|il fiore bel |
Well, they're half-right.
|The Mothership |
When did menthol cigarettes become a black thing? Serious question here.
I think it might have caught on around the time of that Morgan Freeman commercial, and I think Newports and Kools started doing the "100s" thing before other brands. To me anyway, the "long" means more than the cigarette, if you get what I'm saying. Newports were cheaper, so that's a possible theory. Stick with what you know and other people are doing it too. A black dude broke it down for me one day when I was a kid working at a Plaid Pantry, who came in every day and got Newport 100s in a softpack. We'd always run out of the softpacks but have plenty of 100s in a box so I offered him those. He reluctantly bought the box and carefully put every cigarette back into his empty softpack. I was pretty naive so I just asked "what's the deal?" And he laughed and went into his version. Yes, the "100s" is a euphemism for penis size, but the soft part indicates that it's 100.. when it's soft, again, if you get what I'm saying.
Dave Chappelle said it best: "nobody knows." I don't think the Menthol part really factors in at all, but I could be wrong.
Menthols have been sold to black people for as long as the statistics charting what black people smoke have been kept. It was a weird thing to notice when looking up how many people Morgan Freeman killed.
I don't have any actual evidence, but I could find a thousand really racist anecdotes if you like.
I don't really think it's "racist," it's more the context, like Watermelon or Fried Chicken. A white person asking a black person "why do you people like those things" is racist, because said black person could be vegetarian and a non-smoker. But asking why on a grand scale isn't. And there is a reason for chicken and waffles. And unfortunately it dates back to Slavery, when silverware wasn't provided to slaves, hence portable food. So it's uncomfortable, but it's historically accurate, whether we like it or not.
Here's something fucked up about cigarettes though: I was watching Adult Swim last night, mostly for Black Jesus (which has gotten pretty fucking great) and they have the black dude pulling out his tooth as payment. In the American Dad preceding it (yeah, I sorry I know) he asks for a pack of "Menthols" specifically, and the announcer says something like "smoking menthols can lead to tooth loss," something like that. During Black Jesus, the same commercial ran, but there was no mention of menthols. It was just overdubbed with "cigarettes." I'm not sure exactly what their tactic is, like "Hey black people! White People Cowboy Cigarettes are bad for you too!" or what.
Big Freudian slip with the "chicken and waffles" (meant to say "watermelon") and here's why: I was friends with a man who taught a black history class at a mostly white university (Wisconsin) so he'd come into my store and we'd just shoot the shit, mostly about music. Anyway he was telling me about this Chicken and Waffles place that was opening right off campus. I was like "what the fuck?" to me it didn't make any sense. He just laughed and said "well it's a black thing, you're welcome white guy."
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