Three packs a week

If you’ve ever been around me for any length of time, you may have chanced to notice the utter disgust with which I treat smokers and smoking in general. You all deserve to die. Etcetera.

Let’s move on before I turn this into a diatribe. I lead into the post with that because I experienced a paradigm shift in my thinking last week: I looked at my snacking habit as though it were a nicotine addiction; I mean, I eat a chocolate bar after dinner; I like one in the morning; I take one when I’m bored. Sound familiar? Set aside the toll on my health for the moment. Let’s instead just look at the financial impact of this addiction. A quick poll of the vending machines in the canteen shows chocolate bars on sale for €0.95. I down an average (based wholly on my own recollection…and today’s consumption) an average of three chocolate bars per day.

In 2011, the cheapest cigarettes on sale in Ireland are Pall Mall; a pack of 20 will set you back €7.25 (1). We shall now mathemathize these numbers:

How many chocolate bars do I eat per year?

3 * 365 = 1095

How much does this cost me @ €0.95 per tasty treat?

1095 * 0.95 = 1040

This is a not-insubstantial amout of money to piss away on treats; in fact, instead of eating chocolate for a year I save about 90% of the cost of oh, a 13″ Macbook Pro direct from the Apple Store.

Let’s compare this to me feeding a cigarette habit. As a baseline, I’m going to assume one packet per week:

7.11 * 52 = 369.72

Does this match the cost of my chocolate habit? No. It is, however, three whole cigarettes a day (roughly):

52 * 20 = 1040
1040 / 365 = 2.84

I rounded up to the nearest whole number. The yearly cost of a three-a-day smoking habit is one-third that of my chocolate addiction:

369.72 / 1095 = 0.33

I need to triple my hypothetical cigarette consumption to match my current chocolate consumption.

369.72 * 3 = 1109.16

From that figure I learn it is 1109.16/7.11 or 156 packets of 20 cigarettes per year. (156*20)/365 cigarettes per day (8.54). Three packs of cigarettes a week. In realization of this, I ate a banana today.

Have your say on 'Three packs a week'

  • Jen on

    It’s a wonder that you don’t have Type 2 Diabetes.

    I love sugar. Adore, crave, sit up on a pedestal and suck my finger while wondering why the world isn’t made of Jelly Belly jelly beans and ice cream.

    I also have a genetic and physical predisposition to insulin resistance. Life’s a bitch. :p

    (I can’t remember the last time I had chocolate other than in ice cream. Sigh.)

  • Mark on

    I tweeted this earlier, but I feel exactly like a smoker trying to quit: Every time I go groping for a chocolate bar, I instead have to find an apple.

    I’ll be fucking chewing gum and downing twenty cups of coffee a day next.

  • Mariah on

    At .95 chocolate bars are considerably more than a single cigarette, it’d be cheaper to smoke 3 times a day. If you look at it the other way around, with the amount you consume it’s the equivalent cost of half a pack of cigarettes every day.

  • Mariah on

    Also – fucking chewing gum sounds like an interesting new fetish but make sure it’s the sugar free kind lest you get a yeast infection.

  • Mark on

    That was entirely the point I was hoping to make, Mariah. I’m going to open a saving’s account instead and buy myself a Macbook Pro next year.

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