DA Hamilton Burger may be the best-known loser of early TV, but his portrayer William Talman's life (content excerpted from the Perry Mason TV show book) was far more interesting. At the height of his fame in 1960, Talman arrested at a nude pot party, and was fired and blacklisted as a result. It took Raymond Burr, the cast, and the fans to eventually get him his job back. At the end of his life, on the verge of dying, he made a powerful anti-smoking PSA (the PSA itself)
I smoked for years. I would quit for a few weeks at a time occasionally, but I always went back. For me, smoking cured everything; it could be anything I needed it to be. I could celebrate, mourn, fume, and daydream. It was proof that I existed: I was interacting with my environment and leaving evidence, all the while putting forth pretty much the least amount of physical effort possible. It was an excuse to sit and look at things. I could sit and stare into the middle distance and think to myself all I wanted because I was still doing something: I was smoking.
Why I Make Terrible Decisions, or, poverty thoughts. "This is what our lives are like, and here are our defense mechanisms, and here is why we think differently." (SLKinja) [more inside]
291 diseases and injuries + 67 risk factors + 1,160 non-fatal complications = 650 million estimates of how we age, sicken, and die
As humans live longer, what ails us isn't necessarily what kills us: five data visualizations of how we age, sicken, and die. Causes of death by age, sex, region, and year. Heat map of leading causes and risks by region. Changes in leading causes and risks between 1990 and 2010. Healthy years lost to disability vs. life expectancy in 1990 and 2010. Uncertainties of causes and risks. From the team for the massive Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation Global Burden of Diseases, Injuries, and Risk Factors Study 2010. [more inside]
From the mid 40s to the mid 50s Coronet Instructional Films were always ready to provide social guidance for teenagers on subjects as diverse as dating, popularity, preparing for being drafted, and shyness, as well as to children on following the law, the value of quietness in school, and appreciating our parents. They also provided education on topics such as the connection between attitudes and health, what kind of people live in America, how to keep a job, supervising women workers, the nature of capitalism, and the plantation System in Southern life. Inside is an annotated collection of all 86 of the complete Coronet films in the Prelinger Archives as well as a few more. Its not like you had work to do or anything right? [more inside]
Cigarettes: The Most Stable International Currency. In China, expensive cigarettes (not to be confused with counterfeits of popular brands) are sometimes used as bribes. Cash can be difficult to handle, or outright illegal, in some places. Since a smoking ban (and subsequent black-market trade in cigarettes) in US prisons, canned mackerel (previously on MetaFilter) has become the exchange medium of choice. [more inside]
Fixation is a prequel to The Company Of Myself (previously). Smoking is a core game mechanic. [more inside]
Fifty years ago, the Royal College of Physicians released a report titled "Smoking and health (1962)", showing the relation between smoking and lung cancer. In 1962, about 70% of men and 40% of women in the UK smoked, and the BBC spoke to a number of them as seen in this archive footage.
Adam Curtis on The legacy of the Colonels Coup - "What is forgotten is that from 1967 to 1974 the Greek people lived under a harsh and violent dictatorship that tortured and murdered thousands of ordinary people. The Colonels also corrupted the society by handing out vast loans to individuals in towns and villages across the country - to buy their loyalty. At the same time the repression and torture bred a powerful resistance that finally burst out in incredible bravery in 1973." [more inside]
Light marijuana use doesn't harm lung function, study found: "Smoking a joint once a week or a bit more apparently doesn't harm the lungs, suggests a 20-year study that bolsters evidence that marijuana doesn't do the kind of damage tobacco does."
Hundreds of old cigar labels. Vintage lighters. Cigar bands from the "Golden Age" of cigar advertising (1890s - 1920s). Japanese Matchbox label & manufacturing. Depression Era Cigarette Packs. Cigarette Holders for the Ladies. The Victorian Gentleman's Smoking Cap (and jacket). The History of the Cigar Store Indians and Side Walk Figure Statues. Let’s not forget the ashtrays [more inside]
Serum hemoglobin is related to endurance running performance. Smoking is known to enhance serum hemoglobin levels ... alcohol may further enhance this beneficial adaptation.A recent paper by Kenneth Myers in the Canadian Medical Association Journal reviews the potential benefits of smoking for endurance atheletes. [more inside]
Belgian photographer Frieke Janssens snapped controversial (and artistic) portraits of children between the ages of four and nine smoking fake cigarettes. The photo shoot in action was recorded and her portfolio can be seen here. (Previously) [more inside]
With the crackdown on smoking and higher cigarette taxes in New York City, people who sell individual cigarettes, also known as loosies, are rapidly gaining new customers.
