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Created 15-Jan-2018
Owner ninawu
Title Making the smoker seem less earthy than ethereal
Description For women, the smoking ban is the end of something that only recently began. The long-standing taboo on women lighting up in public faded away at the time of the First World War, when cigarettes were promoted by tobacco companies in America as 'torches of freedom'. But while a cigarette in a man's mouth can express a range of emotions and give him a fathomless depth, a woman who smokes wants only one thing. As Jeffrey Bernard put it, 'girls who are very difficult to get into bed usually don't smoke'. We never forget the female smokers: think of Scarlett Johansson, dazzling in The Black Dahlia; Michelle Pfeiffer drawing on her cigar in The Age of Innocence; Gillian Anderson in The House of Mirth; Anne Bancroft scheming her way through The Graduate; Faye Dunaway exhaling throughout Chinatown; Bridget Jones keeping a count on the Silk Cuts she consumes; Madame Bovary smoking in the street, 'as if to defy the people'; Grace Poole fagging it in the attic in Jane Eyre; Helen Mirren in Prime Suspect; the much married Pat Butcher in EastEnders, pursing her lips around another of her Super Kings; Hilda Ogden, no doubt a beauty in her day, fag a part of her face; Patsy in Ab Fab shoving five into her mouth after a trip in a smoke-free taxi; Catherine Zeta Jones, all in a haze in Chicago; Rizzo in Grease, goading Sandy to let go of her lousy virginity and have a drag. Easy lays, all. But we have more cinematic representations of heavily smoking men than we do women - Brad Pitt wins the prize for the most lightings-up on screen (42) between July 2004 and July 2005, which is odd because the cigarette itself, as the Marlboro Cigarettes Price flirtatious 'ette' reminds us, is defiantly female in the same way that cigars are virulently male. This is what J. M. Men enjoy them, throw them away, and then pick up another one just the same. It follows that when a woman lights up, it is Sapphic love, a moment of girl-on-girl action, which is why the voyeuristic Michael Douglas (who has given up) can't get enough of watching Sharon Stone smoke. Unlike cigars, cigarettes are not to be trusted; as Kipling neatly put it, 'A woman is only a woman, but a good cigar is a smoke.' The feline beauty of cigarettes is such that they are in danger of feminising men altogether, hence we call them 'fags' and allow only the alpha male to smoke on screen. Then, if he removes his cigarette from his lips at all, he will hold it differently, either at the filter, making an 'O' shape with his thumb and first finger, or by folding his hand over the lit end, as though he were about to whistle for a cab. It is women and drag queens who pose with their ciggies at the tips of their second and third fingers, flicking out a V-sign. Either Online Cigarettes this, or, like Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany's, or Glenn Close in 101 Dalmatians, a cigarette Newport Cigarettes Price holder creates a distance from the act, making the smoker seem less earthy than ethereal. Have rumours of their death been exaggerated? Cigarettes will rise phoenix-like from their own ashes to be born again, if not in public places then certainly in myth. There may be no more cigarettes in corridors, in T. S. Eliot's words, or indeed in films, but we will mourn the death of a cultural icon and an emblem of modernity. Lady Nicotine, so her elegy will go, was a time-consuming, money-wasting, health-destroying social evil, but, hell, there will never be her match again.
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