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I have posted this response to a couple of blogs in the last two days and feel there is a message here for all! So I am posting a slightly edited version here today! It is in regards to rewards for milestones, and that idea that we can have just one cigarette!

To my way of thinking we are conditioned to expect rewards when we reach milestones! For my early ones, I told myself that I had done very well, and I should be able to have one cigarette for a reward! I realized eventually that the junkie in me was looking for anyway that he could find to get a toehold, and climb back into the drivers seat of my life! A cigarette is not a reward! It is a gang member that comes after you! And they come in packs of twenty! Once you burn one, the rest will come after you! And they will never stop. Pack after pack! They just keep coming! They take your time, your money, your dignity, and your self esteem. And when there is nothing left, they take your life!

That is why I believe we should give ourselve tangible rewards as we reach milestones! Treat yourself well! Respect what you have done, and protect it with your very life!


Help me! Please!

Posted by pir8fan Oct 26, 2011

Good morning my Friends and fellow EXers! Many of you know that I have been pretty quiet lately! That does not mean that I have not been here, and and have not been reading! What I have noticed, and to be fair one other person has pointed out to me, is that we come here everyday and celebrate our quits! We extend the hand of fellowship to our friends here! We celebrate enmasse on the Freedom Train! We gather and share humor. We rush to pick up our fallen comrades! And at the end of the day we are doing a great job with our quits! 

Everyday we come to the blogs, where we are most comfortable, and we share "Collateral Kindness"! But As I look back over the recent blogs, I have found a weakness in myself! I have written notes to so many people that I know, but have ignored the newest of us! I see blogs where people have reached their second or third day! They are reaching out for reaasurance, and getting 2 comments on their blog! I can do better than this. Today, I am asking you to help me, as I re-double my efforts to remember what those first few days were like! Please help me welcome our new neighbors to the community that exudes "Collateral Kindness" I can do better. I must do better. I will do better! Please, Help me!


Freedom Train 10/24/11

Posted by pir8fan Oct 24, 2011

Good morning Fellow EXer's! The Freedom Train is about to make it's daily run to Freedom from the slavery to nicotone and tobacco that we were once held in! I just want to ask everyone, newbies and elders alike,to come aboard and pay respect to those who celebrate major milestones today! Everyone should be celebrating their own Freedom everyday! Look at us! We are doing this! And doing it well!

The first stop for the Freedom Train this morning is to pick up a young Lady that has allowed me to hold her hand through some very rough times! Healthyjayjo(Jill) joins the One Year Club today! This young Lady has endured a health scare and radiation treatments! I have stood by and watched in awe, as she went through this, and never waivered in her commitment to live Smoke Free! So my Dear Sweet Jill, grab your prettiest party dress, and your best dancin' shoes! This Train is full speed ahead to come and get you! I hope that you will allow me the first dance! Congrats on the First Full Year of your Smoke Free Life!

The next stop for the Freedom Train this morning is for a Lady who first arrived on the scene here 200 Days ago! It was a bonfire night here at our home of "Collateral Kindness", and I knew that she was going to make it right away! Zinamarie showed up at that bonfire with(If memory serves) 7 cigarettes! I knew right away that with that level of immersion into the site on her first day, that she would be one of us forever! Zinamarie, congrats on the first 200 Days of your New and Improved Smoke Free Life! We are so proud of you girl! Hop on this Train! There is a huge celebration about to break loose!

This Train is bound for FREEDOM from the Evils of tobacco and smoking!!




Freedom Train 10/19/11

Posted by pir8fan Oct 19, 2011

Good morning fellow EXer's! Welcome aboard the Freedom Train! Once again I am at the throttle as the Train makes it daily run to Freedom from the bondage that held us so long! Come aboard, one and all! There are no tickets! The only thing you need to board is the desire to be FREE! Bring aboard all the extra baggage that is weighing you down in life! We will help you sort it out!

There are no milestones listed in the conductors notes today! If we are missing you please let me know A.S.A.P.! So in absence of major milestones I am going to pull a couple of people out of thin air and talk about them! My Dear Friend Sandy(keptpromise) has 286 Days today! Another wonderful Lady that is very close to my heart, Shannon(Wanting Freedom in SD) has 244 Days today! Neither are likely to know that they are on the Train today, unless someone tells them! And that is OK!

Many of us are "lifers" here! We will come to this site everyday,either because we need to, or because we love to! I like to think we distribute "Collateral Kindness" to the new people here! That is a win/win for all! On the other side of the coin, I realize that either by phone, or e-mail, or PM's, I have talked to a number of people in the last few days that are rarely here,or not here at all any more! That side of the coin is just as valuable! We have had a number of quitters come through here and find what they needed to defeat their addiction! And they have their lives back! The fact that are not here much, or at all is fantastic! They are success stories!

There are many success stories that we see here everyday! I like to think I am one! 656 Days of Freedom and going strong! I suspect that I will be around this site for the rest of my life! And that is OK!(I Hope). But we also have great success stories in those who have moved on, and are out there enjoying their lives away from the site! So, today let us remember our friends that found Freedom and regenerated their lives! It is not that they have left us. They go out and live their lives, and are a testament to what is possible here!   Anybody want to party??

