Is smoking cool?

So the Dutch are smoking less. It seems it’s no longer cool to smoke. But the rebels amongst us (and surely that’s everyone in Holland over the age of 40…) remember exactly how cool it was to smoke in the days when we sort of knew smoking was bad but nobody was talking about it too much.

Picture a school, any school in the seventies and there they are: the cool kids (weren’t they called ‘hip’ in those days?) with their packets of tobacco jammed into their skin-tight jeans.
Remember how they went through the ritual of rolling what they hoped would be the world’s thinnest fag (with or without a sprinkling of cannabis).
That dexterous hand and finger action of the roll-up brigade could always count on admiring looks from the less cool crowd. And that thrilling moment when the roll-up was lit… and the inevitable coughing smothered. Those were the days when lungs were lungs…
But of course, over time, instead of being cool, the roll-ups and tobacco bags became a badge of the aging hippy desperately trying to hold on to the past and wheezing and spitting into the bargain. Not very cool at all.
And now it’s the turn of the ready-made cigarette to go the same way as 1.5 million people say farewell to the habit.
To be cool today you need to walk around with nothing more sinful than a bottle of water thrust into your back pocket.

Thank you for donating to

We could not provide the Dutch News service, and keep it free of charge, without the generous support of our readers. Your donations allow us to report on issues you tell us matter, and provide you with a summary of the most important Dutch news each day.

Make a donation