Monday, May 16

New York's No Smoking Ban - A kinder, gentler city?

Although it has yet to take effect, many of the tiny litter-free city parks littering New York City, already jump-started the citywide No Smoking Ban by posting these charming little notices around town.  A small shot of courtesy here, and a heavy dose of New Yorker vigilance there, and I'm fairly sure the ban to protect us all against second hand smoke will be vigorously enforced.
While an adamant smoke-free person, while walking the length of the immense Central Park, I did find the measures a bit draconian.  Sure, it's a pain to plop yourself down on the ground only to find the couple upwind from you puffing over your pastry puffs. But, generally, I move my spot and carry on.  New York is also banning beach smoking as well, a measure I believe Italy has in place already.  
Not to be outdone, I also noticed that local companies finally started enforcing the removal of 'smoker's corners' at their building entrances.  You may remember those shoulder-slouching people copping a quick drag between classes in Junior High school...
Like when boarding trains in Europe, it always was a bit disgusting having to brave the billows of smoke prior to going to your meetings only to find your Fendi perfume now smells more like the homeless guy you just passed by down in the subway.  

But, what was truly a refreshing breath of fresh air, while passing by the myriad signs banning everything from dogs who pee on the planters to loud noise at night, was the manner in which many of the signs are posted.  Maybe Italy, with its penchant for forbidding everything in every way might get a few more people on board if they took this  kinder approach?  The signs in New York went from the cutsie to an appeal to your keen civic sense ('It bothers others').  Spotting signs that instead of stating something was illegal told us it may hurt us, say, to stick our heads out a train window, or open the doors while the train is moving, may actually work. 

Here's a recent photo taken by a friend in Rome - being put on notice obviously caught her attention.  But, could she light up if she had wanted to?

1 comment:

Dave514 said...

Welcome back! Sorry can't read your Italian sign, it's too small.