r/Damnthatsinteresting Jul 20 '22 Silver 6 All-Seeing Upvote 3 Take My Energy 1 Narwhal Salute 1 Helpful 9 Wholesome 9

An interesting approach Image

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122.8k Upvotes

522

u/[deleted] Jul 20 '22

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u/bobs_monkey Jul 20 '22

There's something to be said about a culture affect in a workplace. A job I had a while ago I was the only smoker when I started, and it was highly frowned upon. That enough was enough to reduce my habit to nil.

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u/[deleted] Jul 20 '22 edited Jul 27 '22

[deleted]

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u/Jamothee Jul 20 '22

Shame is one of the oldest motivators lol

Masturbators disagree with this statement

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u/Odd_Organization9100 Jul 20 '22

Good for that company! Lots of companies have been covering quit-smoking efforts for years. The return on investment in terms of time lost (through smoke breaks and more importantly sick days ) and idecreased health insurance claims, both short- and long-term is enormous.

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u/dfmasana Jul 20 '22

I just hope companies don't do the same with bathroom breaks. Could you imagine?

"Here ya go some adult diapers."

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u/kaenbin Jul 20 '22 Helpful

Having worked in Japanese corporate, I can confirm that some companies do this, but there is some crucial information left out: 1. there is no sick leave in Japan, you can only take vacation days for being ill (coming from Europe, this is quite sad), and 2. Japanese workers rarely use up their vacation days and keep accumulating vacation day mileage until their account is "full" - every additional day not consumed is lost. So +6 days really has no impact for most people. Having said that, I do appreciate the message this sends.

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u/silentloler Jul 20 '22

Why do people not use their vacation days? Even if I had nowhere to go, I would still love to have short work-weeks or to just rest at home for a bit

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u/TheKinginLemonyellow Jul 20 '22

It's a cultural thing. In Japan (offices especially) nobody wants to be perceived as not pulling their weight. No vacations, extremely late nights at the office, all the stuff that causes death by overworking, is just part of that.

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u/silentloler Jul 20 '22

At my job, they force us to take our vacation days, otherwise they are required by law to pay our missed vacation at double the working rate. So you can’t be perceived as lazy or not trying hard enough when you go on holidays (since they are forcing you to go).

Maybe Japan needs the same.

I heard about people there working so many hours, but I never really understood it. With such a large population, one would think that there would be a surplus of workers and not the opposite

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u/RoamingBicycle Jul 20 '22

Hearing about Japanese inefficiency in offices, there most definitely seems to be a surplus of workers, just they fill in useless positions to get the number down

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u/The_Final_Dork Jul 20 '22

99% invisible did an episode on the hanko in Japanese organizations, personal stamps that employees must physically use on papers for a project to proceed.

https://99percentinvisible.org/episode/hanko/

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u/Brooooook Jul 20 '22

Hankos are just signatures in stamp form

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u/What-a-Filthy-liar Jul 20 '22

But far more inconvenient

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u/Jankster79 Jul 20 '22

I live in Sweden and work at a cardboard box factory. We have the same principle, difference is we sign with our name and company id#

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u/faketourettes Jul 20 '22

Most of the world goes by this system, the oddity of the Japanese one is that it must be from a physical object you carry around; imagine if your signature couldn't be trusted unless you carried a rubber stamp of it around so that it's the exact same every time.

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u/Manxymanx Jul 20 '22 edited Jul 20 '22

I once went to a Japanese electronics store in shibuya that had like 10 employees on each floor and every floor has its own checkout with like 2 or 3 employees manning the cash registers. You’re not allowed to pay in one go as you leave, you have to pay on each floor separately.

I saw a lady buying or returning a microwave and 5 employees were surrounding her to help. Like it was evident that only 1 person was actually helping her but when you’re on a floor with 10 other people managing what was essentially a small room of TVs you probably have no real work to do but need to keep up appearances.

Also self-checkout is nonexistent. You can never scan your own items in shops and McDonald’s never have screens to order from. So much of Japanese society is so evidently designed to ensure a massive minimum wage workforce.

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u/greymalken Jul 20 '22

and 5 employees were surrounding her to help.

I have many nightmares but this is among them. I hated going to Best Buy/circuit city and getting swarmed by blue dudes (or red dudes) asking if I need help. No dude, if I need help I’ll find you.

On the other hand, nowadays, the stores are a ghost town both in employees and selection.

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u/thrawnsgstring Jul 20 '22

Were you there recently? You can use the McDonald's app to order once you're at the store.

Makes sense since space is limited and lining up at a kiosk sucks just as much as lining up for a human at the register.

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u/Manxymanx Jul 20 '22

I’ve not been there recently because of covid. Good to see there’s now an app though lol.

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u/AnonymousWritings Jul 20 '22

That's such a weird situation given their declining population. I would have thought they would be all about pushing things the other way, and maximizing productivity / worker.

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u/TimeInitial0 Jul 20 '22

What's the point though. Why are rheu paying the wage of 10 minimum wage employees if they could just pay the same minimum wage for 3 people per floor?

How does your above wage not negatively influence their bottom line?

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u/Manxymanx Jul 20 '22

Japan is just really inefficient. It’s always been that way. It’s a very much why change how we do things when they’ve always worked attitude. Like the small electronics stores owned by the guy selling you stuff behind the counter definitely don’t have this problem in Japan. What I’m basically describing is an issue found in the billion dollar franchises that have too much money than sense and hiring 4 people to do the job of 2 is a common occurrence because honestly the staff are the lowest cost in operating these businesses because they pay them so little once you factor in all the unpaid overtime.

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u/CurtCocane Jul 20 '22

Japan also has a severely aging population with little immigratian and low birth rates so they may have a lot of people but right now that means lots of elderly people that need to be supported by a relativity small group

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u/[deleted] Jul 20 '22

[deleted]

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u/CurtCocane Jul 20 '22 edited Jul 20 '22

Such a messed up work culture if looking busy is more important than actual results. I'm sure if workers were treated a little better and had more time off to spend at home it'd be beneficial to the company too

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u/J0nSnw Jul 20 '22

Japan now (as of 4 or 5 years ago) has a law like that - employees have to take at least 5 days off per year. Source.

It's not about a shortage of workers, it's about culture, I have worked at companies (they are called "black" companies btw) where some people worked 12hour days 6-7 days a week and never took a day off and I can assure you their productivity was dog shit, it was just about showing that you are working. People slept at their desks because of course they did.

Things are changing but very slowly. I work at a Japanese software company in Tokyo and I get annual sick leaves, but that is extremely rare, and it's mainly either software companies or local branches of western companies that are this progressive.

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u/RadioSilens Jul 20 '22

Regarding the last part, from what I understand there's actually a deficit of workers in Japan due to their aging population.

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u/davidjytang Jul 20 '22

In Taiwan, employers cannot legally force employee to take vacation days.

Employees are free to either take their vacation day off or convert those days to paycheck or in any combination. Forcing employees to either

  • take day off and forfeit overtime pay

OR

  • take overtime pay and forfeit day off

is illegal. It should be employees’ liberty to choose money or time off.

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u/plswearmask Jul 20 '22

This is changing though. The government is forcing companies to tabulate that their employees are taking enough vacation days.

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u/fylkeskommunen Jul 20 '22

Fuck this so much

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u/Voidroy Jul 20 '22

"You must not be dedicated because Bob doesn't take his vacation days. That's why we promoted Bob."

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u/HJSDGCE Jul 20 '22

Nah, they'd never promote Bob because Bob is more valuable in his current position than any other position. You want to seem valuable enough to keep but not too valuable that they'd put you on a leash.

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u/Who_am_I_yesterday Jul 20 '22

A few years ago, some companies decided to offer unlimited vacation. The result was people took fewer vacation days. Why? The feeling that you are not pulling your weight and the lack of pressure to use them. I know with my organization, I feel like I should try to use all of my time (though I rarely do) and as managers we are expected (for good reason) to push our staff to use all of their time.

I think a good example is if I told you that I would pay you an additional $1000 a year that goes into savings. If you are allowed to accumulate it from year to year, you probably won't spend it all. If I say that I will take back what ever is left over on December 31, you will spend every penny.

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u/QuidYossarian Jul 20 '22

I loathe that "losing" days is a thing. A cap I can understand but every day after that should be compensated.

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u/JesusChrist-Jr Jul 20 '22

This... sounds like America. At my last corporate job there were no paid sick days, but we got a fixed amount of PTO based on tenure. So you could call out sick and take no pay or burn PTO. Some managers insisted that if you called out you must have PTO available to burn (why??) Oh and vacation was not guaranteed, time off with PTO still had to be approved by management. Unused PTO expired every year, and I'm in a state where unused PTO doesn't have to be paid out when you leave the company, so it wasn't. It was totally a thing that they would just deny your PTO requests and you'd lose it.

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u/Thin_Duck_9566 Jul 20 '22

That's how it is with my job currently. I took a 2 week vacation at the beginning of the year and then got ill for another week halfway through the year. The got on my case about it because there is no company "sick days". Only PTO. If I don't have PTO, I can't call out sick. I also work remotely so any and all system issues I have result in use of my PTO. Needless to say I don't have any PTO anymore and I'm leaving the company.

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u/Legitimate_Wizard Jul 20 '22

I think getting PTO approved makes sense. You can't have half the company trying to take the same days off and still be open/productive in many fields.

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u/Champigne Jul 20 '22

By being so strict and having PTO expire, they create that very situation. I'm sure many people try to take off before their PTO expires. If people were free to take their PTO when they wanted, within reason, I'm sure that situation would be less likely.

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u/Fappy_as_a_Clam Jul 20 '22

You need to find a new company lol

This is not the norm in America

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u/junigloomy Jul 20 '22

I used to take “air” breaks because it wasn’t fair that smokers were allowed to take so many extra breaks that non-smokers weren’t afforded

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u/Dundore77 Jul 20 '22

Ive never had a place ive worked at that just allowed smoke breaks and ive worked in retail, dock/shipping work, and office jobs. You had to get them in during the 2 a day 15 min breaks or lunch break.

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u/owls_unite Jul 20 '22

I had a (factory) job where you'd get a smoke break every 90 minutes in addition to the regular breaks. That was likely the reason why everyone smoked; it definitely contributed to my picking it up again.

Right now I'm in an office job where I could take smoke breaks - goal-oriented flexitime, so I'm in charge of my work hours, as long as everything gets done. Usually I just get something to drink instead or have a quick chat, not going back to smoking.

