Flaming Cancer Sticks

So. I'm talking with the roommates today and somehow we got onto the subject of nicotine addiction. Which is understandable - easy to get hooked on the stuff. Not so easy to break the habit. But that doesn't explain the other half of the equation.

What the hell were people thinking when they decided to grab some of those tobacco leaves, chop them down, dry them out, shred/cut them up, roll it into a piece of paper, light it, and then suck the smoke into their lungs? This isn't something someone does by accident. Someone had to think this up. It goes against every survival instinct you have as a human being to suck flaming hot smoke into your lungs like that. I'd ask what people were smoking back then, but, well, they weren't yet. Maybe someone out there can tell me, because I just don't get it.

Yes, I know. When randomness strikes, it strikes hard and fast. :)
"It is pointless to resist, my son." -- Darth Vader
"Resistance is futile." -- The Borg
"Mother's coming for me in the dragon ships. I don't like these itchy clothes, but I have to wear them or it frightens the fish." -- Thurindil

Well. I guess that's that then.

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Posted on Jan 7, 2008 10:10 pm by Samson in: | 4 comment(s) [Closed]
Humans started smoking tobacco LONG before the Europeans came to America. The two main uses were in primitive pipes or as leaves rolled into something similar to cigars. With both of these cases little or not smoke is inhaled into the lungs. The most common seen usage is the piece pipe in old Cowboy'n'Indian movies. It wasn't until said cowboys (and others) wanted to have something they could more easily carry around and quickly smoke that cigarettes became popular. Then the tobacco companies saw how people would buy massive amounts of cigarettes so the marketing machines started rolling.

I can say that if one were to smoke tobacco, the least dangerous option would be good cigars. Cigarettes are the worst (added chemicals, higher burn rate, inhaled deeply) while pips are a little better (much thicker tobacco cut, less added chemicals, additional flavors, slightly inhaled). Cigars, being whole leafs rolled into a cylinder with little or no added flavoring or chemicals, burn slowest and (unless you are completely insane) not inhaled more than second hand cigar smoke by the smoker.

Now, I'm not advocating smoking here. Just trying to answer your inquery.

You know, Dragona's trying to get me to quit smoking. I started back in June of 1980, and have averaged about a pack a day for almost that entire time, but I haven't had one since this past Turkey Day.. and your picture up there, not to mention post, is enough to really make me want one. *sigh*

See, that's exactly the kind of thing I was getting at when I posted this Conner. Somewhere back in the annals of history, someone got the idea that they really wanted one too. Joe's history of the use of tobacco is interesting but ultimately fails to answer my half serious question of why someone thought that was a good idea to begin with. Even if it wasn't originally inhaled.

Well, the only answer I can even try to give to your actual question is: Who knows! :D
I mean, that's kind of like asking what moron had the bright idea to drink a bottle of automobile engine cleaner in the first place, so that they'd realize it could be later marketed as Coca Cola? ;)

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