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I was fresh out of college applying for a job, and I arrived 15 minutes ahead of schedule. To calm my nerves, I decided to have a cigarette in the designated smoking area outside the building. My corporate attire blended in smoothly with the employees on their cigarette break there.

Then I realized, I forgot my yosi, so I asked a girl smoking alone if I could bum a stick. She looked surprised, but agreed to give me one anyway. The nicotine quickly helped me forget about the awkwardness of asking for one. When I eventually went upstairs for my interview, my heart jumped into my throat. The girl I bummed a cigarette from was part of the panel. She didn’t bring up my asking for yosi during the interview, but I bet they talked about me after I finished–kakahiya. I didn’t get the job, by the way.
David G., by email

Illustration Gilbert Daroy
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