We’ve all heard the cliche “I only read it for the articles” about Playboy Magazine. Well, when I was a kid in the 80’s, I actually looked at those magazines mostly for the cigarette ads, which I sometimes would cut out and collect because I liked the aesthetic. Somewhere I still have them, neatly preserved in photo albums in a box alongside my Garbage Pail Kids collection. I mostly liked the Joe Camel advertisements but also really was into ads from other brands like “Vantage” or “Now” for some reason. I just associated them with airports and airline magazines and traveling (whenever I think of a 1980s airport I picture Newport ads being on the walls of the terminal.) My mom smoked Carltons, but my dad always thought smoking was stupid and found it mildly annoying when people lit up around him (my parents divorced when I was about 3 for unrelated reasons.)
I smoked briefly staring in about the 8th grade but by junior year in high school I was over it. This was over 20 years ago, and today I find myself wondering why people still smoke cigarettes. There’s really no reason anyone should still be smoking in the current year (unless they got hooked many years ago and just can’t quit.) I’m not arguing that it should be banned or anything, but merely that it seems pointless. I decided to do a brief anti-smoking “public service announcement” in the video below.