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Monday, June 7, 2010

Holy Smokes, in the East Village

Storefront, East Village
Photo by myself in the East Village, around 2nd Avenue and 9th Street.

A typical convenience store in New York.

Some are fancier than others, of course. Many delis and grocers have fruit and cut flowers outside, for passersby to grab on the walk home.

From the looks of this store, New Yorkers need cigarettes, cold beer and cash. Makes sense, since a pack of cigarettes costs a whopping $10.00 per pack now. That's 50 cents per smoke.

About half the cost goes toward a cigarette tax for the city and state. The price just keeps climbing. I still see numbers of smokers everywhere. They're most noticeable in the winter, huddled in front of buildings, poor things.

Related posts: Light em Up, Signs of Hope and Big Wampum Sign, Eighth Avenue.

10 comments:

Olivier said...

c'est amusant, en France, les prix peuvent augmenter, cela ne fait pas descendre le nombre de fumeurs, comme quoi.

Bibi said...

Despite the price, smokers just keep puffing away. There are street people who beg here, but I never, ever give to people who smoke.

These shops like you've shown are universal! :)

Abraham Lincoln said...

Holy Smokes is right. I am surprised little stands like this are not robbed more often than banks.

Gosh. I quit smoking cigarettes back in 1970 because I quit research and development and became a teacher. We had enormous breaks (well, one period long) which was a great time to smoke and drink coffee and gossip and I did all that but switched to a corn cob pipe and smoked those until Sunday night, March 15, 1996. The next day I went in for surgery to fix my descending aorta which had a bulge in it and it was feared the aneurysm would break and I'd instantly bleed to death.

But it was too late,
And the damage was done.
If I had it to do over.
I wouldn't be so glum.

I should have quit altogether
And blamed quitting on the price;
But back then smokes was cheaper than rice.

Lily Hydrangea said...

I feel sorry for smokers, except when I am in the city in the Summertime & I have to walk past one & inhale their smoke. That always seems worse to me when it's hot and sticky out.
It's such a nasty habit and one that is very difficult to break.
I still like this photo and these little shops though.
I like your story too Abe.

Lou said...

Wow. $10 for a pack of ciggies! I've never smoked and never will but even i know that's expensive. You want to play with your health, then the price must be high.

I love black and white photographs anyways but somehow, b&w photos of New York are always the best. Great shot. :)

Fredrik said...

Glad I'm not a smoker in NYC. Great pic. A lot to look at.

Louis la Vache said...

Great title - and Olivier's observation about the price not reducing the number of smokers is just as apt here, as witnessed by the fact that at $10 a pack, people are still smoking. Nicotine is a powerful addiction!

Louis la Vache said...

One more comment, Kitty - this is one of those shots that would lose much of its gritty vitality were it in color. You really excel at this type of 'slice of NY life' image.

ρομπερτ said...

What an impressive entry of yours. Amazing photography with many stories indeed. Greece remains to be a country where many do smoke, as there are packets available for about two dollars; apart from those being sold on the black market, which is ever more growing.
Interesting as well, that T-Mobile is available there, as it is a German based company. Please have a wonderful Wednesday.

daily athens

Eve said...

$10 a pack in NY? That's insane! I'm glad I never picked up smoking, no matter how much they cost per pack.