Smoking is bad for your health. You can't light up a cigarette in the pub; you have to take it outside. And from this good intention springs love, along with even more smokers.
Councillor Danny Healy-Rae has observed a most alarming trend among the young in Kerry. They're taking up smoking, not quitting! It's the latest pick-up strategy, and it flies in the face of all the warnings about emphysema and cancer and heart disease.
Say there's a young lady you've your eye on, but try to get within ten feet of her and she's surrounded by her posse. Ah, but there she goes out to the back for a fag and what would the smart young fella do? Go right on out after her and offer to light her ciggie while you're lighting yours. Ice-breaker, yes? While the smoke curls round your head, you get four or five minutes of conversation and a possible relationship that couldn't happen if you didn't take a puff or two.
What does the Tobacco Control office say about this dreadful turn of events? Sure and the ban was meant to protect pub workers, they say, and we don't care if anyone quits smoking at all, at all.
One wonders if the tobacco police are to be found out in the back, trying to pick up girls.