As far as nicotine delivery services go, vaping is the most efficient but the least pleasurable. That honor is reserved for cigarettes, which are nasty and horrible but, like many things both nasty and horrible, also deeply enjoyable in a naughty way to those who are addicted to nicotine and have been for some time (hello). Vaping, a public scourge reviled by Melania Trump, is not best. Vaping has caused death, exploding lungs, teens in comas, and a variety of other nightmares that are objectively terrible. As a cigarette replacement system, vaping is fine. But people have died. The mint JUUL pods are gone. Mango, we never knew her. Via this questionable calculus, I have come to the conclusion that vaping must be canceled, thought not for the reasons one might think.
Death and other unfortunate side effects aside, vaping is undeniably, irrevocably, deeply uncool. A JUUL, which is by far the most discreet vape “rig” out there, is an adult binky—a USB stick that crackles when “smoked” and causes its owners mild to moderate panic when the little light in the front flashes yellow. The pods are now available only in Virginia Tobacco, Tobacco, and Menthol, three sub-par flavors that make the act of vaping nicotine via a metal stick less pleasurable than ever before.
Goodbye forever to the icy, clean prick of a freshly-opened mint pod—bracing like good toothpaste, but without the saccharine sweetness. Mango’s tropical, Haribo-adjacent vibe is now a thing of distant memory, unless the vaper in question feels like paying $30 for a pack of four and savoring each pull. There are so few pleasures left in the world and now that vaping anything good is off the table, what else is left? Cigarettes? Again? In this economy? Even though the act of smoking a cigarette affords the smoker seven to ten sweet moments of silence, standing outside on a street corner in the dark—in front of a bar, outside of work, around the corner from a Uniqlo—returning to the devil’s sticks is not feasible. Do not do it, though it is tempting. Vaping is canceled because the remaining JUUL flavors suck, but kicking cigarettes for the second time is probably worse. Death? Seems fine. Bring it on.