Moral Dilemma

A couple months ago, I’m sitting here on the internet next to the big window that looks out onto the street and I notice a young guy walking in strange circles out in the street, directly in front of my house. I stand up to watch as he walks towards my neighbor’s bushes. I find out later that he’s put his bike there. And by his bike, I mean the bike that he attempted to steal from my neighbor’s back deck, but couldn’t because the pedal/chain/something was messed up on it. (I found all this out later in the day.) Then he walks to another neighbor’s front door, the one directly across the street from me. He roots around in the little container on their porch that they throw cigarette butts into. He finds one that isn’t completely depleted and lights it up. Eww.

Then he’s back in the street, wandering around in an odd way. And continues up the street, looking on other porches and eventually disappearing between two of the houses, into the back. So I get dressed and start casually strolling the neighborhood, wondering where he’s went. I spent 30 minutes, walking around and hanging out on my porch, waiting for him to reemerge, but he never did. I was convinced he’d broken into someone’s house, but I guess he just left and I missed him.

A couple weeks ago, he starts coming back almost every day. Instead of stealing bikes and wandering the neighborhood, he walks directly to the neighbor’s house across the street, finds a few cigarette butts, pockets and few, lights one up and walks away. While that’s pretty disgusting, he’s no longer acting high like that first day.

What I really want to do is buy some of those exploding cigarette loads and put them in the butts on my neighbor’s porch. That’d be hilarious to watch him light up and KABLOOM! Maybe I could get a cigarette and leave about an inch of tobacco on it, so it looks like the most appealing one in there so he’s sure to take it. Even if I don’t get to see it blow up as he lights up, it’d still be hilarious to think that it’ll happen to him at some point in the day.

Should I really do this though? He’s just a guy looking for a smoke. Is it wrong to set off explosives in a stranger’s face? Is it legal even? I mean, they’re just a prank item, something I used to occasionally do to friends of mine in school and at work as a teenager. They can’t actually hurt you. It seems kind of cruel do to do a stranger, though. On the other hand, he is stealing from their porch. But he’s just stealing trash. But he did try to steal a bike! Even if that might be purely circumstantial and he was just walking up to a bike that someone else had attempted to steal earlier that morning. Oh, the decisions I have to make…


  • Go for it. I’d love to see you get video of thatt of that. It’ll probably start a feud between the dude and the neighbors with the butts. Your plan could produce all kinds of entertainment!

  • You’re rbcp. Of course you have to do it. Who else?

  • It won’t hurt him. Of COURSE you should do it! Who are you anyway. To ask such questions! It’d be hilarious. You should try to video it too, then post it.

  • Do it! Do it do it do it!! Upsetting smokers is fun, especially the desperate ones.

  • You’re overthinking. What are you, a chick? So it already. ;)

  • I remember a guy I used to know would stand outside of the Emergency room at the hospital and get the cigs out of the ashtrays. They weren’t butts,but whole cigs with just a drag or two taken off of them.

  • Do it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • how is this a moral dilemma?

    If you want some justification, let me hose something up for you real quick:

    1.He might quit smoking cause of you are helping driving away the criminal element from your hood.

    There! you are good to go!

  • Just saying, if the shock of an exploding cigarette turns him away from smoking (or ashtray mining at the very least) he’d owe you forever. Plus it’d make a great video.

  • I just purchased cigarette loads. Hopefully this place won’t take forever to ship them.

  • Now my dilemma is whether or not to tell these neighbors that I’m going to do this. I don’t catch them outside too often, especially this time of year.

  • I wouldn’t advice notifying them unless you’re certain they won’t freak out. Believe me, sometimes people freak out when you try to blow people up on their property.

  • i remember those loads!

  • No don’t tell your neighbors. It will blow your cover as a nice quiet guy and then you won’t get away with anything fun in your neighborhood again.

  • Ooh, I would have a dilemma with not telling or telling the neighbor. Tough one.

  • Wait, what is an exploding cigarette load? I went to the site that the user “rbcp” linked to, but it doesn’t explain it very well. Does it turn the cigarette into a bottle rocket?

  • Jimmy – you put them in the cigarette and they make it explode in their face when they light up. Just like in old Warner Bros. cartoons.

    By the way, they arrived today and I bought a pack of cigarettes yesterday. I’ll plant them soon.

  • Just an update – I put a couple loaded cigarettes into their ashtray on January 1st, and then he suddenly stopped showing up. I hadn’t seem him for weeks, until this morning. I opened my blinds this morning and there he was, walking up to their porch to get cigarette butts.

    So I loaded up another cigarette and dropped it in there before taking the kids to school. I’m thinking of setting up my old security camera at the window, pointed at their porch for a few weeks. It captures motion and saves it to the hard drive for me. Maybe I’ll actually get it exploding. Though he didn’t immediately light up this morning when he took one. But my loaded cigarette that has a whole inch left on it might be too hard to resist lighting up immediately.

  • It’s been a bit over a month. Is he still around? Have you setup the old security camera yet?

    I’ve actually pulled the exploding smokes trick to a coworker and it was hilarious!

    We had a new guy that found out I smoked at the time and would daily beg for two cigarettes.

    One day after payday I went to the trick shop and got a few choice items, including the cigarette loads. I pocketed the loads, bought a new pack of smokes, and on the train ride to work, I loaded three of the cigarettes with the exploding loads. I put them back into my pack upside down so I knew which ones to grab.

    Once I got to work I gave him the three loaded smokes and told him to make them last because I was almost out.

    After two hours, I went on break along with my counterpart and came back after 15 minutes. My partner and the new guy went on break once I returned.

    About 5 minutes later, we heard the following message over the radio from the new guy: “VERY FUNNY MOBILE 4!”

    I start to laugh because I had a really good idea what just happened.

    I look over at my boss, who gives me a puzzled look. I mouth the words “I’ll explain later” and could only imagine what happened.

    15 minutes later my partner is walking down the corridor with a look that confirmed what happened. He was trying really hard not to burst out laughing and was fighting back tears of laughter.

    I asked my partner “Ok, you have to tell me, what happened?!”

    My partner smiled and said “Oh man, we got to the break room with some pizza slices when he lit one of the cigarettes. He took a puff, and breathed it out. He took a second puff, and breathed that one out too. He started to inhale on that third puff, and BLAM! I was taking a bite of pizza when that happened and almost choked man. That thing looked just like the cartoons man! That cigarette was just gone! That’s when he got on the radio and said that.”

    After I heard that, I was laughing even harder. I walked over to my boss and told him what I did. My boss laughed and just said “Serves him right! He keeps bumming my cigarettes too!”

    After a few more hours, at lunch break, I saw the new guy again, and just said “Man, that was COLD! I’m sitting here, having a smoke, and that thing just exploded man.”

    He wasn’t mad, but made sure to check the other two smokes really carefully before he smoked them.

  • Hey Max, nice story! I haven’t seen him at all since the last update. Hopefully he’s gone for good. But he’s probably plotting some horrible revenge on my neighbors. I’m sure glad I’m not them!

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