Tuesday 5 March 2013

Twitching, Giggling, and Quitting Smoking


Yesterday I got wrapped up in a conversation with MJ on the phone while I was running errands and I didn't want to cut her off, so I put my earphone thingy in my ear. It just looked like one earbud, and the cord was hidden inside my scarf and jacket, so it's not a surprise that people kept thinking I was talking to myself or to them. But after the second or third store I'd run into, the stupid earbud started shorting out, sending mini electrical shocks into my ear. Every time I would shift or move it would shock me again. This meant that I was constantly twitching and wincing like I had some sort of terrible tic. In line at Walmart, MJ was regaling me with a particularly funny story, so I was just listening and laughing on and off, but every time I laughed I'd get another shock. The man ahead of me kept looking over his shoulder with a worried expression. But I say, it's Walmart. How are you surprised by a twitching, giggling lunatic here?


A current typical smoking warning on a pack of Canadian smokes
In Canada, our cigarette packs have warnings on the outside, and on the inside. The outside of the packs portray a series of grotesque and frightening images showing eye surgeries, tumours, and blackened gums. These are clearly meant to somehow frighten you out of buying the pack, I suppose, except that in Canada, you also aren't allowed to put your cigarettes on display in a store; so by the time you see the warning label, you've already bought the damn things and now you're stuck staring at these horrible photos.

When you open up your pack, there's another little health-related warning label, but these ones are just text, and they say things like, "Never quit quitting!" It's almost as if Health Canada is saying, "Stop smoking, you moron!" on the outside, and then, "Well, better luck next time..." on the inside.

I think the real problem here is that the outside labels are actually too horrific to be effective anymore. They're desensitizing, like watching the SAW movies back-to-back: you know it's gross but your brain stops processing that this is supposed to be realistic. I think, if Health Canada really wants to be effective, they need to try a new strategy:

One just for teens
Just a couple ideas I had. Got more? Email me at jordandangerwrites (at) gmail.com with yours.

1 comment:

Might I suggest you copy/paste your comment before you hit 'submit', just in case the internet gremlins eat your first attempt? :)

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...