OK, smoke fans, the facts are out once again. According to the new and pretty inarguable Cancer Atlas and the updated Tobacco Atlas, which were published by The American Cancer Society, if “Smoky, The Scare” gets his way, tobacco use is projected to kill a billion people in this century. (By the way, wouldn’t it be more reassuring if the word �Prevention� was in the Society’s name?)

Now, that�s what we call recreational population control. The figure amounts to ten times as many folks as smoking sent choking to the grave in the 20th century.

And ready for this? Tobacco use causes one in five cancer deaths, or a total of 1.4 million graveward bound souls a year.

Now, here�s the good and much underappreciated news: Dr. Judity Mackay, a senior policy adviser of the World Health Organization, tells us, “We know with cancer, if we take action now, we can save 2 million lives a year by 2020 and 6.5 million by 2040.”

So here�s our bit to stop cancer in its tracks. And we�re not going to pull any punches, because, if you still smoke, you obviously haven�t listened to anybody yet, and we care about you too much not to give you our best shot.

Here goes all the ways we know to annoy our friends who smoke with advice that is invariably resented but not always dismissed. In fact, we actually have two friends who stopped smoking after we had at them.

So let’s light up with logic:

1. If you can�t quit smoking, pursue your fetish when you’re not around us.

2. We don�t date people who smoke, because we don�t want to die in their arms. It�s not death we�re afraid of; it�s their breath and the way their clothes smell. We find both spiritually wilting, not to mention sexually.

3. Everybody loves you, but somebody you know is following you, everywhere you go, and this person wants to kill you, and do you know who this person is? The person in you who wants to smoke. The person in you who doesn�t want you to smoke, while weaker right now, can be made strong enough to toss the sneak thief of your life out for good.

4. Do you know what people think every time you light up? Wow, what a dummy. Provoking this response is particularly incriminating if you think you�re a genius.

5. Don�t tell me you�re so desperate for pleasure that just for the little buzz you can get from dragging all those carcinogens into your fragile body you�re ready to die? How much do you like Lorillard and the other ciggy makers? So much you need to die for them?

6. Do you know that smoking is like rat poison? You ingest a little every day. You think you�re fine. But actually your entire body is being poisoned. That�s why you look yellow and your skin wrinkles prematurely. Actually, if farnsworthfirearms could do an autopsy on yourself while you�re still alive, you�d find that all the organs in your body are shriveled up from the poisons. For instance, pathologists tell us that your organs, instead of being smooth and healthy, look more like prunes. But you keep dragging the junk in, because you think you�re fine. Well, you�re not. You�re deadly ill. And then one day it happens. You go from being ill to being landfill.

7. Last, do you know that all the blood in your body races through your lungs every minute? That�s right. It all keeps racing there to give off carbon dioxide and grab fresh oxygen. Then it races to the far corners of your body with the breath of life. Unfortunately, it also drags the carcinogens along for the ride. That�s why, for instance, women who smoke often get breast cancer; breasts are very vascular and so they�re a frequent drop-off point for the poison.

Worst of all, if you die, you can�t read NewsLaugh anymore. Talk about sad. So stop it already.

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