A New Terror

via @Dick Puddlecote on Twitter comes the latest in paranoid scareware.

Isn’t it delightful? It picks up parts-per-billion of nicotine. It is not intended to detect whether you have been smoking in a rental car or hotel room, there are far cheaper ways of doing that (the cheapest and best is called a ‘nose’). It is intended to detect second and third hand smoke. You know, stuff that doesn’t really exist.

I used to marvel at people buying ‘ghost detectors’ when nobody can say what ghosts are made of. The sellers were amateurs – this new breed sell things to detect the totally undetectable. Stuff nobody can claim to have ever seen. Amazing.

Parts per billion. Sit in that rental car and eat a tomato or a bag of chips. There isn’t much nicotine in either of those things but in an enclosed space with a detector that sensitive, you will be banned from ever hiring a car or hotel room again. Even if you have never so much as seen someone else smoking.

They are making wearable ones too. Oh, the fun to have, giving away cheese and tomato sandwiches to people wearing this thing. There will be total fear at any buffet when the potato salad sets it off, and the wearer notices his wrist flashing red.

“No! No! There is SMOKE in this room! One of you is a SMOKER! We are all going to die! AAAAH!”

Ha! An invention designed to heighten imagined terror right into the top end of heart-attack territory. I wish I’d thought of it. This thing will kill off the antismokers far more efficiently than anything I could dream up, including the dream involving the anvil and the ones involving various forms of heavy machinery with spikes on them. I think the dream-anvil had spikes on it too. Probably. I like spikes.

I must get hold of one, and find the best innocuous substance to set it off. Any Electrofag will do it, of course. You won’t even need to puff it, just press the button for a second and put it back in your pocket. It would set off every detector in the room and when the mob is panicked, you just point at the Dreadful Arnott and say ‘There she is’.

An Electrofag filled with tomato juice… the element would be ruined but they aren’t all that expensive and it would be so worth it. But then it doesn’t need to be that drastic. Nicotine solution in one that doesn’t look anything like an Electrofag, with no flavouring, perhaps with no PG so there isn’t any visible steam.

Every one of us could play ‘Angel of Death’ by setting off every paranoia-detector we pass. Set them off in hotel rooms with a quick squirt under the door. A shot into the air vents of rental cars. Antismokers will be sleeping in the streets and walking everywhere.

Oh wait – the streets are full of smokers…

I really hope this thing takes off big-time. They’ll have absolutely nowhere to hide.

And everything to fear.



8 thoughts on “A New Terror

  1. Are you sure that it isn’t a parody article, LI? I mean; a third-hand smoke detector??? WTF? Somebody has to be taking the piss here…


    • It could be something like those golf ball finders / bomb detectors they sold to Iraq… I hope not. I really hope they do what they say.

      The Righteous want to scare the drones into compliance. I just want to scare them to death.


  2. Leggy, I think there’s going to be lawsuits-a-flyin’ over this earth-shattering invention.

    I first got wind of thirdhand smoke from a piece the inimitable Uncle Marvo put up way back in February 2010.

    If you click on one of the links he included you’ll be taken to a page which leads to the California Consortium on Thirdhand Smoke webpage, which has pictures of the early prototype thirdhand smoke detecting apparatus being wielded by the brave and very geeky real trailblazers Lara Gundel and Hugo Destaillats.

    While Uncle Marvo deserves the credit for being the early bird, I’m going to shortcut this and go straight for the kill shot here. Most of his original article links are long gone.

    The Real Prototype Thirdhand Smoke Detectors

    For those who chose to read the Marvo’s outstanding original post, here it is in all its glory. He’s a very gifted writer.

    One, two, three, die.

    At the conclusion he ‘Hat tips: The excellent Leg-Iron and Mr Bite’


    • I can think of only one reason to ever visit California.

      To drive huge explosive wedges into that fault line and make the whole damn place sink into the sea.

      And I’d light the fuse with a cigar.


    • The whole SHS nonsense is a parody of real science.

      It’s bringing the whole of science into disrepute. Sooner or later, science will purge itself of this and all the other charlatans. But that would require a loosening of the idiot left’s grip on universities.

      Could take a while.


  3. For fun loving people, the consequences of widespread introduction of these gadgets could not be better. Imagine such a gadget in a corridor in any public building. Now imagine a smoker blowing tobacco smoke into a balloon. Need I say more? The gadgets would be going off all over the place for no apparent reason. Wonderful!!


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