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Up in smoke

Bad habits

Last night I dreamt I smoked a cigarette again. I inhaled deeply and then blew beautiful smoke rings into the air. I’ve missed this, I thought.

It has been 13 years since I smoked a cigarette in real life but I do it once or twice a week in dreams and it is always so good. Like many smokers, I can chart my life in brands. I had my first fag down an alleyway because I thought it would confuse the bullies if I asked for one, and it did. I can’t say I enjoyed it, but I learned that I could survive school and the problem of being too clever for my own good by joining the bad boys behind the conifers for a share of a Benson & Hedges they’d stolen out of their Mum’s gold packet.

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About Prospect Magazine

In Prospect's November issue: Paul Collier explains how major cities in the UK will always be in the shadow of London unless capitalism is overhauled and suggests ways that we might be able to improve the situation in those communities that capitalism has left behind. Meanwhile, Steve Bloomfield asks what is going at the Foreign Office. The once great institution that was a symbol of Britain’s global power now seems to be lost and unable to explains its role. Also, Samira Shackle explores a Pakistani protest movement that is unnerving the country’s military. Elsewhere in the issue: Dahlia Lithwick suggests that the Supreme Court will struggle to retain its authority now that Brett Kavanaugh is on the bench. Philip Ball argues that DNA doesn’t define destiny as he reviews a new book by Robert Plomin. Yasmin Alibhai-Brown and Simon Heffer debate political correctness.