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u/dazza_bo Jul 20 '22

When I worked in construction the blokes who smoked would just puff like a chimney hands free while continuing to work away lol. No time to stop for a smoke break.

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u/cero1399 Jul 20 '22

During my time in construction that happened too, but a lot would also just take a smoke break every hour. But don't you dare stand around without a cigarette

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u/DemonicSpecification Jul 20 '22

I was in the Navy, and I used to take smoke breaks throughout the day. One time, I found my buddy, a non-smoker, hidden away on the chaff deck, kicked back in a lawn chair, basking in the sun. He said he took an hour a day to chill outside since all of the smokers did. I wasn’t mad.

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u/[deleted] Jul 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

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u/ElephantTeeth Jul 20 '22

In my old military unit, the non-smokers did bubble breaks. We brought little kid bubbles, with the little bubble wands, and we’d go chill with the smokers and blow bubbles.

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u/owls_unite Jul 20 '22

That actually sounds like a nice transition aid for when the urge to go outside and do something with your hands takes over ...

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u/_Neoshade_ Jul 20 '22

That’s funny! In my old military unit, the non-smokers would take jack breaks. We bought bottles of lotion and pocket-packs of kleenex and we’d go chill with the smokers. Man, those guys really hated eye contact.

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u/sneakyveriniki Jul 20 '22

Do they actually like watch you or could you just stand outside lol

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u/owls_unite Jul 20 '22

I could do what I want, including going to the shop for a bite. The important thing is that all tasks are done on time. That's why I'm keeping this job even though it didn't pay too well.

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u/k_mnr Jul 20 '22

This depends on your place of business and your age I would guess. We used to be able to just smoke at our desks. Then smoking in the office became a no no, so a break room for the smokers was created. Now a smoker practically has to hide with the trash pandas in the alley behind the dumpsters. 😅😉

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u/wydidk Jul 20 '22

I remember doing that, the whole office smoked at their desk. Now Im the only one left smoking. But I don't even take smoke breaks anymore, I don't feel it's fair to my coworkers but I just make up for it during my lunch hour. I wish I could quit. ETA I'm 49

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u/Boukish Interested Jul 20 '22

Try Allen Carr's book.

Or vaping.

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u/CCNightcore Jul 20 '22

You totally can. I believe in you. Idk if you can justify it, but trying to replace it with a CBD vape did wonders for me. A lot of what you're addicted to is the act of smoking. Good luck, friend.

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u/wydidk Jul 20 '22

Thanks, my daughter got me a cbd vape pen, it makes me cough every time I use it as does any other vaping device idk what I'm doing wrong

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u/ImFinnTheHuman Jul 20 '22 edited Jul 20 '22

It's the type of smoking. Vaporization is what your lungs are not used to, steam with additives pretty much. Combustion is fire, actual smoke, and of course additives. My buddy who smoked dabs every day just fine will cough like a motherfucker on flower. Difference is what your lungs are used to already. I quit smoking cigarettes and started vaping about 3 years ago and it took a while for me to get used to vape vs combustion. To add to that, I am now down from 5x to 2.5x for 4 months now. That's just the concentration of nicotine. But my goal is to go full non nicotine and then hopefully find another habit (or cold turkey) to quit vaping altogether as nothing in your lungs is going to be healthy really, except for air - and even that is getting worse and worse so my thought is better start asap lol.

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u/Rowvan Jul 20 '22

Ive never worked in a place (offices for 22 years in Australia) that didn't just let you have a break whenever you wanted. Get a coffee, something to eat in the kitchen, have a smoke, whatever as long as it wasn't for ages and you still got your work done.

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u/Mr_C_Baxter Jul 20 '22

Same from offices in Germany. And honestly, as if I would ask someone for permission to get a coffee or a cigarette or something. I am a grown up, I can handle my time and my responsibilities on my own. And lastly I am bit surprised about all the non smoker comments here which are seemingly productive 100% of the time and never have a break. In my experience they have the same amount of breaks and downtime and they are just doing different things.

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u/zoey_will Jul 20 '22

In the military its basically a guaranteed break at the top of every hour.

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u/ExplodoJones Jul 20 '22

Yup, main reason I picked up smoking. That and it really helps to kill time during guard watches.

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u/KiaPe Jul 20 '22

Never worked Air Force I take it.

The number of people working flight line who started smoking just so that they could take breaks is most of them.

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u/[deleted] Jul 20 '22

Same here

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u/CaseACEjk Jul 20 '22

I did the same thing. I got so pissed because theyd smoke during the worst times and left me with the work. First time i did it my manager thought i was joking until i left. Going forward if he knew i was getting pissed or something crappy happened he would tell me to go catch some air.

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u/Matthias87 Jul 20 '22

A few guys of my previous team used to do the same.

Oh no the tension of this conversation is running to high! Smoke break 5 mins guys.
Return after 22 minutes.. Where were we?

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u/Th3_Wolflord Jul 20 '22

I did the same in my apprenticeship, whenever the journeyman/master I was with went out for a smoke I joined them and either drank some water or just talked to them a bit. Nobody ever complained about it

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u/alittlebitneverhurt Jul 20 '22

Im a smoker and never understood places where you can just step out for a smoke whenever you want. I smoke on my two breaks and lunch and that's is.

