He reflects around some really important questions in his story, the most important one being why he started smoking. Alexis says he started because it was cool, or actually because he thought he'd look as cool as his idols with a cigarette in hand. I'm guessing I'm not the only one who can recognize myself if this. Smoking has an aura of cool surrounding it, says Alexis, and he also gives the gateway argument some proper kicks in the nuts:
Even so, the life of the vaper isn't without minor privations. If the argument that e-cigarettes will ultimately lure kids into smoking seems specious, I suspect that's largely because the one thing that smoking an e-cigarette definitely doesn't do is make you look good. Quite the opposite: whatever the health benefits, it feels faintly pathetic whipping out an e-cigarette when the people around you are smoking the real thing, like turning up at the Giro d'Italia on a bike with stabilisers.Love that Giro d'Italia analogy. And I like how he points out how horrible a cigarette tastes after you've been vaping for a while. This is why only never-smokers clings to the gateway argument. To a vaper who has successfully quit smoking completely, it's just ridiculous.
As I said, I really enjoyed reading Alexis' story, but it also made me think that some vapers have to think twice before going public with their story. I'm thinking about stars and celebrities. Their stories have the potential to influence a lot of people if published. These people have to remember that they are the idols of thousands, in some cases maybe millions of teens. If told in the right way they could possibly help a lot of smokers make the switch, but told wrongly, without making it very clear that this is not a habit you should pick up if you're not already a smoker, they can easily recruit non-smoking teenagers as well. I'm not pointing fingers here, in fact I've not seen any examples of such stories coming out in the wrong way, it was just a thought. And a reminder to any teen idol that reads my blog :) Actually, when I think about it, it might be a good reminder to all of us, especially parents, cause even though you're not on TV your story might influence your kids (or their friends) so make sure they get the correct version. You might be someones idol without even knowing it.