Shop Patrons Have License to Smoke

Among the few indoor spaces that still freely permit smoking are stores that deal specifically with tobacco products.

Kenneth Griggs, owner of Golden Crown Pipes and Tobacco in Carlsbad, said he wouldn't know how to sell his product if his customers weren't allowed to sample it on the spot. Griggs caters primarily to pipe smokers--he sells 27 flavors of tobacco--but he also sells cigarettes and cigars, and all smokers are welcome in his 1,000-square-foot shop.

"The only way you can buy tobacco is to stand here and fill up your pipe and smoke," Griggs said. "A smoker might not care for one load of tobacco, and they start on another."

Griggs said he has never encountered any problems with nonsmokers complaining of the smoke inside his shop, and he has his own guidelines, to which he tries to adhere.

"You'll find nonsmokers who like the smell of pipe tobacco but they hate the smell of a normal cigarette," he said. "We've had a couple people come in, too, and the smoke was overwhelming to them so they stepped outside."

Griggs, who has smoked pipes and cigars for 20 years, says he has managed to do so without becoming addicted. When he leaves his business, he hardly smokes at all and generally chooses nonsmoking sections at restaurants.

"I smoke for relaxation and to take and to show my product," he said. "When I'm not smoking, I don't like cigarette smoke. It's crazy, but there it is."

"I know what both sides of the fence are," Griggs added. "I've been in a line before, and I've had people ask me to extinguish what I've had, and I did exactly what I was asked because I believe in the rights of the individual."

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