Oh, yes, thereâ€™s the whole life and death bit. For sure, that factors into it if you want to dwell on the morbid. We are (pretty much) all au fait with how vaping is safer when compared to smoking. And that extends to those seeking to legislate the sod out of mods & liquids. They may come out with all kinds of nonsense but they know in their hearts what the truth of the matter is â€“ just yesterday they let that slip in a Welsh government committee. Even Glantz has acknowledged the relative safety; he just disputes the 95% figure.
I had a bout of illness that Iâ€™ll not bother going into here. After such a life event you find yourself in a strange place. Friends that feared they could catch it from you stopped calling round, others took deep offence from the drug-induced moods or didnâ€™t understand what was going on â€“ and potential employers look at you like youâ€™re damaged goods. Thereâ€™s hollowness to existence when 90% of the life you knew no longer exists.
Vaping filled that hole: The equipment, the forums, the meets and then the job. Iâ€™m not alone in this. We make friends in the vaping world, friends who go on to set up businesses or do reviews or make people laugh with their comments. We are tied to vaping more than we ever were to tobacco â€“ and it scares people. They see this for what it is: itâ€™s more than an addiction. Like spending your weekends jumping out of planes, off bridges or stock car racing, those with the power to control it will try to.
But itâ€™s not that aspect of vaping that I ascribe to having saved me either.
Iâ€™d taken to travelling everywhere with a toilet roll following one very unpleasant Reading Festival when younger. A weekend of bands, drinks and food from people in vans whoâ€™d have had every possession burnt if Public Health inspectors had inspected back in the day. A couple of days of mixed deep-fried salmonella combined with portions of gastroenteritis in a bun took its toll.
But age dulls the memory of cramps and the sound of the laughter from your mates. The imperative to be as prepared as a boy scout makes way for the convenience of travelling about with just a phone and a wallet.
So thank you vaping.
Thank you for producing drippers that call for the constant mopping of the sides and the need to capture those errant rivulets from airholes. Thanks for giving me the need to carry more absorbent material than a hazardous materials emergency spill response team. Thank you for saving my life on the 4:15 from Euston.