Fed up with anti-smoker sentiments and taxation of cigarettes, Audrey Silk decided to plant her own tobacco at her home in Brooklyn.
Australia, already a leader in tobacco sales restrictions, is seeking plain packaging for all cigarette packaging, forcing a fight with Big Tobacco. Other governments around the world watch interestedly, as arguments revolve around intellectual property rights and spill-over effects. An astro-turf group has been formed to protest "on behalf of retailers". Meanwhile, the Federal Opposition maintains it's links to the tobacco industry. (previously)
City of New York extends full smoking ban to public parks, beaches, and public concourses like Times Square. (slnyt). A surprisingly metafilteresque flamewar can be observed in the comments of the huffington post re-reportage.
Ever wanted to start smoking a tobacco pipe? Begin by selecting from the many types of pipes available. Next, choose a tobacco type and flavor. Pipe smoking has a long and storied history- many a famous man, woman, or fictional character would not be parted from his or her pipe (link slightly NSFW). Pipes in art. Books about pipes. And of course, there is widely varying opinion on just how healthy pipe smoking isn't.
Ads that would never be allowed today. Van Heusen, yikes.
The FDA has unveiled new graphic warnings for cigarette packages, including for the first time images that might depict dead bodies, cancer patients and diseased lungs. You can see all 36 new images here. (13MB PDF). [more inside]
Every Cigarette Smoked in Mad Men. Well, clearly not every cigarette, but it seems to me the show is one big tobacco ad. Also mentioned in parody. [more inside]
Chantix (aka Champix) is a drug developed to help people quit smoking. It works by binding nicotine receptors in the brain. It has side effects -- nausea, gas, suicidal ideation, and strange dreams. "Strange dreams"? Yep, it's right there in the official side-effects from Pfizer (17.13). Here's a strange dream. Here's another. Here's some more. [more inside]
How to design cigarette cartons to be less convenient in order to discourage smoking? Designed to Annoy: a theoretical look at designing inefficient packaging.
I really have to ask, I don't mean to be rude, but would you gamblers please stop smoking vulture brains?. I mean, I know you think it brings you luck, but you're killing them, you know?
How disgusting can the inside of computer become? See now! Some people smoke near their computers. Some people secrete their chip packets inside their computer boxes. You think you can get away with it until you need someone to find out why your computer is fucked up and then.. Ah hah! Could it be.. you have an alien fetus? Mice? The detritus of your fucked up lifestyle? All living within your box? Feel bad about yourself now!
A French association for non-smokers' rights has launched a new ad campaign [all links potentially NSFW] that visually equates smoking with oral sex, using the tagline: "To smoke is to be a slave to tobacco." The pictures show adolescents, young men and women, and the act looks submissive, even forced. Uproar ensues. The Minister for Families vows to ban the images. Commentators join in. French slang helps explain: "Faire un pipe" and "Fumer le cigare" are both common-enough terms for the act that most people who see the images would get the double-entendre. [more inside]
When we reach these, the bleakest and coldest days of winter, my mind inevitably turns towards the warm days of summer and one of America’s favorite pastimes: Barbeque. [more inside]
The European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology (ESHRE) has published a position statement on the impact of the life style factors obesity, smoking and alcohol consumption on natural and medically assisted reproduction. Rationing health care is a complicated subject easily politicized. ESHRE has published five recommendations. While smoking and alcohol consumption can have a clearly negative impact on the fetus, so can apparently obesity. Is this part of a slippery slope or needed restraints on medical services? [more inside]
"1,000,000 to join, my dad john mellencamp will quit smoking" Of course, country rock crooner John Mellencamp isn't MY dad. Rather, John's youngest son Speck (geez) has issued a challenge to facebook -- if 1M people join this facebook group, John Mellencamp will quit smoking. It's legit, unlike that time when you forwarded an email to all of your friends wanting Bill Gates to give you money.
...the Apple store called and informed me that due to the computer having been used in a house where there was smoking, that has voided the warranty and they refuse to work on the machine, due to "health risks of second hand smoke".