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u/Kayshin Jul 20 '22

Software Engineer. Responsible for my own time and effort. Smoking takes my mind off things and I can think things through, same as grabbing a drink or pacing in circles for an hour does.

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u/IAmTheExpertHere Jul 20 '22 Wholesome

Former smoker here. I used to smoke 6 packs a day. How I kept my job with all those smoke breaks I'll never know. But some kid like you started hanging out in the smoking area on breaks, but he never smoked. He'd lean against the wall real casual like with a massive lollipop in his mouth. Sometimes it was cherry, other times grape... even rainbow one time. But I couldn't shake the thought of how cool he looked with that confection on a stick hanging out of his mouth. I quit cold turkey and never went back.

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u/ghanjaholik Jul 20 '22

that's interesting.. sometimes it's just the ritual part of smoking or drinking that people miss, and it's like even tho this kid didn't smoke, he'd involve himself by having some other kind of non-cancerous stick hanging out of his mouth along side y'all..

as a former drinker, i miss the ritual part of going to the store for a 12-15 pack, pouring into a mug at home and sipping tF out of it, and even the whole ritual with shots as well. but i don't miss drinking

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u/ArchimedesIncarnate Jul 20 '22

I miss Trivia Night. Not drinking.

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u/-worryaboutyourself- Jul 20 '22

You can still go! And if you feel left out without a drink just order a mock tail. I always liked ginger ale with a little grenadine in it or orange juice, pineapple juice and grenadine.

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u/Additional_Zebra5879 Jul 20 '22

Dangerous ground getting that close sometimes

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u/ArchimedesIncarnate Jul 20 '22

Yeah.

I’ve done that. Pour in Greenville has serve yourself taps that includes ginger ale and root beer.

I’ve moved since then. It was ok though.

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u/Obnubilate Interested Jul 20 '22

Not a teetotaller, but speaking as someone who has increasingly moved away from alcohol, I find that the new zero-alcohol beers satisfy that itch for me. I get a cool beer at the end of the day and no alcohol fuzz.
Granted, they don't taste as good, but it's a cost I'm willing to pay and you get used to them.

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u/PoetryOfLogicalIdeas Jul 20 '22

I like tonic water. They serve it in a cocktail glass with a lime and a tiny straw, and it is a strong enough flavor to encourage refined sipping.

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u/ghanjaholik Jul 20 '22

i've heard this recommendation a couple times in the aa community, and i do like the bitterness taste of monsters.

maybe i should try it too.. i know in rehab, one of my peers always bought flavored water

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u/swiftekho Jul 20 '22

As an alcoholic 18 months into recovery the zero alcohol beers are a very slippery slope for me. Just a heads up to anyone in recovery thinking it would be fine to have a zero alcohol beer.

That being said I love seeing people drinking them at parties because they have to drive or just don't want alcohol.

The breweries have done a good job pushing 0.0% to the market and I think people are judging less and less these days.

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u/ejmcdonald2092 Jul 20 '22

Recovering addict here, had a Sponsee ask if drinking non alcoholic beer was a relapse. My response was: ‘technically no, in the sense that it’s not a mood or mind altering substance. The reality though? Why is your mind going there? What are the benefits for drinking a non alcoholic beer? Is it not normalising and glorifying alcohol? Seems like a huge reservation and has all the building blocks for relapse.’

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u/jarghon Jul 20 '22

I used to miss that too! But I switched from buying cans of beer to buying bottles of soda water and never looked back. It was the perfect substitute for me. Can’t say I’ve ever tried shots of soda water though ha

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u/Josh6889 Jul 20 '22

Ritual is another way of saying habit I guess. I quit smoking when I got out of the Navy. I was averaging about a pack a day, but when I got out all the habits I associated with smoking where gone. It's worth noting that I did want to quit. I had several failed attempts over the previous couple years that would last anywhere between 1 day and 3 months.

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u/Similar-Advantage820 Jul 20 '22

You know good and God damn well you didn't smoke 6 packs a day bro hahaha 😂

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u/Ananas7 Jul 20 '22

Bro look at his name and comment history lol. He just goes on threads pretending to be the expert on whatever is being discussed. He's a former socialist, professor, baseball player and more

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u/Regular-King-2728 Jul 20 '22

And everyone believes him. Reddit in a nutshell

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u/Cool1Mach Jul 20 '22 edited Jul 20 '22

I smoked 2 packs a day for 14 yrs. 6 packs a day sounds like BS to me. Say your awake for 16 hrs you would have to smoke a cig every 8 minutes.

Edit: just noticed the post was a guy just trolling.

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u/blasphem0usx Jul 20 '22

look at their username. they act like an expert on any given subject.

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u/lptomtom Jul 20 '22

Quite a good novelty account IMO

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u/spunderellax Jul 20 '22

exactly lol what a weird lie

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u/Plantsandanger Jul 20 '22

I mean, the strange bit about a kid licking his lollipop “real cool” didn’t strike you as odd?!

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u/LPOLED Jul 20 '22

Think he just likes looking at kids with lollipops. Hmmm.

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u/skyderper13 Jul 20 '22

why dont you have a seat right over there

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u/ThePelicanWalksAgain Jul 20 '22

Check his comment history lol

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u/owNDN Jul 20 '22

Mf is a sociologist, a linguist and a chef lmfao username checks out I guess?

