But What I Don't Understand is...

Here are three things I don't quite understand.

What exactly is this poster trying to say?

Is it saying "Don't smoke because it's bad for your health"? No, it's saying, "Don't smoke cheap cigarettes because they might be illegally imported which is...erm, bad for your in some other way. But we don't know what".

What precisely are the dangers of smoking cheap cigarettes, over and above smoking expensive ones? And why does our beloved government want us to know about them now?

There are no posters telling us not to put cheap imported batteries in our mp3 players. There's no media campaign warning us about completely unspecified dangers of buying cheap clothes from street vendors. We're not even warned against moonshine brewed in someone's garage.

And what the hell do they mean by 'fake cigarettes'?

Treasure Island Media make gay porn. Porn that somehow manages to be breathtakingly direct and unpretentious, accompanied by astonishingly pretentious interviews and press releases - stuff about sexual uninhibitedness promoting world peace and putting good honest sweat back into the sanitised porn market.

They've announced a new movie - or should that be "release" - with only HIV-positive performers.

Some commentators are saying it's exploitative and tasteless - demeaning to people with HIV.

Um. How? Surely it can't be because people with a virus shouldn't be allowed to have sex because...well, we only like them when they're sexless victims. Just like we only like gay celebrities who drop smutty innuendos all the time but never have sex.

And finally, my lunch.

It's nice. I want to have some more soon. But it's...curried lasagna. I don't understand why that feels wrong.


  1. There's an iranian shop near us that sells 'cheap' cigarettes. They've been shut down several times ... remain closed for less than a day before opening up again and continuing to sell 'cheap' cigarettes.

    The brand most people are concerned about is 'Gin Ling.' The packet looks like the Camel brand. 2.50gbp is the price, which is half the price of any legitimate brand. They are awful and filled with god knows what. But cheap. Apparently, if you have the dosh, you can buy a container of them for 60,000gbp - which earns you a return of nearly 1,000,000gbp ... provided the container isn't confiscated.

  2. Rats! I meant to ask are you doing NaNoWriMo?

  3. So cheap cigarettes contain dried leafy stuff even cheaper than tabacco. I've been in the same room as someone so desperate for a smoke they made a rollup with the contents of a teabag - and the result did indeed smell revolting.

    Nanowrimo - I'd like to, but I've got several other projects going on. Mixing an album for the band, and doing mathematical magic for other musical projects. I seem to spend my time helping out other musicians.

    A month spent writing would be good though. I trust you will be frantically typing away.