This continues to puzzle me. OK not really I totally get it. Laws are for regular born secular Canadians only and anyone from a desert backwater with no actual water gets to make up their own rules in flagrant violation of the law with total impunity. The anti smoking laws in Ottawa are so draconian that if you own a bar, and close it for a party to which people are invited, they will send police if they get a whiff of it to the parking lot and raid the place if someone has a cigarette. The fine to the bar will not be trivial. I’m serious. I know. I was asked to attend such a party. They enforce the non smoking laws way beyond the letter of the law. Why? Because they wrote the law to appear somewhat rational but enforce it for the true agenda of eliminating smoking. Yet oddly, if you have a restaurant that is owned and operated by someone from an Arab culture, then not only can you smoke at it, you can smoke indoors.
So I saw the sign you see above on a very busy street in Ottawa’s fashionable market area which teems with people good weather or bad and went in and asked about it. You can rent the hookah for ten dollars and the actual Shisha is free or, you can buy a box of Shisha for home use for $10.00 in any case, you pay ten bucks you get to break all the smoking bylaws with total impunity. I might add, that to sell tobacco products in Ontario, the province where Ottawa unhappily finds itself, requires hard to get licenses, high fees, strict regulations, and special displays which, well do not display. The cabinets your tobacco products are in must be not labeled or have any indication that tobacco is in them at all. yet you can just buy this stuff at any one of these place. Right over the counter. No ID. No nothing. Well you do need ten dollars.
My questions started to alarm the owner/operator however and when I asked if this was tobacco he answered “No. This is Organic” to which I replied, “Tobacco is organic this is just flavored tobacco is it not”
“No. Not tobacco. This orrrganic” I presume he rolled his R to emphasize the organic nature of it.
Somehow he felt if this shisha shit isn’t called tobacco then it would be OK. I dare anyone to go into a bar and light say, a crayon on fire and start smoking it. Or dried turnips. Then see how long till the bylaw enforcement officers get there or more likely the police if you refused to leave when the owner inevitably forces you too. But to be clear, a day earlier I went into a head shop on a nearby street to this Shawarama Shisha shop which had hookah’s in the window and asked what shisha is.
“It’s flavored tobacco” She answered sweetly. Original research is a good idea so we do not have to rely on this:
Shisha is tobacco that has been mixed with molasses and flavoured. Fruit-flavoured shisha is most popular, but other flavors include coffee, cola and Earl Grey.
Shisha is smoked out of a water pipe, usually called a hookah. The shisha is placed in a small bowl at the top of the hookah and burned using a small coal on top of aluminum foil or similar sort of material covering the shisha. The bowl containing the shisha has holes in the bottom allowing the smoke to travel down the body and into a water-filled chamber at the base of the hookah. The water cools and adds moisture to the smoke before it’s sucked out through a connecting hose by the person smoking.
So once again, just in case anyone is not aware of this…
Laws are only for ‘The Stupid White Man’.
The idea is, that the social engineers ever trying to justify their bloated budgets and vent their sanctimony on us, will regulate all the fun out of life till your baby is in a full Hannibal Lechter restraint suit facing backwards in the back seat of the car strapped in to a plastic bucket so that the safety air bag won’t kill him in case you hit something. Unless of course, you are an immigrant with no job or working knowledge of the local language. Then you have your brood loose in your government paid for Dodge Caravan. And of course, you can smoke in an Arab business because after all,
That… Is their ‘culture’
I know lot’s of bars in Alberta that moved in VLT machines to make up for the money they lost when the smoking ban came. And these are people that always said they would never allow VLT’s in their bar.
I wonder if being Native or French would get you a pass on the no smoking laws? It is synonymous with their culture as well.
I don’t smoke the hookah but have a few friends that do and I got the low down from them. I have been to a hookah bar and tried it a few times back in the day. I have never tried this tobacco shisha you are talking about. Sure its out there but not commonly used, well at least not in my experience. Maybe instead of organic, the owner should have said herbal. Spices and herbs are used instead of tobacco which means no nicotine and no tar. Also it may look like all smoke but it is mostly a mist that you exhale.
As long as it is the tobaccoless shisha no laws are broken, let them smoke their bongs.
I wonder if stringed instruments are playing (you know guitars) and female singers are singing ( you know the voices of the shayateen) in their hookah joints. Let’s face it, what’s another law broken when you have carte blanche to break as many as you like with cultural and government backed multicultural approval, Islamophobia to fall back on as a promotional defense, free legal aid to go along with the subsidized Dodge Caravan and a petrified media who won’t print your name. This should put the sales of a pack of Camels mixed with raspberry juice through the roof. Good times!
Terry read the post again. I checked online AND at a place that sells it. It is tobacco.
“No. Not tobacco. This orrrganic” I presume he rolled his R to emphasize the organic nature of it.
Well I have just checked online and have seen many varieties with AND without tobacco.
