smoking benefits, 2/3/95 column

In the 2/3/95 column there is a discussion of whether smoking prevents
Alzheimer’s disease. I just want to mention that smoking causes strokes,
which can result in multi-farct dementia, which is just as bad as
Alzheimer’s, if not worse. I hope people aren’t thinking they’re preventing
dementia by smoking.

You needn’t worry. Neither Cecil nor anybody else implied that the benefits of smoking outweigh the health hazard it poses.

But still, it’s fascinating to see how the cigarette-related research is oriented nowadays. They say ludicrous things like, ‘if the father has smoked one cigarette in the last year, there is an infinitesimal chance that they newborn child will have anemia’. Yeah, and there’s also a chance the one moron sperm I have wins the post-coital derby.

You never hear of people studying the health benefits of smoking, though. I would never have heard of that research on Alzheimer and nicotine if it hadn’t been for Cecil’s column. Just goes to show that even in scientific research, there is such a thing as fads.

“Moron sperm.”

: falling out of my chair
: banging my head on my desk
: laaaaaaaaaughing
: and laaaaaughing
: wiping the tears
: replying simply to say “congrats”

Oh, wait. “Moron sperm.”

: and I’m off into hysterics again…

“I’m not an actor, but I play one on TV.”

I was surprised to see how many times in the Straight Dope that Unca Cece, or more precisely, Slug Signorino’s turkeyfied representation of Cecil, is pictured as smoking. Cecil is shown puffing away on the covers of both Triumph of the Straight Dope and The Straight Dope Tells All. On page 8 of the latter book Cecil is smoking while doing laundry, and on page 95 enjoys a smoke as a gameshow host. Also page 173 of Triumph of the Straight Dope, while working on the mysteries of aluminum foil. Plus page 60 where he’s smoking a cigar. (Another cigar on page 395 of Return of the Straight Dope.) And on page 157 of Return of the Straight Dope Cecil smokes while communing with a giant chicken. You get the idea.

Overall there’s a fair number of smokers in the illustrations. Idle and undocumented speculation: “You know, Joe Camel’s working great with the dumb kids, but the intelligent ones are still resistant. I wonder if there if a cartoon character somewhere out there that appeals to smart kids, that we maybe can make a deal with?”

Hey, Cervaise, you’re quite welcome. :slight_smile: