Commercials, cigarettes, lifestyle

Disclaimer: This article is not politically correct. Despite its very serious nature, it(even the disclaimer itself) contains sarcasm, humor, free speech, sharply sincere and insensitive ways of describing some categories of people and their habits, not to mention other tendencies of democracy, such as considerably long sentences (and occasional typos^_^), forcing people to focus a little more than an average facebook status. Although it's not meant to be offensive, if you feel you could be offended by those things, then I apologize and recommend your reconsideration whether to continue, or not. If this is not the case, then enjoy!

    Happy are not those who can get everything they desire for; but those who don’t desire for what they don’t have.

Sunday, 10:30 am. With my eyes still shut, I grabbed the radio beside my bed and in a few moments, Sandra’s voice started to fill my room. Once I had regained full consciousness, I suddenly realized, some voice was telling me, there is simply no way for me to live without his washing product. So I turned on the TV, soon fascinated by some woman drinking from a bottle of mineral water, dancing through a square, accompanied by roughly hundred others.
          People working in advertising business know very well how and where to place their work, making “potential customers” completely unable to hide from it. This is not exclusive just to advertisements. Notice when you go shopping to a hypermarket (for example), the most expensive things are in the clear field of vision, always highly noticeable for us. On the other hand, cheap things are almost hidden somewhere usually near the floor. Next, notice that groceries in this kind of store are usually located in its far end, so if someone wants to buy just cookies, fruits, etc, s/he’ll have no choice but to make a journey across almost all departments and thus shall be impressed by some (possibly not only one) super extra totally ultra money saving offer, because “sellers” are the most compassionate species on this planet, therefore they couldn’t let your too heavy wallet cause you back pain or perhaps put you in the risk of having a too much money possibly stolen from your account (at least by someone else…).
          Another innocent-looking, yet strategic move is to put "candy boxes" near the registers. That way customers waiting in the line (in)directly look at it, so the subconsciousness can make its move, often causing them (mostly their children) to grab something more than originally planned. I don’t know if it’s the case where you live, but waiting in lines sometimes tend to be awfully long. Imagine a young couple waiting, getting bored and expecting a romantic evening. What a convenience to have bottles of Champagne, etc. Same scenario, but now smokers are waiting, slowly getting nervous, waiting to go outside, to get their fix. Why wouldn’t they take few more packs, if there is a big transparent box right in front of them, rendering their mighty brains paralyzed, taken over by the subconscious mind putting another nail into their proverbial gaskets.
          We have spoken about commercials and brainwashing techniques in stores. Now let’s focus on another relatively special branch of advertisement. “Tobacco advertisement”. Special, because it promotes items that kill. Of course, with an excuse, that it surely doesn’t make anyone smoke it, right? It is safe to say, the main purpose of this type of commercial is to make the first impression only, leaving the rest of the job for the addiction it brings. Let no one tell me it doesn't - I've met some of those. My friends, please… Open your glimpses… Seriously? We live in a very peculiar world, where you can find a cigarette ad, right next to another one about fighting cancer.
          We all know the huge 30 meters big billboards, full of sunsets, running horses, idyllic sceneries with people and their adventures, on others we see deep eyes, filled with passion - I think with a caption bellow, saying: "liberté toujours” [always free]. In other words, we see everything beautiful and perfect. However, there is one little detail, we never see here. Cigarettes! Of course, how could we. How could it look so romantically with smoking appendixes in those peoples’ mouths… Not to mention their always showing white teeth, perfect hair, clear eyes… I think you’ve got the idea. Just to be honest, the idea of kissing a girl-smoker would make the content of my stomach say “hello”. Now, please, if you are offended, read the disclaimer once again. Thank you:-).
          Anyway, to look at this point closely, we have to ask a very fundamental question. “What is the essence of tobacco commercials?” Before we answer it, let’s do a little survey. When I was around six, I used to stop people passing on the street, telling them smoking is bad for their health. Nowadays, I rather ask people “why”. What makes them smoke, respectively - what was the initial reason for them to begin. At high school i’ve collected some of both more and less interesting answers. Few examples of those less interesting ones: “why do u care?”, “Its my business”. As for the more interesting: “You know, you won’t understand it, unless you try.” (note: Trust me, this understanding is absolutely NOT worth trying it!) Although, the answer seems to be logical. However, however, however… the biggest part of the answers were a little bit different. “All cool folks smoke!” or “My friends do it, why not me…”. Wow! What a perfect example of -so called- “collective intelligence”. This property, we can observe in ants, as a certain compensation compared to beings equipped with their own brain. Having your own brain means, you wouldn’t jump from a skyscraper, even if every one else around you did, telling you how “cool" it is. (note: disclaimer :-) )
          Ok, now the question. “What is the essence of tobacco commercials?” The essence of tobacco commercials is to make the target person believe that if s/he smokes, s/he’ll be “cool”. In a way, you may say it’s true. With every package, your coolness will grow. You will be “cooler" and “cooler" and eventually you will “freeze" to death. While the nicotine is making sure you are going to need it more and more, tars and other “delicious” ingredients are cumulatively stored inside not only your lungs, slowly preparing the “outro” of your life. Did you know the nicotine isn’t the worst part of cigarettes? Some people still don’t have the slightest idea what they actually smoke.
          When we are unhappy with ourselves, we want various things, even loose ourselves in drugs and other addictions. The reason we do it is ALWAYS to improve our situation, to get better - however stupid the means we use may be and however differently we may end. Everything we do is sub/consciously driven by our wish to be happy. Both in the short and long run. That we have in-common with all the sentient beings on this planet. At least considering the short-run stage.
          In these ultra-fast times of modern living, we often forget to “think". That’s the problem. When we “don’t think”, we think only in the super-short run”. Yes, a cigarette or other drug will make you happier for the following twenty minutes. In this case, the point is totally valid. Unfortunately, that’s exactly how we make many decisions in our lives.

    Sometimes, it seems even unthinkable how easily we are able to ruin our lives just by “not thinking”.

Usually, if you feel unhappy, it’s much better to try to come out with a solution how to be happier, than to make it worse. Trust me, if there is in this moment no actual way to get out from your sorrow, then pessimism will be totally irrational. Don’t tell me to overcome your mind’s stereotypes is harder than to suffer even more from feeling unhappy about it. My friends, we are masters of misinterpreting our emotions. We are masters of confusing happiness with joy. By happiness, we mean something lasting, some ever-present good feeling and stability in our lives, letting us live peacefully, not allowing ourselves to loose patience and be pessimistic. On contrary, joy is an evanescent emotion, a sudden spike of endorphins we feel from time to time, lasting only for a few moments and then, it often goes as fast as it comes. Tell me, how could you exchange the whole life of happiness for this unstable and occasional pleasure, usually separated by long times of suffering from our own desires and ignorance.

    To be happy doesn’t mean to have no difficulties. It means not to let our selves become overwhelmed by the emotion of helplessness.

It isn’t easy, but it’s possible. It’s totally worth trying. Every single one of us is going to be dead for an unimaginably long time. Our life is a very short adventure on Earth. Why make it even shorter?…

慧淨̄



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