Pridemore kicks bad habit (needs new nickname)

In 1999, newly elected Clark County Commissioner Craig Pridemore made a New Year’s resolution to quit smoking, a habit he picked up at his University of Washington frat house.

Here’s a pic from ’99


That pledge to quit did not stick. A reporter who needed a quote or ask a question after a meeting could count on finding Pridemore outside, taking a smoke break.

Pridemore, now known as Sen. Pridemore, D-Vancouver, didn’t give up on quitting. He’s gone more than four years without buying a pack of cigarettes.

He turned 50 on Sunday.

“1,683 days since “quitting,” not that I’m actually still counting,” Pridemore wrote in an e-mail. “I had to update the count for my birthday so I happen to know. In the interest of full disclosure, I have smoked five cigarettes during that time but haven’t felt the urge to buy a pack so I think I can safely claim to have kicked the addiction.”

He added three of those five cigarettes were smoked in one night, with a friend who smokes. The other two were smoked during his brief time as a Congressional candidate last year (Pridemore backed out early and was not on the ballot.)

Good for you, Senator.

And now we promise to break a bad habit of our own.

Several years ago, a reporter spotted you taking a smoke break. It looked like you were having a rough day. You were slouchy and rumpled. You were wearing sunglasses that gave off the impression that you just wanted to be left alone. (Hey, we all have those days.)

But it did earn you the nickname, among a few of us in the newsroom, of “Steve Dallas,” from the “Bloom County” cartoon.

You know, this guy


So congratulations on breaking your bad habit. We promise to break ours.

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