We were surprised to learn today that the company who will no doubt be responsible for our untimely death (knock on wood) a few decades from now doesn't believe it's got enough American women hooked on nicotine.
That's right: R.J. Reynolds — purveyor of Camel cigarettes, among others — is trying to grab a higher share of the stinky-female market by introducing a new cigarette for all of those leftover wanna-be Carrie Bradshaws.
The new variation, Camel No. 9, has a name that evokes women's fragrances like Chanel No. 19, as well as a song about romance, "Love Potion No. 9."
But don't look for a Jo Camel to join Old Joe the dromedary on Camel packages, displays or posters. Rather, Camel No. 9 signals its intended buyers with subtler cues like its colors, a hot-pink fuchsia and a minty-green teal; its slogan, "Light and luscious"; and the flowers that surround the packs in magazine ads.
The hope, of course, is that the Lilly Pulitzer-hued packaging and the name — which a R.J. Reynolds marketing director claims is "...meant to suggest 'dressed to the nines, putting on your best'"— will rope in girly-girls who see nothing hypocritical in the juxtaposition of a product that fills your lungs with tar and toxins with pink flowers and suggestions of high fashion. We say this, people, because we're addicted to cigarettes. And we don't want you to be.