The year was 2017. You started off liking the music on your playlist ironically, but it began to grow on you regardless of lyrical quality or production. The meme of white dogs with AirPods on was traveling like crazy, Pardon My Take announced a show on ESPN, and Bears rookie Mitch Trubinsky might be the answer in Chicago. Your friend, who has just gotten back from visiting his sister at college, pulls out this crazy device. Before this point, people had handheld vapes, but you’d never seen anything like this. It was gray, it was slick, in a weird unexplainable way, it resembled one of Don Draper’s mistresses, and hearing it crackle for the first time made your heart skip a beat. What the fuck is this? You exclaimed to your friend. It’s called a Juul, he replied, doesn’t this shit hit.
There are moments in life when someone takes a lesser man’s idea and makes it better. George Washington Carver with the invention of Peanut Butter, Elon Musk mass producing the world’s first obtainable self-driving autonomous vehicle, and some two shit company out of San Francisco called juul labs giving my generation a device that made us panic every once in a while because a friend of a friend of a friend got popcorn lung and communicated like R2D2. We knew long-term that it was stressing our lungs with the efficacy of a Dairy Queen franchise owner giving a single Mom the graveyard shift, but we didn’t care. Some of your more hardo friends were too toxically masculine to admit that after three beers, it felt better than watching Lela Star in a hotel room alone, but just like Tik Tok, everyone eventually faltered.
Juul made so much that for Christmas 2018, each employee got a 1.3 million dollar bonus. The world was different then. White women were just starting to tell people who looked like me that they hated them, gas was low, and the only people wearing masks were spending their vacation at Time Square. It was a time when Q was just a letter in the alphabet, and David Hogg was supposed to be the next big thing. As Juul leaves the shelves and we enter a recession, I have a message to the FDA:
Hitler took the disposables, Stalin took the disposables, Mao took the disposables, Fidel Castro took the disposables, Hugo Chavez took the disposables, and I’m here to tell you…1776 will commence again if you try to take our Hyde Bars.