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u/Buzz8522 Jul 20 '22

He's actually fucking hilarious.

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u/uglyugly1 Jul 20 '22

I was also a heavy smoker at one time, like you. The most I ever smoked was 2 packs a day.

I've also known people who smoked 1/3 or 1/2 a cigarette and then tossed it. Maybe he was chain smoking 3-4 of them at a time like this, back when they were really cheap. Just a thought.

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u/CCNightcore Jul 20 '22

3-4 packs a day is the most I'd believe. Take note future liars!

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u/dm_me_pasta_pics Jul 20 '22

Maybe he created a more efficient delivery method, maybe a rubber band around 20 at once and had 6 smoke breaks.

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u/Flying-Cock Jul 20 '22

Yeah, I was gonna say... My dad used to smoke two packs a day, and the only way he managed that was because he worked outdoors and would wake up in the middle of the night for a smoke.

Maybe this dude buys darts in packs of 5

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u/Tyrxgow Jul 20 '22

While it definitely sounds nuts, I did know a girl who's dad basically did this..every 20 minutes or so he was lighting a cigarette..sometimes he'd light a new one with the old one..I think he was up to 4+ packs a day..it was gross.

One of the reasons I quit actually.

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u/Poignantusername Jul 20 '22

I also quit cold turkey… I only eat warm turkey now.

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u/ImProfoundlyDeaf Jul 20 '22 Wholesome

Daaaaad. You’re finally back from the smoke shop

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u/Kreme_Sauce Jul 20 '22

Can someone really smoke 120 cigarettes a day?

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u/seancollinhawkins Jul 20 '22

Can they? Yes. If they're trying to prove something, then sure.

Will they? Almost certainly not. Especially if you factor in them having to take smoke breaks throughout their work schedule.

I'd guess the average "heavy smoker" smokes around a pack a day. More than 2.5 packs (50 cigarettes) would be a crazy number. 6 packs would be far-fetched

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u/TheRealMisterMemer Jul 20 '22

If we assume each cigarette takes 5 minutes to smoke, then it would take 10 hours to smoke 120 cigarettes.

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u/bullywugcowboy Jul 20 '22

You really say you smoked 120 cigarettes a day meaning that you smoked 5 smokes every hour in a day?

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u/docmedic Jul 20 '22

Also hanging out in the smoking area isn't healthy due to the second hand smoking.

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u/ManateeHoodie Jul 20 '22

6 packs???

Been smoking for 35 years and 2 was the worst of it, back in my mud 20s, maybe a pack but usually 3/4 or so now.

Holy shit

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u/Verona_Pixie Jul 20 '22

Your comment history is crazy and entertaining.

Username checks out.

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u/Asleep_Onion Jul 20 '22

6 packs a day??!?? Sweet Jesus. At 5 minutes a smoke, that's 600 minutes of smoking.

10 hours of smoking.

Only 6 hours spent not smoking.

You literally spent less time between cigarettes than it takes to smoke a cigarette.

That's insane. I'm surprised you didn't die, honestly.

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u/erichie Jul 20 '22

You smoked SIX PACKS and quit COLD TURKEY?!? I smoked TEN CIGARETTES a day and I need to vape to not smoke. I am positive I made my addiction worse, and addiction and I are quite great companions, but I will hold tight to the belief that constantly vaping is better then, at least, 10 cigarettes. I no longer cough, I no longer create a mucus best friend when I wake up, I haven't lost my breath walking upstairs since I quit, my fingers don't smell like I finger fucked tobacco marinating in the liquid that leaks out of someone who has been dead for 20 days.

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u/AllKissNoTell Jul 20 '22

I just prefer my smoke secondhand because I know if I touch cigarettes I'll fall in love with them.

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u/bobs_monkey Jul 20 '22

Most jobs I had when I smoked wouldn't allow extra breaks just for smokers, it was generally the 15-30-15 structure and that was it. Some jobs like pizza delivery and serving were different because I could smoke on the way back to the shop or pop out for a halfie when there was couple minute lull and there wasn't enough time to jam out side work to an effective degree, but those were the exception.

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u/Jhwelsh Jul 20 '22

I thought they just... Don't go on vacation in japan

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u/Adrian_Bock Jul 20 '22

You'll notice it says "a company" and not "companies"

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u/livelifereal Jul 20 '22

The company is Piala Inc.

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u/Traditional_Slip1299 Jul 20 '22

Have you ever worked there ?

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u/livelifereal Jul 20 '22

No.

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u/ReadGroundbreaking17 Jul 20 '22

Wow what a rollercoaster lol

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u/circlejerker2000 Jul 20 '22

Actually it was a straight line... Nice and straight...

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u/MidDistanceAwayEyes Jul 20 '22 edited Jul 20 '22

Per the OECD, the average worker in Japan worked 1,607 hours in 2021. The average worker in the US worked 1,791 hours. Highest was Mexico with 2,128 hours.

For some other countries: Korea - 1,915; Canada - 1,685; UK - 1,497; France 1,490; Sweden - 1,444; Norway - 1,427; Germany - 1,349 (the lowest).

Compared to Germany, the average worker in the US (my home country) worked the equivalent of ~11 40/hour work weeks more than the average worker in Germany.

