Carolyn Smeaton is worried. The 48-year-old resident of Fall River, MA, used to smoke 3 packs a day, but cut that amount in half by supplementing her habit with e-cigarettes-liquid nicotine vaporizers. “It’s far exceeded my expectations,” she told her local paper last month. “I feel like this could save my life,” she tells the New York Times. Now, however, the FDA is threatening to ban the products. “I’m a nervous wreck,” Smeaton informs the Wall Street Journal. With all those reporters calling her for quotes on the product, no wonder! The woman deserves a smoke.
Technically, they call the process of inhalation “vaping,” which is just a terrible word. Public health authorities are troubled by the product because it comes in child-friendly flavors like chocolate, strawberry, and cherry, and Neapolitan. Another concern: “Nobody knows what the consumers are actually inhaling,” although one identified ingredient is propylene glycol, which is also used in antifreeze. (And probably in real cigarettes, given all the crap they coat them with.) The FDA is still evaluating the product “to determine the appropriate action to take,” so the battle’s not over yet. But no matter what happens, Carolyn Smeaton will be there to provide commentary. Unless the lung cancer gets her first.