close confines of an SUV with the window BARELY cracked. Again, as soon as my lease runs out here in Des Moines, I’m moving to Minot.