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Opening Arguments

Puff piece

This is a strange one. From an Indiana University new release (full report is here -- pdf file):

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Cigarette use by Indiana sixth through 12th graders continued to decline, but findings from the 20th Annual Survey of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Other Drug Use also pointed to increases in marijuana use and in tobacco use in pipes.

Marijuana, OK, even if K2 is cutting into the market a little. But pipe smoking? Middle and high school kids are puffing away on pipes? My dad smoked a pipe, so I flirted briefly with the practice. But it made me feel even more like a minority oddball than smoking in general did, and the damn things require such fussy busywork -- clean, load, tamp down, light, relight, relight again. How can the kids keep up with all that and texting, too? But they're so use to multitasking that they can probably do the pipe stuff with one hand and the texting with the other while they steer with their knees.


Wed, 09/08/2010 - 12:18pm

I'm not exactly sure why, but when any man under the age of 50 smokes a pipe, it just looks silly.

Lewis Allen
Wed, 09/08/2010 - 7:06pm

My experience with pipe smoking sounds a lot like Leo's. It's hard to believe kids would have the patience to do this. I don't buy it. They're probably talking about 'one-hitters'.

Susie Q.
Wed, 09/08/2010 - 7:47pm

Susan Hayward smoked a pipe when she portrayed Andrew Jackson's (Chuck Heston's) wife and "first lady" (Rachel Jackson?) in a fifties b/w film. Awesome. LOVE LOVE LOVE your final sentence, Leo! Nice title, too! Need to google that classic movie right this second!

Wed, 09/08/2010 - 9:32pm

How do they account for the "smartass" percentage of kids saying they use pipes just to frak with the data collectors?

Thu, 09/09/2010 - 9:48am

@Michaelk42: Excellent point. I never trust polls based on self-reporting of personal behavior.
I you actually believed that sort of poll, you would have to believe that no one ever watches porn, cheats on his income taxes or engages in what my grandparents called "self-abuse." Yeah, sure.