Monday, May 21, 2018

A Cigarette Company Sent Me a Metal Mug for My Birthday-Month, So That's Weird

The mug and little card that opens to wish me a happy birthday
Not too long ago I made a post about the weird and now mostly-hidden world of cigarette advertising. I signed-up with Marlboro and was able to explore their odd website full of hyper-masculine, fetishistic love of cowboy imagery. They also started sending me coupons for packs and cartons that I give to a friend who smokes (they've tried in the past to quit, but struggle). The other day in the mail I got a little box from Marlboro and was confused as to what it could be. I opened it up to find I had been given a metal mug like the kind cowboys would have theoretically used, "On the range," in the past  plus a card wishing me a happy birthday.

The mug itself is pretty nice. A little paper about how to keep it good condition says it is dishwasher safe but shouldn't be microwaved. It just feels weird to get a present from a company that sends these to people basically saying, "Thanks for inhaling our product that kills you, enjoy this mug!" The way they made the mug look all old-timey with the metal design so that when using it I can theoretically feel like a, "Real," cowboy is another example of ingeniously twisted marketing for sure too.
The mug in its box.
I think I'll keep the mug because it'll be a good conversation piece when folk ask how I got it and I can tell them its strange history. That said, it still is bizarre and both at once a clever and insidious thing for a cigarette company such as Marlboro to do--"This big corporation cares enough about me to give me a present! I guess I'll keep smoking their brand until I develop cancer!" In all fairness though, it is a good quality mug. That doesn't make-up for the fact that cigarettes kill countless people and resulted in the eventual death of my Grandmother (who admittedly didn't smoke Marlboro, but yeah) despite her numerous attempts to quit--no matter how much big tobacco might wish it does--but yeah, the mug is nice. I'd rather have my Grandmother lived longer, though.

1 comment:

  1. Sorry about your Grandma :( Those packages really do have a huge influence and can trigger someone who has quit to start again!!