This Train is bound for FREEDOM from the Evils of tobacco and smoking!!





Posted by pir8fan Oct 17, 2011

The follow is an edited re-post of a blog I wrote almost 600 Day ago! I hope there are some gems in here that will help you all! I almost took out the personal stuff, but I think seeing who I was back then, and knowing who I am today, can show you the possibilities that lie before you!

As Promised!! Who is this guy and why am I reading his blog??/

March 5, 2010 by pir8fanComments (13)

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Good afternoon! Today is day 64 for me. I hope everybody is doing good with their quit.


I am going to answer the second part of the question first. Why are you reading my blog? It is because I have learned some things. I am about to share those things with you, and, at the risk of sounding pompous I am going to give you some tools to help you not only keep your quit, but improve your very life.


As I read the various blogs I find everyone looking for just a little more than help with kicking a nasty addiction. There are loud screams, and soft cries from people with varying levels of desperation. Today I would like to share with you two stories that I have encountered that demonstrate FOCUS and DETERMINATION.


The first is about a lady named Trudy. In 1925 she dreamed of becoming the first woman, and only the sixth person to swim the English Channel. She made her plans until the day she set out in pea soup fog to make her dream a reality. She swam with all she had, for as long as she could, but finally had to give up. She was pulled aboard a boat, and later discovered she was only 1/4 of a mile from the shore. She realized that she could have made it if she had known how close she was. Her attempt to live her dream was crushed because she could not see how close she was. In 1926 Gertrude Ederle went back on a clear day, and became the first woman to swim the English Channel. This time she could see her goal. Her ability to focus on the shore helped her reach dream. And she did it more that 2 hours faster than any of the men who preceded her.


My second story is about a man more well known. His name is Sir Edmund Hillary, The first man to reach the summit of Mt. Everest, most know his fame for this accomplishment. Few know it was his second attempt. His first attempt was a failure. But the man was not a quitter. Two months after his failure while giving a speech at the base of Mt. Everest, Sir Edmund Hillary shook his fist at the mountain and proclaimed " I will get you next time, you are as big as you will ever be, but I am not done growing!" The rest is history.


For the second part of the question, Who is this guy? Nobody. I was at one time one of the best in-home sales people in the country. I made the decision to risk everything I had to save a franchise that I found out too late did not want to be saved. So I lost everything. Then cancer, then heart attack, then two torn Achilles tendons. I think I have found the bottom. BUT, today I start over. I will go forward with the Focus of Ederle, and the Determination of Hillary. I will prove that the bottom is just a place to bounce from.


I hope there is some inspiration here for everyone. Keep your FOCUS!! Never lose your DETERMINATION!! Tommy




Freedom Train!! 10/16/11

Posted by pir8fan Oct 16, 2011

Good morning fellow Exer's! It has been a while since I sat at the throttle of the Freedom Train! I have been riding, and watching, and enjoying everyone's celebrations! It is great to have a place where we can share in the victories, and milestones of out fellow travelers, on this marvelous journey! Join us one and all, as we travel to Freedom from the bonds of tobacco and nicotine!!

The first stop for the Freedom Train this beautiful Sunday morning is in the great state of Pennsylvania! We are on the way to Sootie's house! My Dear Friend Sootie has been very busy, and she completely forgot to smoke for the last 700 Days! Honestly, she did not forget! What she has accomplished is so much greater than that! She has Chosen to kick that addiction aside! She has elected to take back her life from the Simon Legree of addiction that works so hard for the tobacco producers!!

We are very fortunate to have this site, as a place to come to share our battles with like minded people! We are lucky indeed that we have have found this home of "Collateral Kindness", where we can come, and help ourselves by helping others! It is a wonderful thing, that we have the links to the education that we need to understand and break our own chains of bondage! That is the meat and potatoes of this site! The Gravy is the fact that we all seem to run into people who would be our closest ever friend, if they lived next door! While I have made many wonderful friends here (and I appreciate every one of you), the person that fits that category for me is Sootie! Most of you know that I tend to wear my heart on my sleeve! If I have something to say I am probably going to go ahead and say it! Right or wrong! Sootie has long been the friend that I have counted on to keep me grounded! While we do not agree on everything, I can count on her to be level-headed, honest and straight forward! So when she tell me I am wrong, I listen! At the end of the day, we may still not agree, but I have a heard an honest presentation of the other side! And, whether we agree or not, we remain Friends! If you do not know Sootie, look her up! You will never find a better person! So, Please, everyone raise your glasses in a toast to My Friend Sootie as she celebrates 700 Days of FREEDOM today!

The next stop for the Freedom Train today is in Virginia! Pipster540! Pip has completed 300 Days! Remember when 30 days seemed like a lifetime? Our great friend Pip has done that 10 times! Those of us who know Pip know that there is no one here who enjoy's a ruckus more! While Pip has been verry busy, and has had limited time here recently, we have long counted on Pip to show up at every ruckus bringing the pipcorn! Congrats on your first 300 Days!! We look forward to the time when life slows down enough that you can spend more time with us!!

