Often seen at college campuses and other places with strict policies toward smoking, these are a byproduct of the growing anti-smoking trend. By controlling where smokers can go to have their cigarettes, the smoke-free movement has created a social group based around smoking. These groups often take the form of a circle as more arrive, and are united at very least by the fact that those present smoke. In the time it takes to finish a cigarette, members can quickly discover goals, views, etc that they have in common with others. This phenomenon also adds to the allure of cigarettes, by bringing people who do not smoke into smoking areas for the sake of good conversation, and can often lead to them becoming smokers as well. This decision to become a full-fledged member of the smoker's circle is often rationalized by stating the health detriments of how much second-hand smoke is already being inhaled without the psychological benefit of nicotine. Sometimes these members are actually social smokers, smoking exclusively at the smoker's circle or other times when they are surrounded by smokers, using the same rationalization as previously stated.
Because of the smoker's circle, "smoke-friending" is becoming more and more viable. Upon arrival in an unfamiliar area, smokers are able to meet people they may have otherwise not given a moment's attention. This also attracts new smokers, as some join in an effort to gain companionship when other methods are not as effective as planned.
Aaron: "Hey Bruce, where's Jason? Wasn't he just with you?"
Bruce: "Yeah, he was, but you can't smoke in here, so he's out front at the smoker's circle."
Aaron: "Oh man, I hope they don't get talking about the economy out there, we won't see him until half-a-pack from now!"
John, to roommate: "Man, I thought we'd meet more people by now, I mean we've been here a week, had our door open, and so far the only people we seem to know are the RA and that kid next door who drops the f-bomb
14 times whenever he dies in MW2
Roommate: Dude, I have an idea- let's run to the gas station and buy a pack of cigarettes
. There's a smoker's circle out at the entrance, I bet we can smoke-friend some people!"