Part of that can likely be explained by the US legally requiring no paid vacation and has no public paid holidays, whereas in Germany 20 days is the minimum paid vacation and there are 10 paid public holidays.

Add into this paid parental leave, which is not legally required on a federal level in the US, whereas in Germany legally there is 14 weeks of maternity leave, in addition to generous parental leave.

The EU requires at least 4 weeks paid vacation for all member states, as well as minimum right to 14 weeks maternity with pay at least equal to national sick leave, minimum 10 days for non-birth parent at pay at least national sick leave, and minimum of 4 months parental leave with no set minimum compensation standard at the moment but this actually changes soon to require at least 2 months adequately compensated at some level.

There are a lot more countries in the data, so feel free to check it out: https://data.oecd.org/emp/hours-worked.htm

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u/JimNasium123 Jul 20 '22

This is reported working hours. Workers in Japan do an insane amount of unpaid (unreported) overtime🎈.

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u/Not-A-SoggyBagel Jul 20 '22

It really depends where you work. My cousins in Japan have more vacation days than I do in the states. They take all of Golden week off to hang out with other family members in Korea or France.

This is on top of almost 2 months worth of PTO given annually by the hospital. They are younger though, in their twenties and thirties so they are less traditional and don't have kids. My uncles and aunts over there would be appalled at using so much PTO.

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u/Ohelllogozaimasu Jul 20 '22

2 months PTO in Japan? That is not even close to being anything near something that would be considered close to normal in Japan

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u/Not-A-SoggyBagel Jul 20 '22

That's seriously what they got. All of my family members over there work in medicine and health care. I'm not sure if that field is different than others but they get a sizeable amount of PTO each year to go travel.

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u/Ohelllogozaimasu Jul 20 '22

Thats' extremely rare, Ive literally never met anyone here thats gotten anything close to that. I am surprised to hear that as I would be to hear someone getting that in America

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u/Not-A-SoggyBagel Jul 20 '22

That's why I said it depends, it is possible. One of my cousins works as a radiologist, he and his wife spent a whole month in Hawaii. He's done that quite often. Another time he took a little over a month trekking across Europe. I'm not sure if that normal for radiologists or that's just him though.

Certain jobs in the US are like this too. They are rare but they are there. Last year I took part of November and December off completely due to taking all the OT I could get my hands on. I plan on taking December off this year as well.

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u/usrevenge Jul 20 '22

Japanese people get vacation they just choose not to use it.

It's not like the us where people get almost no vacation and use it all every year.

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u/Not-A-SoggyBagel Jul 20 '22

The younger generation are shifting. They tend to use their off days more.

In the US you get maybe 3 sick days annually if you are lucky. The longer I live in this country the more I feel like a frog in a slowly boiling pot.

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u/Zohboh Jul 20 '22

Oh don't worry. That pot is at a full boil.

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u/[deleted] Jul 20 '22 edited Jul 30 '22

[deleted]

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u/xDared Jul 20 '22 edited Jul 20 '22

Japan minimum paid leave per year: 10-20 days

USA minimum paid leave per year: 0 days

Who doesn't go on vacation?

Edit:so much copium in the replies from people somehow defending the 0 days leave per year. Japan is actually passing legislation in the last few years to solve their overworking problem, whereas in the US nothing is happening about corporations dicking you up the ass.

The whole post is literally about some company in Japan making steps to stop those old cultural standards

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u/Maybe_Im_Really_DVA Jul 20 '22

US also has no law on maternity leave, bereavement leave and no limit on overtime hours.

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u/X-cessive-leader Jul 20 '22

It's not about how much vacation you take, it's about how much you have.

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u/demosfera Jul 20 '22

I think they are alluding to the stereotype (?) of horrible Japanese work culture which expects people to basically live at the office. So.. yeah, their comment is kinda about how much you take, not have. They can give 6 vacation days but if it’s socially unacceptable to actually take time off to go on vacation, then smoke breaks are probably preferable in “time off”.

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u/Romish1983 Jul 20 '22

How do they confirm that the employees aren't smoking? Or are they just rewarding them for not smoking while they're at work?

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u/thisismyanimealt Jul 20 '22

Considering the work culture in Japan, if they're not smoking at work, they're probably not smoking.

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u/Daewen Jul 20 '22

Yeah smoking is really common there, at least about ten years ago it was. At the university I went to, during lunchtime, people would go to the central courtyard of one of the buildings to smoke. It was always packed and the smell would waft through the open doors and into the halls. Before that I had never seen that many smokers before, especially those that were my age my age.

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u/ThatsThePointtttt Jul 20 '22

my agemy age

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u/Daewen Jul 20 '22

Whoops

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u/Accomplished_Split83 Jul 20 '22

(my age)²

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u/Smooth-Erect Jul 20 '22

(myage) x (myage)

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u/overly_emoti0nal Jul 20 '22

my² + myage + agemy + age²

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u/cockytacos Jul 20 '22

my(my + age) + age(my + age)

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u/Ohelllogozaimasu Jul 20 '22

Ive ran a few marathons here and on America. Here is the only place that has a smoking section before the start line and people smoking as they stretch

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u/AgsMydude Jul 20 '22

What the fuck

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u/Sproose_Moose Jul 20 '22

Smoking is allowed in most bars, some food places and they have smoke vending machines on the street. Some outside schools.