All I meant was maybe the shisha in question was of the non tobacco variety. Such as Black Label herbal, Hydro herbal and Soex to name a few. The second hand smoke dangers of these products are less comparable to burning incense.
Like I said, IF it’s tobaccoless shisha, let them smoke their bongs.
Don’t get me wrong here man. I think we all should be allowed to smoke whatever the fuck we want so long as the owner of the place says its OK. What gets me is not that they smoke whatever crap they want in these places, its that we are not allowed to have a beer watch the hockey game and smoke a cigarette. Apparently, that is NOT our culture. Yet these guys get a special exemption to smoke tobacco indoors at their burger king equivalents because it is theirs.
Hey Eeyore, I’m going to have to agree with Terry on this one. There are several different types of hookah out there, many don’t have tobacco. IF they are using regular tobacco, then not cool. If they are using herbal, then as much as you may dislike their culture (I’ve spent a year in the middle east and trust me, I can sympathize) you will have to look deeper into the law to see if it covers only tobacco or if herbal smoked products are also covered. And don’t always trust the “experts”. Head shops are like pet shops. People work there because they like the hobby and probably have a decent knowledge of things, but quite often there are too many different products for them to know it all. Part of my job is finding information, and one thing I’ve learned is that you only take word of mouth if it backs up extensive research. Open your logic 1010 class book, or wikipedia “logical fallacy” before you guys keep butting heads.
Mucifer, Vancouver already passed legislation allowing for tobacco so be used in these things as it is a ‘cultural’ issue for Arabs. http://hotair.com/archives/2007/09/27/muslims-win-exception-to-smoking-ban-in-vancouver/
I don’t know if Ottawa has officially made an exception for Arab smoking places but they do not enforce the bylaw when tobacco is being used the way they do,and they do very aggressively, when anyone else allows a cigarette or cigar to be smoked. There most certainly is an exception being made. I have sent my own people to some places and it was tobacco.
Traditional shisha tobacco (Mu’assel) is tobacco, mixed with molasses and flavoured with fruits, spices or something else.
There are non-tobacco alternatives, that substitute the tobacco with something else, commonly tea or Sugarcane Bagasse. These alternatives have flourished precisely because of tobacco bans in North America and Europe.
The shisha lounges in most Canadian cities (if not all) are allowed to serve for public consumption in their lounges only the non-tobacco alternative. At first, they may have been exempted from the bans, but over time those exemptions were taken away.
For hardcore shisha smokers, this is crap. They want to smoke tobacco which they may have developed an addiction to, and will stay home smoking tobacco shisha, as to smoke it without nicotine is a waste of their time and money.
These shisha lounges cater to the university students and college crowd looking for something multicultural (new hip) to do.
It is not araby ppls fault if the governments made special exemptions for them. Shisha lounge owners were upset about the bylaws, JUST LIKE EVERY RESTAURANT AND PUB OWNER. and lobbied for exemptions JUST LIKE BARS THAT ONLY ADMITTED PPL OVER 18 WANTED EXEMPTIONS TO ALLOW SMOKING. And Casinos lobbied for exemptions. Any business person who believes allowing tobacco consumption leads to higher profits would lobby against bylaw or for exemptions. It is the capitalist way.
so your editorializinig was unfair.
Phatcat I accept your criticism actually. The main point however, the notion of selective enforcement being detrimental to a society, stands. It is a ferociously bad idea to give special permissions to one culture and an alien one at that, while denying those same rights to native Canadian culture.
Having grown up in Canada, I can tell you that going to a bar, smoking ciggs and drinking beer and watching hockey is Canadian culture. Yet oddly the powers-that-be have decided that if newcomers to Canada want to smoke tobacco, thats just fine as its their culture while ours becomes in fact illegal.
You are also correct however. It is not the fault of Arabs who asked for, and received exemptions from totalitarian laws. It is the fault of our own lefty law makers.
Thank you for the comment.
Well, I should note i came to this page due to the promise of “Free Shisha” in the title, and was a little disappointed that this isn’t what the page was about. I agree with you, smoking bans are socialistic. Each business should be able to decide for itself whether to allow it. If the public really wants smoke-free restaurants, some restaurants would become smoke-free on their own.
But if I may add 2 points:
1. People that go to shisha lounges go there precisely for the purpose of smoking. Ppl go to pubs and restaurants to eat or drink, and some may not be smokers. If you look at the US, where individual choice still reigns supreme, there are often exemptions for cigar bars, but not everywhere.
2. Having now reviewed other posts of yours, I note u have an interest in the culture clash between Islamic cultures and the west. One link connects “muslims” to shisha (above link). It should be noted that in Islamic countries, shisha lounges are something of a counterculture. While smoking was not historically seen as “haram” (Forbidden) in Islam, like alcohol, & so historically was not punished, the religious leadership has always discouraged it, believing that it was not haram only because tobacco was unknown at the time of the Prophet Muhammed.
