New Lamps for Old

August 31, 2016 OPINION/NEWS

AFP photo

 

By

Hazel Speed

Having grown up in an era where different brands and packets of cigarettes were as many and varied as two football teams and their reserve players, and promoted on TV and all forms of advertising available then, it is interesting to see the changes in stance over the years to this present time.

There were so many shapes, colours and designs of packets and various brands were even associated with particular social/class groups.  Then of course there were those who rolled their own cigarettes from tins of tobacco onto prepared paper cuttings. I was amazed to see someone purchasing a tin the other day. But then I am stunned to see a particular toilet paper is still being sold! Those of a certain age group know the one I mean and the jokey nick names derived therefrom.

Regarding cigarette packets, there even used to be a children’s game called ‘flick’ where empty packets which were somehow acquired, were put against a kerb or base of a wall, then from a few yards back, each competitor would skim flick an empty cover in the direction of the line of pack covers which were squashed flat ready for the game.

If a child hit a cigarette pack cover with a skim so it fell over, then it became theirs to keep.

The movies, whether American or English, invariably depicted the ‘star’ smoking. Probably this was contemporary with men and women in the Military Services also smoking, thereby one group perpetuating the other to feature smoking as being the cool thing to do in days long gone.

We are told Sir Walter Raleigh introduced the tobacco plant following one of his historic voyages overseas in Elizabeth I time. There is even a funny interview presented by an American comedian ‘as if’ Sir Walter is telling people how to use this tobacco plant then.

But to the serious matter. Health. For many years now society realises smoking is not healthy and people are encouraged to take themselves off it. Many schools’ employees have to leave the school premises and access location leading to the school if they want to take their breaks outside so they can have a smoke in some unfortunate street or outside a person’s house, propping up the corner like old style Lily Savages, which annoys a lot of people who have to inhale secondary smoke in their street, e.g. If it is not to be done near the school why should it be done close to the homes of people.

E-cigarettes are now sold as a more healthier and safer alternative. You must make your own mind up and perhaps the link to what the NHS has to say may be edifying in one respect.

I was in a large store of a well known chain of supemarkets the other day and whilst waiting to be served I noticed that as by Law, the cigarettes had to be hidden by sliding doors until puchase is requested, yet freely on display were countless e-cigarettes.

I asked the assistant (off the record) what is the difference, as rather than stop people smoking, they are just being encouraged to take up another habit to purchase an item that in essence is really facilitating the need to suck an e-cigarette like a dummy. She thought the same thing. So now smoking e-cigarettes is cool apparently.

What many think is totally ridiculous are the incongruous environments where e-cigarettes are sold, i.e. Street market, computer shops!

New lamps for old or new crutch for old, time will tell irrespective of any potential health indicators.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hazel Speed

Photo (c) Hazel Speed – used by kind permision to Tuck Magazine

Hazel Speed is a Philosopher, Writer, and Artist with various creative projects at differing states of development. Her flaship project is an animation which has produced a film short: www.thepinkprofessor.com.

Art sites: www.candystoreart.comwww.terrificart.comwww.artbadges.co.uk

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