Here's a strange one for the books: Science has taken notice that a really, really LARGE proportion of schizophrenic patients smoke. In fact, Scientific American Mind reports that an average of 85% of schizophrenic patients smoke cigarettes compared to only 20% in the general population. Many schizophrenics also appear to have abnormal thermoregulation, an impaired ability to understand body language, an inability to perceive an optical illusion called "the hollow mask illusion," an impaired ability to produce a brain protein known as the muscarinic M1 receptor, and an abnormally large number of genetic mutations known as CNV's or "copy number variations."
So you've tried to quit smoking, but after having a 30-a-day habit for more than 40 years, it's tough. Really tough. So what's a man to do? Well, one way is to keep cigarettes out of arm's reach. A long way out of arm's reach. Geoff Spice is marooning himself on Sgarabhaigh Island (pron: 'Scaravay') in the Outer Hebrides, an uninhabited islet where there are no people ... no buildings ... and no tobacco shops. [more inside]
Are US tobacco companies conspiring to make tobacco more addictive through additives or aren't they? Ever since the first reports published in 1999, this has been debated off and on for years as the tobacco lobby defended itself against allegations of racketeering and outright lies. Recently they lost the case. But the question of American cigarettes being more addictive than others still remains unsettled.
The House passed H.R. 1256, the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act a few days ago. The bill would put regulation of tobacco under the jurisdiction of the F.D.A. Some are critical of this bill, pointing out that Philip Morris is behind it. But the bill does contain many positive elements. Manufacturers would be required to disclose product ingredients to the F.D.A. and marketing to children would be further restricted. [more inside]
The e-cigarette may be soon be outlawed with an imminent crackdown looming. But are e-cigs really that dangerous?
Research shows that a new trend for pre-teens is posting how-to videos explaining the finer points of crushing up smarties, inhaling the dust, and then puffing out powered sugar.Smarties: America’s favorite candy wafer roll! Of course you can eat them. But did you know kids are smoking them? How to smoke Smarties with the best! What do you do in the face of such unwelcome PR? Perhaps the best option is silence. Learn in 7 easy steps, Better than candy cigarettes. Some of these videos have been around since 2007 so why are they catching on now? This is the American candy, not to be confused with the European chocolate confectionery. (via and via) (related previously)
Despite being a tobacco state, Virginia lawmakers passed a smoking ban today. Their ban covers most restaurants and bars, but permits smoking in private clubs and in establishments that construct separately ventilated enclosed smoking rooms for patrons. You can follow the journey of the bill here.
"For the first time on record, the rate of new cancer cases and the cancer death rate are both falling in America. There appear to be several reasons why this is happening, but perhaps the most important is also the simplest: Over the past several decades, men started smoking less." But is obesity the tobacco of the 21st century? Well, Hollywood has tobacco's back. How to lower smoking rates? Taxing cigarettes is the single-most effective way to lower smoking rates, particularly among youth. Check out the correlation on this map.
If you've quit smoking and you're trying to get through the early withdrawal symptoms without gaining 20 pounds, one coping strategy is to get busy crafting. Sure, you say, you've made naughty figurines out of your cigarette packages in bored moments before, but now if you're going to craft you want to make something that celebrates your fantastic self-discipline and can serve as a worthy memorial to your renounced habit. If that's how you feel, check out these links. [more inside]
Smoke if you got 'em. Today is the Great American Smokeout, a time to reflect on how great people look when smoking, and the terrible things (NSFW) the additives do to you.
A New State of Mind. "New research is linking dopamine to complex social phenomena and changing neuroscience in the process."
It looks like a cigarette. It smokes like a cigarette. But it's actually the e-cigarette, and it might be the future of smoking. [more inside]
Chantix may not be so hot, after all. It appears that the smoking cessation drug varenicline may have significant psychiatric side effects. I have recommended the drug in several AskMe's about smoking and so feel it is important to get the word out that it may not be as benign as originally thought.
Stickk.com allows people to undertake commitment bonds: promises that they will do something (lose weight, quit smoking, etc.) or else forfeit a pre-determined amount of money to a charity. Either the honor system or a referee can be used to decide if the goal is met. The idea is related to Nobel prize-winner Thomas Schelling's concept of strategic precommitment. More here, here, and here.
Not a Cough in a Carload: Images from the Tobacco Industry Campaign to Hide the Hazards of Smoking. [more inside]