In Iran, until recently, shisha smoking was offered at every restaurant and cafe, and ppl often smoked it on picnics. But now, the religious leadership (always critical of it) has banned it everywhere, with severe punishment to violators:
Also, note that almost all shisha lounges, including in the middle east, offer belly dancers as entertainment. IF you are familiar with what Islam expects of women in terms of behavior and dress (and ur other links indicate u are), u know that belly dancing, while a folk tradition, pushes the envelope. Scantily clad, always showing at least a bare stomach/navel, at least part of their dance routines including gyrations suggestive of copulation, and they often bend over to reveal cleavage to the audience. No “fundamantalist” muslim with strong views on how women should dress and behave would be comfortable in such an environment. Consider this video clip from an American hookah bar:
So, i think that you and your friends have developed some mistaken ideas about shisha culture.
Well first of all, that was a pretty low move making fun of the owner’s accent. Second of all, I’m Lebanese and what you call “shisha” can be found containing Tobacco or not, as in 100% herbal. I have been to that place you walked by on Dalhousie and it is Herbal… The reason why I know is because I can taste the spices which by the way is the most disgusting invention I have ever heard of. In case you did not know, even if these Arab cafes are allowed to have hookahs, they are not allowed to have Tobacco products at all or get fined just as if they were to have someone smoking a cigarette in their cafe. If you don’t know the law, you shouldn’t talk. Third of all, these places are not restaurants or clubs, they are purposely opened to sell shisha. Have you ever gone to a cafe that will charge you to sit down and smoke a cigarette? NO, OBVIOUSLY NOT. And no one will charge you 15$ for one cigarette now will they? These places that you people say you hate, are getting more and more populated by little white kids who think it’s cool to smoke this waterpipe. It’s actually an old tradition and only old people used to smoke it. Your law enforcements are not stupid, they caught on to the fact that there is shisha with tobacco and that is why they cannot have real tobacco in their shishas anymore unless they are outside, like 2 cafes on Sparks street. Stop being babies, all you people ever do is complain about how immigrants are coming to your country and everything is changing according to their culture and traditions. The French and English came here and killed most Native Americans, they stole their home, and those French and English are your ancestors so maybe you guys should look at what destruction and change you have done to others before beating down people that are helping this economy, welcoming you into their homes and showing you amazing and interesting new food and culture. You guys love their food but you can’t stand that they can smoke and you can’t? Their punished too so don’t worry. Herbal tastes like absolute garbage. Please stop being prejudice, you are all hypocrites.
The author of these blogs has proven his racism and xenophobia, easily seen through his display picture of a Muslim prophet dressed with a bomb as a turban. If this person knew what he/she was talking about before crying and making these racist blog posts they would have searched a little and realized the store owner was using herbal shisha(I’m from Ottawa and have been there so I would know). Please do not waste your time reading any of these racist and bigot blogs
If you can expalin to me how Islam is a race, then I will accept the label of racist. However I can show pretty much by any definition using the Koran itself that Islam is about as racist as it gets against pretty much all non-arabs and certainly non-Muslims.
First, as you called me racist, please explain to me how Islam is a race and how people who criticize, mock or ridicule it are racist.
First of all I want to point out that this guy who posted this blog is an idiot, But thats no surprise Canada is filled with them these days(most likely people that voted for Harper). There is really one simple answer to this and some of the people already posted it. If you don’t like smoke then DON”T GO INTO A PLACE THAT SELLS SHISHA!!!! I personally don’t drink, so I do not go to bars and clubs. You don’t see me crying like a “bitch” to the government. I don’t know your name so I will address you as “scum”, since I am sure I am not that far off. Now Scum, I am so sick and tired of people like you trying to force the rest of us how we should live. I am not interested in being told how to live and I don’t think anyone else likes that either. So next time you walk by a shisha place you can do one of two things, keep on walking, or go in and have a shisha. And I am not even going to address your views on Islam, because I can see you a nothing more then a ignorant Glen Beck want a be.
Thank you for your time Scum, Good luck at your next KKK meeting.
You think very badly of me. You accuse me of being an idiot, a KKK member, and scum. Yet you agree with me word, for bloody word.
You are saying exactly what I am say9iing. The only difference being, that I feel all bars ought to have the choice of allowing smoking or not. I personally do not smoke, and furthermore, smoke is far far more dangerous to me than to the average person. I really cannot go into a place that allows smoking. But all places should have the right to determine what is in their interests. Arab places should not have special rights. I’m sure you would agree with me that Arabs or Muslims or any demographic should not have special rights and privileges over the rest of Canadians should they? So let them smoke shisha or anything they want if they so choose, so long as it’s clearly marked at the door. Same goes for every other bar, restaurant or business in Canada.
So as I’m pretty confident you agree with me, and that you probably didn’t bother to read the post before writing your litany of insults, welcome to the idiot’s scummy KKK club! You’re in good company Mike.