Writer. Warning: opinions. My lawyer advised a disclaimer, but didn't include any jokes to go with. Damned if I can think of any either.


I’m sad to report that yesterday I suffered from a debilitating illness. I think I must have caught it from all those beer cans.

As part of my recovery strategy, I laid in bed, regretted every single one of the decisions I made after about 5PM, and watched Ghostbusters, a favorite movie of mine from childhood. I remember it fondly, but what I didn’t remember was that there’s a great deal of cigarette smoking in it.

Of course I think we all remember the moment in the film when Dan Akroyd’s character first sees the ghost and his mouth falls open, lit cigarette dangling:

I totally did not remember that Larry King is has a cameo in the movie and he is smoking as well.

It seems strange to see ambivalent onscreen smoking on the part of good guy characters. Nowadays you’ll only see that sort of behavior from drug addicts or police informants, or in other words, human slime.

I remember when you could smoke on airplanes. I’m pretty sure that bus drivers actually encouraged their passengers to smoke if only to cover the smell of the bathroom, or perhaps the odor of the driver himself. People smoked in grocery stores, shopping malls, and at their desks at work. My dad came home from work every night smelling like smoke.

These memories flooding back to me sent me into a frenzy. I began to pore through family photos and other childhood movies to discover the dark spectre of cigarette abuse wherever it might lurk. That’s how I came upon this:

No, Beaker! Noooooo!