“Count the cards
strewn and abandoned
like desperate thoughts that flash
by faster than the lines on the road
on yet another 34.5 miles to work.

Count the smoke strands
curling and abandoned
as they drift upwards
into seas
of a never ending story
told in bars and living rooms
held by calloused fingers.

Count the circles
incomplete and abandoned
left by sleepless nights and early
mornings of good bad and too bitter coffee
within arms reach around
the cheaply varnished table.

Count the days
of life spent wasting away
doing the same routine
just so you can keep going.

Count the childhood dreams
whimsically smiled at and left behind
in crayons, glue sticks and notes
folded just so.

Then count the smiles
on faces of new dreams
new futures
new faces
and know that everyday you give
is given to them”

Ryan Avery

Smoking Facts and Tobacco Statistics

Tobacco offers us a life of slavery, a host of chronic, debilitating illnesses and ultimately death. And think about it: We pay big bucks for those "benefits." Sad, but true.

If you're a smoker wishing you could quit, make your mind up to dig your heels in and do the work necessary to get this monkey off your back now. You'll never regret it.

Smokers tell themselves lies that allow them to smoke with some level of comfort. They say they have time to quit...that cancer doesn't run in their family...that they can quit any time they want to...that the bad things happen to other people. And because smoking is typically a slow killer, those lies support the framework of their wall of denial for years and years.

Eventually though, most smokers find that the wall begins to crumble, and bit by bit, smoking becomes a fearful, anxious activity. This is when most smokers start seriously thinking about how they might find a way to quit smoking for good.

A crucial step in the recovery process from nicotine addiction involves breaking through that wall of denial to put smoking in the proper light.

If you're thinking that it's time to quit smoking, or have just quit and need some motivation to keep going, use the smoking facts below to fuel the fire in your belly that will help you beat your smoking habit, once and for all.

1) There are 1.1 billion smokers in the world today, and if current trends continue, that number is expected to increase to 1.6 billion by the year 2025.

2) China is home to 300 million smokers who consume approximately 1.7 trillion cigarettes a year, or 3 million cigarettes a minute.

3) Worldwide, approximately 10 million cigarettes are purchased a minute, 15 billion are sold each day, and upwards of 5 trillion are produced and used on an annual basis.

4) A typical manufactured cigarette contains approximately 8 or 9 milligrams of nicotine, while the nicotine content of a cigar is 100 to 200 milligrams, with some as high as 400 milligrams.

5) There is enough nicotine in four or five cigarettes to kill an average adult if ingested whole. Most smokers take in only one or two milligrams of nicotine per cigarette however, with the remainder being burned off.

6) Ambergris, otherwise known as whale vomit is one of the hundreds of possible additives used in manufactured cigarettes.

7) Benzene is a known cause of acute myeloid leukemia, and cigarette smoke is a major source of benzene exposure. Among U.S. smokers, 90 percent of benzene exposures come from cigarettes.

8) Radioactive lead and polonium are both present in low levels in cigarette smoke.

9) Hydrogen cyanide, one of the toxic byproducts present in cigarette smoke, was used as a genocidal chemical agent during World War II.

10) Secondhand smoke contains more than 50 cancer-causing chemical compounds, 11 of which are known to be Group 1 carcinogens.

11) The smoke from a smoldering cigarette often contains higher concentrations of the toxins found in cigarette smoke than exhaled smoke does.

12) Kids are still picking up smoking at the alarming rate of 3,000 a day in the U.S., and 80,000 to 100,000 a day worldwide.

13) Worldwide, one in five teens age 13 to 15 smoke cigarettes.

14) Approximately one quarter of the youth alive in the Western Pacific Region (East Asia and the Pacific) today will die from tobacco use.

15) Half of all long-term smokers will die a tobacco-related death.

16) Every eight seconds, a human life is lost to tobacco use somewhere in the world. That translates to approximately 5 million deaths annually.

17) Tobacco use is expected to claim one billion lives this century unless serious anti-smoking efforts are made on a global level.


WHO/WPRO - Smoking Statistics 28 May 2002. World Health Organization.
Cigarette Litter - How Many? Clean Virginia Waterways - Longwood University.
Cigarette Litter - Biodegradable? Clean Virginia Waterways - Longwood University.
The Health Consequences of Smoking: A Report of the Surgeon General 2004. Dept. of Health and Human Resources - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Nicotine - IDLH Documentation 16 August 1996. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Radioactive Cigarettes 02 April 1980. Tobacco Documents Online.
The Health Consequences of Involuntary Exposure to Tobacco Smoke: A Report of the Surgeon Generals 04 Jan 2007. U.S. Dept of Health and Human Services.

The New Model

When I think about Twitter these days I have come to understand that I'm dealing with people who create ideas, it has become so clear to me how every single one of us out there (Twitter made that so clear to me) every one of us can create and spread an idea which in fact has a lot behind it. I want to argue that we live through at a key moment of a change in the way ideas are created, spread and implemented.
Things started with the idea of THE FACTORY. Having a factory would create change and eventually change the world around you. Then we went to the TV idea. If you could get on TV enough times, and buy enough advertising space, you could win a whole lot (from recognition, to exposure and money...)

But these two previous ways have become obsolete. A new model of leadership in business and life has set itself as a new lifestyle and social dynamic develops. This new form of leadership is based on the fact that we make change by leading and not by using money, or power to lever a system.

The Factory Cycle:
Henry Ford comes up with a really cool idea which enables him to hire men who used to get paid 50 cents a day and pay them five dollars a day. This way, he has a useful factory which eventually lets him build a lot of cars, pave a lot of new roads (including opening more job opportunities). He created a lot of change and changed the image of a whole country.
The essence of this is: Cheaper labor Vs. faster machines.
The problem? Running out of both.

The Television/Advertising Cycle:
From the previous cycle develops another by taking an idea, pushing it on the world. This way, there's a better mousetrap, a smarter hook. In this system, if the person can just get enough money to tell enough people, he would sell enough. And you can build an entire industry on that.
This model requires you to act like the king and that you are in charge. And you're going to tell people what to do next. This method, mass marketing, requires average ideas, because you're going to the masses, and plenty of ads. As spammers we tried to hypnotize everyone into buying our idea but unfortunately it doesn't work so well anymore.
The New Model
Today, there's a new model and it's about leading and connecting people and ideas and people wanted this ever since...well...forever. Today, thanks to the explosion of mass media and social platforms, groups of interconnected, "linked and informed" people are all over the globe.
The internet created what experts are calling "silos of interest" people who are connected according to their interests. From religious online forums to media people connected via Twitter, the point is today you can search for your interest online, find the people like you, connect and go somewhere with that.
And it turns out that it's these silos, these groups, not money, not factories, that can change our world, that can change politics, that can align large numbers of people. This is not because you force them to do something against their will but because they wanted to connect.

So, the idea you create, the product you create, the movement you create isn't for everyone. It's not a mass thing. That's not what this is about it's about finding the true believers. The Beatles did not invent teenagers, they just decided to lead them. Most leadership is about finding a group that's disconnected but already has a yearning for something and giving it to them.
A leader is someone who will abide by the status quo, who will look at a certain situation and decide that he will not abide by it, and will not be a follower. Leaders challenge the status quo, they build a culture. They have curiosity about people and society and they're asking questions.

Every state you're in is a certain answer to a "question" you asked wether directly or indirectly.
What questions are you asking? Where do you want to lead?