Now, we are sending out a search party for Flossiemaeal! The Conductor's notes have her down for 200 Days today! I have looked, and can find no evidence of her being here lately! If anyone can can find her tell her we need her here to celebrate, today!

Last but not least we are headed to NYC to pick up Freda(Freedom)! Gotta love that name! Freda has 200 Smoke Free Days to celebrate today! So grab your best party dress honey, and climb aboard this train! There is a Party 'bout to break out!

Welcome one and all! Come and ride this Train today!

This Train is bound for FREEDOM from the Evils of tobacco and smoking!!




Thank you to all!

Posted by pir8fan Oct 13, 2011

Today the numbers on my quit clock read 650! I have recieved messages from a number of you! Thank you! Thank you all! I am sure that most of you are aware of the fact that we had to stop honoring multiples of 50 on the Freedom Train! It was not a decision that was made lightly! It was a matter of the magnitude of the task, exceding our ability to manage it! I tried looking at my clock today, and telling myself that it is just a multiple of 50! It is not a real milestone! I was doing pretty good at that until I started seeing messages of congratulation! What hit me between the eyes is that just because you don't get your name put up in lights, that in no way diminishes the accomplishment! Multiples of 50 are real milestones! If you count in months, those are milestones also! Everyday is a milestone! Some are just larger than others! It is apparent that the Freedom Train can not honor all milestones! We do try to get the biggest ones! But whether you are named on the Train on any given day, or not, come aboard and celebrate with us! Help us celebrate the big milestones of your fellow EXer's. But do not hesitate to celebrate yourself! Be Loud! Be proud! Celebrate the Freedom that you have found everyday! You are not only welcome, but, we want you to ride with us! We want you to share with us all, the joy you are finding in your Freedom! We are proud of every single person that shows up every single day! So come and ride, smell the sweet aroma of FREEDOM!                     Tommy


Please Pray!

Posted by pir8fan Oct 10, 2011

There is little that I can say! I can only ask you once again to lift our Dear Friend Dawn, and her family in prayer. This family has been through so much tragedy lately that it is hard to imagine! Today another tragedy has found these good people! Please ask God to be with Dawn, her daughters, her mother, and all of the rest of her family! We love you Dawn, and we will always be here for you!


The Freedom Train 10/08/11

Posted by pir8fan Oct 8, 2011

Good Morning Fellow EXer's across the fruited plain and around the world! It is a great day to be Smoke Free! It seem we have one of those rare days where there are no major milestones listed in the Conductor's notes! If you are celebrating a milestone and we don't know about it, hop on this Train and tell us about it! EVERYONE, please make sure that Marcie has your quit date! I know that there are some of you who have lost your quits and had to start over! Congrats on staying with it! But please make us aware of your new quit date! I hate it when we announce someone's milestone and then hear "Not so fast"!

Today as we move down the tracks to Freedom, I would like you all to rise for a moment, and tell us what you love about this site and community! It is a given that we are the best support group that one can find to help with our divorce from our brutal taskmaster. But what makes this place work for you?

I think that one of the greatest things here, is the ability of our members(for the most part) to be able to disagree, without being disagreeable! We are focused on a common goal and that (in most cases) is the most important thing! There are those who believe that drama and rucki have no place here! I am not of that school, but I respect those who are! I believe that our personal "Drama's" are an important part of our quits! Showing others that we can get through these things, just helps everyone recognize what can be done! This is a journey that we are taking together! Continue to practise "Collateral Kindness"! It is a great way to quit! It is a great way to live!

This Train is bound for FREEDOM from the Evils of tobacco and smoking!!



If you have never been honored on the Freedom Train, it means one of two things! You have not reached day 50 of your quit yet, or, we do not have your quit date. Please let Maggie, or Marcie know your quit date! Make sure you are in the Conductors notes! Don't just assume you are. Make sure! Missing the Train can be a sad event! I can assure you that we feel awful when we realize we have missed some one! And remember:


Total of UnSmoked Cigarettes burned in this fire:*insert drumroll*  2,010,674

Cigarettes contributed by non-members(thank you to all)               -  927,550

Cigarettes contributed by our active members (another drumroll)     1,083,124

You have all done yourself proud! Thank you for the support you have given me in this effort! I am EXtremely proud of this bunch of people! I am happy that you allow me to be a part of this great community!!! Again, THANK YOU ONE AND ALL!!! GOOD NIGHT!            TOMMY


About One Hour Left........

Posted by pir8fan Oct 2, 2011

..................before we end the greatest bonfire ever! Thank you all who made this a really special, event! I will post final numbers tomorrow! If there is anyone out there who did not make it to the fire, this is a last call for your unsmoked cigarettes! We still have a chance to hit 2,000,000!            Tommy


WITHOUT FURTHER ADO, I GIVE YOU ....................FIRE!!!!!!!

25,550 unsmoked cigarettes from..............ME!



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