The smoking ban approaches with terrifying speed. I fear that all my righteous indignation, my libertarian instinct, is merely the frightened whimper of an addict whose last crutch is being kicked away by the men in grey suits. When I drank — and I drank a lot — I couldn’t imagine a life for myself in which I wasn’t drinking. When I eventually stopped, nearly four years ago, the reality of life without debts to bars, being slapped by women I was sure I’d never met, and a perpetual hangover was so pleasant that I wondered why I hadn’t stopped sooner. I want to stop smoking so should be grateful to a government that is making a decision for me. I can’t, however, imagine myself not smoking. If I didn’t smoke, what would I do? Jog? Finger rosary beads nervously at parties? Chew gum after dinner and after sex? I feel about July the way Tony Blair must feel about May.