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November 8, 1985

When the World Is Your Ashtray

Author Affiliations

Tustin, Calif

JAMA. 1985;254(18):2596. doi:10.1001/jama.1985.03360180098033

Are you losing confidence in your ability to smoke in the face of stiffer health warnings? Or worse, do you feel as if it just isn't worth the effort anymore? Don't be discouraged. Blind faith is the key to success in any endeavor, but achieving just the right balance of puffery and downright denial can be tricky. It is especially difficult when your best friend—a smoker of nearly 30 years—is beginning to experience hemoptysis.

I think I've solved the problem with several hints that will bring your confidence level back up before you have to undergo chemotherapy. Just remember that the tobacco companies wouldn't take out all of those full-page newspaper and magazine ads if they wanted you to stop.

Associate with smokers. It's downright annoying to have nonsmoking friends ask you to sign "clean air" petitions while you're enjoying coffee and a cigarette. If you don't make friends