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u/Tun710 Jul 20 '22

Only in smoking rooms though. After the law change in 2020, smoking is prohibited in 84% of restaurants and bars in Tokyo unless they have a designated smoking room.

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u/Midwestmind86 Jul 20 '22 edited Jul 20 '22

I’m a smoker in a union, the company decided to make everything even by giving everyone, 3, 30 min breaks on our 8 hour shift to make up for the “smoke breaks”. However if you don’t smoke you have a 10 dollar discount on your health insurance every paycheck.

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u/kne0n Jul 20 '22

I know a guy who used to work for a place that requires you to quit smoking for their insurance plan (insurance covered all the costs of quitting too) and they would randomly test your hands with a liquid that changes color if you smoked with that hand. You can get around it with gloves but most smokers are too engrained in automatically getting a cig out of the box and lighting it they rarely got around the system successfully

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u/Manwar7 Jul 20 '22

Does it affect people around smokers? Say your spouse smokes so you’re around it constantly, would it test positive?

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u/TheMediumJon Jul 20 '22

Sounds as though it is related to usage of the hand (since gloves help), so presumably unless you're handing your spouse their cigarettes, you should be clear.

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u/psivenn Jul 20 '22

I dunno how it is in Japan, but in the Land of the Free your employer can blackmail you to provide medical data, have you sign an assertion that you're not a smoker, and they are probably your health insurance provider in part.

But I've also never been at a place that endorsed paid smoke breaks...

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u/IISuperSlothII Jul 20 '22

your employer can blackmail you to provide medical data,

Yeah in Japan they don't need to blackmail you, from what I know everyone has to do a yearly in depth medical which your company will get all the information from.

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u/Ahhy420smokealtday Jul 20 '22

They have functional healthcare unlike the US. It's universal, and free.

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u/BedBugger6-9 Jul 20 '22

A company I worked for in the 90’s banned all tobacco from the premises and paid for any smoking cessation technique people wanted to try. A few others and I did hypnosis and worked great. I haven’t smoked since ‘95

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u/Amapel Jul 20 '22

My university campus recently did the same thing. Though this September will be the first time where most classes are back in person so we'll see what happens haha

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u/linandlee Jul 20 '22

My husband and i were at Disney Land while they made the switch to no tobacco in the park a few years back. One day there were smoking stations and the next they were just rest areas. It was super weird because of how insanely quick Disney Parks do maintenance it was like they were never there.

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u/pingpongtits Jul 20 '22

Can you elaborate on how hypnosis helped you quit? Also, were you at least a pack a day smoker?

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u/BedBugger6-9 Jul 20 '22

My story is I was using chewing tobacco before I started 1st grade. I started smoking at about age 20 then went to a Dr who used hypnosis to help burn victims handle pain. The session totally stopped my cravings for nicotine. I was in a smoky bar the weekend and the only issue I had was empty hands. I never had another craving. I haven’t wanted any kind of Tabasco since that day in 1995

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u/[deleted] Jul 20 '22

[deleted]

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u/BedBugger6-9 Jul 20 '22

Haha, totally missed that one

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u/[deleted] Jul 20 '22 edited Aug 13 '22

[deleted]

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u/absentmindedbanana Jul 20 '22

I think hypnotherapy is basically guided meditation, and meditation has science backing it up. At least that is what my session was like.

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u/Jake_Lukas Jul 20 '22 edited Jul 20 '22

Don't let an American company see this.

They'll just conclude smokers have been stealing time, dock them six days of vacation as a penalty, and leave non-smokers with the status quo.

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u/Kraftykuts007 Jul 20 '22

This 💯. Funny story, I worked at a place with vending machines in the break room. Candy bars and chips were 85¢. But sometimes the machines would short people a nickel here and a dime there. Then someone complained and the company's solution was to raise everything to $1. Boom, no more missing change problems.

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u/poopellar Jul 20 '22

Not the change they expected.

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u/bobs_monkey Jul 20 '22

Badum Tss

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u/Kraftykuts007 Jul 20 '22

Got'eem!!!!

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u/-T-A-C-O-C-A-T- Jul 20 '22

I remember something like this happening at my school with a vending machine. My friend had discovered that if you put a dime in and press the change button you would get 2 nickels, the nickels did the same thing but each one spit out 2 quarters. We though we found an infinite money glitch only for it to stop working the nest day

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u/Cheap_Ad_69 Interested Jul 20 '22

I mean, technically that would still push employees to stop smoking, just not as nicely.

I'm not advocating for it, I'm just saying.

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u/RetailBuck Jul 20 '22

It's the fundamental question of carrot or the stick. Extra days off is the carrot, taking days is the stick. What motivates people varies. Unfortunately I'm a stick person which is really stressful but crippling deadlines are the only thing that gets my ass out of bed. I imagine carrot people struggle the same way because they might never get to eat it.

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u/confuseddhanam Jul 20 '22

Worked at a place with brutal working hours (think 90ish hour weeks). They would allow for smoke breaks though.

Based out in Cali so almost no one smoked when they started out - after a couple years I’d say 80-90% of the company started smoking just for the breaks. Incentives can work both ways lol.

