H/T Johnny H for this Daily Mash ‘ad’:
It’s very amusing, but it may also be prescient.
All my life I’ve been having people tell me, usually with a smug look on their faces, that they’ve given up smoking. But a time may be coming when the same people will tell me, with exactly the same smug look on their faces, that they’ve started smoking again.
It occurs to me that there is tremendous scope for courses along these lines.
One might say that a Secondhand Smoke Desensitisation course is badly needed. How might one be conducted? Well, on Day One, participants would be sat in a large hall, and the course lecturer would arrive on stage, and after a few preliminary remarks, would light a cigarette. If some participants should panic, there would be large swing doors for them to escape out into open air, where they could breathe auto exhaust instead. On Day Two, the lecturer would make his/her preliminary remarks while smoking a cigarette, and then invite questions while smoking a second cigarette. Matters would proceed in this manner throughout the 2-week course, with numerous assistants joining the principal lecturer in smoking cigarettes, pipes, and cigars, so that by the end of the course, there’d be a nice blue haze in the room.
Throughout the course, participants would have to fill in detailed questionnaires, charting their progress, that asked whether they had developed cancer or heart disease during the course, or washed their hair more often than usual, or their lungs had turned black.
Some courses would be enlivened by the appearance of the infamous Dr Leg-iron as a guest lecturer, and he would ask people to feel inside their mouths for lumps, and explain that these were caused by seeing thirdhand smoke in movies, and were invariably fatal. There would usually be a terror-stricken mass exodus from Dr Leg-iron’s lectures.
In the final lecture, the hall would be turned into a cinema, and Humphrey Bogart’s Casablanca projected onto the wall through the blue haze, re-creating the authentic Ye Olde Smoky Cinema experience, complete with torch-wielding usherettes selling ice cream and popcorn from trays.
In an adjoining shop, cigarettes, pipes, cigars, and tobacco would be on sale, along with wine, beer, and spirits, and full cream milk and butter, sugar, lard, salt, chocolate, pizza, hamburgers, bacon, sausages, and an enormous range of icing sugar-coated cream cakes made with real cream (these also in handy bite sizes for the kiddies) .
There would be accompanying courses showing people how the make a traditional “Full Heart Attack” breakfast of bacon, fried eggs, fried sausages, fried black pudding, fried bread, fried tomatoes, and fried mushrooms. They’d be taught how to perfect the art of getting little pools of hot fat on the fried egg whites, and a burnt fringe round the edge of them. They’d also be shown how to dunk slabs of white bread in hot dripping to wash down with mugs of boiling hot sweet milky tea. They’d also be taught how to smoke both during and in between courses, while reading a newspaper, and with their feet up on an adjoining chair. And they’d be taught how to not do the washing-up afterwards, but just leave it in the sink until tomorrow.
In fact, you could probably construct a complete university with all the many different courses needed to undo the damage done by the past 30 or 40 years of concerted scaremongering about absolutely everything. Science courses would explain how CO2 was beneficial, and was actually needed by plants to grow. And how we are, right now, living in a brief 10 thousand year long ‘global warming’ episode between 100,000 year ice ages, and should be damn glad of it. Mathematics courses would either teach people how to do statistics properly, or advise them never to use it at all.
Political courses would be about how it’s a darn good thing to live in a country which is full of people who can speak the same language as you do, and what’s more, is run by people who can speak the same language too, and whom you elected – rather than by a remote palatial central government populated by politicians who have all elected each other, and who pay no taxes on their enormous salaries, and who are immune from prosecution, in somewhere like, say, Brussels.
There’d be a good living to be made from it, much like the living made by the Tobacco Control Industry in its heyday, but simply undoing everything they have done. And since some people will probably never lose their fear of SHS or CO2 or cream cakes or bacon, you could always count on them coming back to take the courses again and again.