Don#039;t be an ass. There#039;s enough butts here already.

by Beacon Staff • November 15, 2006

Puffing Emersonians annoying our Boylston Street neighbors.

Our view:

A little courtesy goes a very long way.

There's a haze over Boylston Street. It hovers five to six feet off the ground, wispy clouds of white smoke climbing into the atmosphere.,At issue:

Puffing Emersonians annoying our Boylston Street neighbors.

Our view:

A little courtesy goes a very long way.

There's a haze over Boylston Street. It hovers five to six feet off the ground, wispy clouds of white smoke climbing into the atmosphere.

Its source? Cigarettes.

It's no secret that Emerson kids and cigarettes go as well together as Rick James and Mary Jane. While not all students smoke, the ones who puff with such voracity it's a wonder Emerson doesn't have its own toxin-induced hole in the atmosphere.

Finding an appropriate spot to light up is becoming more and more difficult for Emerson smokers.

With the recent enforcement of no-smoking areas, frustrated students are swarming to other entryways on Boylston Street to get a nicotine fix.

These makeshift smoking spots, though, are not Emerson property, but usually belong to private business owners-and they are not pleased with their new, smoldering sidewalk displays.

While it's unfortunate that students are not allowed to smoke outside their residence buildings and must venture a little further from home to indulge their habit, it is not fair that business owners, nor their customers, are bearing the brunt of Emerson's policies.

Smoking students need to remember why such policies are in place and consider that they should also apply to Emerson's neighbors. The health and lifestyle choices of others are at stake when smokers assemble in a public, heavily trafficked area, such as a residence hall or a business' doorway.

Smokers, however, are not exclusively at fault here. Boylston Street's congested sidewalk may be part of the reason so many Emerson smokers prefer to congregate in doorways set off the main walk. It would be difficult to ask only smokers to consider others when everyone who traipses down our street is guilty of displacing fellow pedestrians and loiterers at some point.

Boylston Street's sidewalk is fairly wide-in theory, it's large enough to accommodate all who need it, from cig-puffers to between-class gossipers to passersby.

But everyday, the sidewalk is clogged by such people; at night, it's crowded with theatre-goers and club-hoppers.

Day-to-day life on Boylston would improve greatly if only everyone who uses this street stopped for a moment to take into account who they could be inconveniencing by the way in which they stand or walk, and then correct themselves-move in closer to friends they're chatting with, watch where they're walking, or smoking against the side of a building or in a less-frequented area.

We can all co-exist peacefully on our little piece of Boston as long as everyone who uses this section of the street makes an effort to affect a quite un-Bostonian attitude: just show a little courtesy.