Written by Joe Krzyston
It’s been a rainy week here at Roanoke College, and many of us stuck closely to the shelter of buildings, venturing outside only to dart to class or commons. Every society has its standouts, however, and ours is no exception. This week, nobody displayed more tenacity and courage than the Miller Hall Smokers.
Sometimes, when twenty year olds smoke, they do it for silly reasons, to annoy their parents or doctors, but not this crowd. No, they proved that they were in it for the long haul, standing in a cold, bitter rain, huddling under a shelter roughly the size of a postage stamp, taking drags from American Spirits and those weird Marlboros of indeterminate variety with the black and green motif on the packs.
“It’s a lifestyle,” said one of the smokers, “and it’s one that we stick to. Like I always say, when you make a commitment, you don’t just make a commitment on the easy days. You make a commitment on the hard days too. So say what you will about what we’re doing- at least it’s an ethos.”
The Miller Hall Smokers, with an affiliate chapter that meets behind West Hall, is one of RC’s oldest clubs, membership dating back to the fondly remembered days of indoor smoking. Though dwindling in numbers, they maintain a loyal following, one not easily dissuaded by threat of rain or wind.
“Throw whatever you want at us,” said a leader of the group, “but there’s not a lot that can knock us down.” She paused, took a drag, and looked out over the rolling hills of the back quad pensively, adding “Well, except maybe some cardiovascular stuff down the road.”