The Pub Is My Womb

January 27th, 2006 | mobilesignals



“Cigarettes are my food,” said Frank Zappa. And then he died of testicular cancer. Which came as no surprise to anyone who’d heard him wanking in recording studios for thirty years, but still. Anyone who names his kid Moon Unit is plainly asking for his balls to rot off. Because there is such a thing as karma. Welcome to the concept of universal payback.

I quit smoking when I was thirty. There then followed three years of medical holocaust. I had a cold for a year, I developed a terminal allergy to housedust, my mouthwas ravaged by some hideous infection that stopped me eating anything harder than soup, I collapsed and was kept chemically unconscious by pain medication for a mouth, my circulatory system tried to kill my brain… And this, understand, is from NOT smoking.

I cannot deny my genetics. I cannot fight that which was hard-wired into me by my father’s tea-coloured, nicotine-riddled seed. You go ahead and pretend that car fumes are magic stardust and the greatest threat to life on earth is cigarette smoke. But the ineluctable, medical truth of the matter is that if I do not smoke I will DIE.
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17 Responses to “The Pub Is My Womb”

  1. Zappa actually died of prostate cancer.

    http://www.memorabletv.com/memorablemusic/frankzappa.htm

  2. I bet you jerk off over Snopes, don’t you?

  3. I suppose, then, it’s a very good thing that the one US convention you’re attending this year is in North Carolina, where they hand cigs to you when you cross the border.

  4. may i be amused at the way the computer voice pronounces “wanking”?

  5. I think its fair, Mario. You should feel lucky that the computer got that far. One time it got JUST far enough to say “post hoc ergo proctor hoc, which means ‘I crush you with my thighs’”. That was fun.

  6. You remind me of Mr Burns from Simpsons. He had such a delicate balance of bacteria and disease, that it was that system keeping him alive.

  7. Warren, I read recently in an interview about your allergy to housedust and I see you’ve mentioned it again here. What are your symptoms? For the past year, I’ve been trying every medication and treatment known to science for a sudden allergy I’ve developed that makes my eyeballs try to crawl out of their sockets, but only when I’m inside home or the workplace. Skin tests show I’m allergic to a million things, but I think it might be dust that is the serious problem. If you have something similar, have you found anything that works for even temporary relief? I’m at my wits end with mine.

  8. I turned 30 not too long ago and I’ve been considering giving up the smoke. You know, so I can be healthy and not die as soon. I am no longer sure if that’s such a good idea…

  9. warren, i think that’s the most intelligent thing i’ve heard all day. if i don’t smoke, other people will DIE.

  10. [...] Warren Ellis has a short post about smoking today that I think both of you and everyone else who comes here looking for nipples would appreciate. [...]

  11. [...] Some days, Warren Ellis is my hero. Other days, it’s Jeffrey Rowland. But my heart belongs to Nick Cave. [...]

  12. Hmmm. My friend Dave is a chronic smoker. Once, he cut his hand open will trying to open a bar of soap, and he started bleeding all over the floor. We said to him, “Dave, let’s go to the store and get some band-aids.” Instead, he put a paper towel on his hand and attached it with duct-tape. He said, “Hang on, I want a cigarette, first.”

    Once he tried to quit smoking. He developed asthma and had a stroke within three days. We concluded that tar is basically what’s holding his lungs together, now.

  13. I agree.
    I’ll smoke till there’s no more cigarettes in the world to smoke

  14. I try to stop smoking several times a year, but the stress of my job makes every attempt a waste of time.
    I’m 31 now, been smoking since I was 15. I figure I have to stop by 40 if I want to be damage free in my old age.

  15. The definition of cigarette:
    A pinch of tobacco, rolled in paper, with fire at one end and a fool at the other.

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