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Winston LC: Low-Carb Cigarette
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WINSTON-SALEM, North Carolina - Hoping to bolster flagging sales of its beleaguered product, RJ Reynolds announced Thursday that it would begin limited test marketing of a low-carb cigarette. "Of course, low-carb doesn't mean a healthy cigarette, cigarette smoke is still poisonous, still shouldn't smoke if you're pregnant, yada, yada, yada, but if you're going to smoke anyway, you might as well do it the Atkins-Approved way!" said Marketing Director Keith Dunn.

"There couldn't be a bigger non-issue."
-- Tiffany McElheny, anti-tobacco lobbyist
"The carbs in a typical cigarette are carried in the paper, not the tobacco," explained RJR researcher Thor Larsnedll, "So our task was to develop papers that have the same crisp crinkle as normal papers, but without the carbs. It was daunting, but we believe our solution is the best compromise." Reports indicate that the Winston LC papers have 1/4 the carbohydrates of a Marlboro.

"There couldn't be a bigger non-issue. Low-carb? What about sugar? They're probably low on that, too. Or watermelon? I guess my point is that there's so little to start with, what difference does it make to reduce it?" asked anti-tobacco lobbyist Tiffany McElheny, "I wonder how much poison they could have worked out of the mix if they had concentrated their efforts on that, instead of this fad-driven frivolity!"

RJR may have stepped prematurely into the Atkins world. "My late husband didn't smoke a day in his life," said Charles Atkins' widow, and now director of the Atkins Approved Program(r), "And I'm certain he wouldn't want his name -- associated with health and fitness the world over -- used to hawk those coffin nails." Mrs. Atkins has asked for a temporary injunction barring RJR from selling the cigarettes with the Atkins Approved label, and is suing the company for damages to the Atkins reputation.

"We're just trying to make a cigarette that the health-conscious public can enjoy, too," lamented Dunn, "Is that such a bad thing?"
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