A Fun Way to Quit Smoking
Isn’t this fun, or isn’t it?
Let’s hear it from a lady called Sarah in a video The Switch. The title reminded me of The Great Switcheroo in Roald Dahl’s Tales of the Unexpected—a collection of rather sinister stories for adults. The video, however, deals with something much more prosaic: a way of continuing nicotine addiction by using e-cigarettes instead of smoking. It’s produced by an organisation calling itself New Nicotine Alliance. Surprisingly, this is a UK Registered Charity whose main aim seems to be to promote the use of e-cigarettes under the guise of protecting public health.
[Vaping] is actually a perfect replacement for smoking…I could see something coming out of my mouth…it’s actually better than smoking, it tastes better…I was vaping juicy peach…it’s not just bananas or just blueberry, it’s like a whole pudding with custard…you couldn’t actually pay me to eat rhubarb but this is one of my favourite flavours…with vaping I don’t have that same sense of anxiousness and fear about not having it, it’s not a major panic if I leave the house without it…vaping’s fun and it’s meant to be fun and you can enjoy it…
Why do you need a replacement for smoking? And why did Sarah suffer from a sense of axiousness and fear—even major panic—if she didn’t have cigarettes to hand?
Gentle reader, let me confess that on occasions I enjoy eating pudding with custard, but the only thing I would ever want to suck into my lungs is clean air. Yet it seems Sarah inhales her pudding-flavoured aerosol repeatedly throughout the day, every day, and will continue to do so for years. And this, she finds, is fun. Incidentally, how is the flavour supposed to tickle your taste buds its way down to the deepest recesses of your lungs?
Or is the experience of nicotine poisoning your brain similar to the celestial wonders of hashish, beautifully described by Alexandre Dumas in his thrilling story, The Count of Monte Cristo? This is the effect it had on one of his characters, Franz:
His body seemed to acquire an airy lightness, his perception brightened in a remarkable manner, his senses seemed to redouble their power, the horizon continued to expand…a blue, transparent, unbounded horizon, with all the blue of the ocean, all the spangles of the sun, all the perfumes of the summer breeze; then in the midst of the songs of his sailors—songs so clear and sonorous, that they would have made a divine harmony had their notes been taken down.
If we are to believe our good Sarah, however, vapers vape for fun.
Text © Gabriel Symonds