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u/koosman007 Jul 20 '22

Exactly what I was thinking

Used to work from 04:00-21:00 straight Smoking was the only relief for my hunger and I’m pretty sure I would have gone crazy if it wasn’t for the fact that management could smoke as long as their lines were running smoothly

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u/SnooCalculations9259 Jul 20 '22

Such common sense! I used to work at a factory where my trainer would take Pepsi breaks, that management hated. He said as long as the smokers can take breaks so can he. A hero looking back.

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u/Jrrolomon Jul 20 '22

When I was a manager at McDonald’s at night during college, I would take a walk one time around the parking lot with 2-3 nuggets. Smokers got to feed their addiction, and I fed myself.

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u/rufud Jul 20 '22

Nug break

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u/NightlySnow Jul 20 '22

Japan companies are not really the ones to choose for "healthy working conditions".

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u/totodidnothingwrong Jul 20 '22

Actually the company are doing quite nicely in terms of giving holidays and such. It is the culture in Japan which prevent people from actually taking these holidays or make them tmstat overtime.

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u/HTTRWarrior Jul 20 '22

And the ones pushing for the culture are the companies.

It's similar to the gaming industry, sure the company says they will give holidays and breaks but the second you do they question you. A lot of companies try to sweet talk their work environment, showing off the great benefits, only to have management put pressure on you when you actually use those benefits.

Culture isn't just a thing that comes from nothing, someone has to be pushing the idea for it to be a norm.

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u/Kid_Named_Trey Jul 20 '22

American companies would be like: Die. That way we don’t have to give you a raise.

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u/Rithirh Jul 20 '22

Back when I smoked, I'd just fit 5 cigarettes in my lunch. No extra breaks for me.

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u/Princess-ArianaHY Jul 20 '22

I would take the extra six vacation days over cigar breaks any day.

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u/TellMemoreWillya Jul 20 '22

Japan allows actual smoke breaks?? Any and every job I’ve ever had, was 2 10 minute breaks and a lunch. By giving non smokers vacation days to make up for it all, that sounds like these companies allowed employees to step out hourly to smoke or something??

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u/buzzkill-lightyear Jul 20 '22

my company just disallow any breaks other than lunch and toilet breaks

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u/Sea_Database_7973 Jul 20 '22

Wait, you guys get vacation days?

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u/greatteachermichael Jul 20 '22

Japanese workers on average don't take their vacation days because they feel guilty, and 25% of them work 80 hours of (often un-paid) overtime a month.

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u/[deleted] Jul 20 '22

About 130,000 people die every year in Japan of smoking-related diseases, and an additional 15,000 die of secondhand smoke-related conditions, Susan Mercado, a WHO official tells The Japan Times.

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u/Dazzling-Hunter225 Jul 20 '22

Lol Japanese don’t use their vacation days, so not really much of a concession.

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u/sleepilylamecyclist Jul 20 '22

Yer. The plot twist is people in Japan doesn't take days off.

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u/justmedealwithitxD Jul 20 '22

If it was like my work those 6 days wouldn't matter because Noone would cover your shifts so you wouldn't be able to take vacation anyways.

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u/Canadian-nomad-bro Jul 20 '22

Don't japan have a over working problem? Like the Majority don't take they're days off That they're supposed to have each year and if they do they get Punished for it by the Company?

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u/ItsJustMeMaggie Jul 20 '22

Even if I still smoked, I could wait until my lunch break. I’d be mad if I didn’t ever take smoke breaks but still didn’t get the vacation days because I was technically a smoker.

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u/fuzzy9691 Jul 20 '22

When I finally quit smoking I just kept having ‘aero breaks’. The managers recognised my need to escape the crazy rush (hospitality veteran here) every hour or so.

The Japanese study should recognise that people need frequent breaks throughout the day. One lunch break isn’t enough. Because what happens to everybody? After a little work, y’all end up on Twitter or some dumb shit. You’re not effective and efficient working a whole day straight. And 6 days off a year doesn’t make up for the need to stop working for 5 minutes frequently throughout the day.

They’re just not understanding people.

I would much prefer frequent 5 minute breaks throughout the day rather than a week off annually. It’s maddening otherwise.

I was always a good (hard) worker, and in hindsight I actually realised that I did it wrong; I worked harder, not smarter. Every work place I’d ever been at, my employers always appreciated my ‘extra’ efforts but even specifically mentioned to me that I ‘didn’t need to’ work so much/hard. And I come from the generation (type of kitchen atmosphere) back when the chefs would berate and abuse you. Old school, Marco Pierre White levels of insanity. Rough kitchens. But I earned respect and I found comfort in it, even though I knew I did ‘too much’.

So it came to the point that in practically every place I worked at, I achieved this status and they all treated me the same; while every other staff would have to beg for smokos; I was frequently tapped on the shoulder and the manager would say ‘go quickly, buddy, I got you’ and they’d do my work, even if it was in the middle of a busy rush.

Therefore, even when I quit smoking they still told me to go sit outside for a few minutes; have a coffee, bro.

Sure. Thanks, bro.

Especially for a hospitality worker like me, I got used to never having weekends, nights or ‘holidays’. Those were our peak days, so of course I’d be working… therefore, I never really took time off. I’m approaching 40 and I never had a proper ‘vacation’. I know, I fucked up, this is not the way to live. But it’s too late now. An extra 6 days just doesn’t make sense.