又中又英
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又中又英

又中又英|To go cold turkey

2024/06/18 14:45:20 網誌分類: 生活
18 Jun
        

It requires strong willpower to quit smoking. I know because I was a chain smoker as a young journalist many years ago. A chain smoker is someone who smokes one cigarette after another. Deadline pressures and trying to get news exclusives made me chain-smoke. It eased my stress. One day, many years ago, I decided to go cold turkey when my throat hurt, and I could hardly talk from smoking too much. To go cold turkey means to suddenly and completely stop using drugs, alcohol, or tobacco that people are addicted to.

I no longer smoke but will never forget how difficult it was to go cold turkey. The government, which regularly increases tobacco tax to discourage smoking, recently proposed new laws to further make smokers quit. These include a total ban on electronic cigarettes and flavoured tobacco, and expanding public areas where smoking is banned. Henry Tong Sau-chai of the Council on Smoking and Health asked why the government has not banned shisha, which is also called hookah or water pipe. Hookahs, popular in the Middle East, use flavoured tobacco.

Hookahs are legal in Hong Kong and popular in Lan Kwai Fong and other outside bars. Tong Sau-chai’s question made me wonder why the government focuses on cigarettes but not cigars or pipes, which are also harmful. I smoked a pipe for fun when I was young, and cigars when I joined friends in Guangdong before the pandemic. I gave them up long ago. It is right to discourage smoking, but cold turkey is hard for many smokers. As a former smoker, I worry about those who can’t go cold turkey but can’t afford higher cigarette prices.

要戒煙,實在需要很強的意志。我深明此理,因為我多年前當年輕記者時,就曾是個 chain smoker——a chain smoker就是一支接一支地吸煙的煙民。趕死線的壓力以及奮力爭取獨家新聞令我煙駁煙(chain-smoke),這能緩和我的壓力。許多年前的一天,我因抽煙過多而喉嚨刺痛,亦差不多說不出話來了,以致我決定要徹底戒煙(go cold turkey)。To go cold turkey是指突然及徹底地戒掉某樣成癮的習慣,例如藥物、酒精又或煙草。

我現在已不再抽煙,但永遠忘不了要完全戒煙(go cold turkey)是有多艱難。政府為了阻止市民吸煙,一直有定期增加煙草稅,最近又提出新法例,進一步推動煙民戒煙。這包括全面禁止電子煙和調味煙,以及擴大禁煙的公眾範圍。香港吸煙與健康委員會的湯修齊質問政府為何還未禁止水煙 shisha,它可被稱為 hookah。Hookahs用的是有味的煙草,在中東尤為受歡迎。 

水煙(hookahs)在香港是合法的,在蘭桂坊和一些戶外酒吧亦甚受歡迎。湯修齊的提問令我思忖為何政府只是專注於香煙,而非雪茄或煙斗之類,這些也是有害的。我年輕的時候,也曾為了好玩而抽過煙斗,新冠疫情前在廣東也跟朋友們抽過雪茄。這些我都已經戒了很久了。不鼓勵吸煙是對的,但要徹底戒煙(cold turkey)對許多煙民來說確實很難。身為前煙民,我擔心那些戒不掉煙癮(can’t go cold turkey)但又負擔不起更貴煙價的人。
 
mickchug@gmail.com
Michael Chugani褚簡寧
中譯:七刻

  
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