There was a time when teen smoking was the ultimate for any bad boy (or girl), which of course led to a lifetime of addiction. The good news is that the teen smoking rates, and adult rates, have been dwindling in recent years. This is in part due to the influx and popularity of e-cigarettes which have been touted as a great tool to wean smokers off of their addiction. It’s safer with less nicotine, zero smoke and tar, and smokers don’t get the death stare from passerby who want no part of that second-hand nonsense. However, leave it to teenagers to come up with a brand new “trend” that’s worrying parents across the nation.
It’s rumored that teens have taken to smoking coffee beans, nicknamed caffeine sticks, but is this actually true? Some critics think it’s a made up urban legend considering the rumors started suddenly. However, what’s most telling according to many doubters is that there’s no social media presence about this trend, and that’s a dead giveaway since SM platforms are a teens’ bread and butter. There are no Facebook pages for it, no Tweets, and basically nobody but worried adults are talking about it.
The rumors started circling on March 31, 2014 just one day before the biggest prank day of the year with parents gossiping about “bean heads.” While the talks began online in parenting forums, there remains not a peep from beloved social media sites such as Instagram (in other words, there are no selfies of teens lighting up their coffee stick). Coffee smoking talks began on the radio, and since then numerous websites have engaged in this telephone game with absolutely no concrete evidence. Have teens finally figured out they shouldn’t share the dangerous and stupid things they’re doing on social media?
That’s highly unlikely, and the more plausible case is that one isolated incident, most likely in Las Vegas according to the primary source, has spread across the country. The Las Vegas incident was reported locally, and it’s common for local affiliates to report on just about anything that happens since they’re thirsty for stories. There have been a few jokes on Reddit and mentions on Facebook flippantly, but no serious posts about bean smoking being an actual “thing.”
Beware the bean heads
If you’re to believe any of these supposed “reports,” the teen users are gobbling these sticks up like candy. Some news stations have reported that you might experience hallucinations if you try it, although there’s no telling where that warning came from. You may or may not get a caffeine high, and don’t count on the alluring aroma of roasted coffee beans to translate well into smoke form. Basically, you’d be better off trying an e-cigarette if you’re of legal age or, better yet, simply brewing a cup of coffee or munching on coffee beans.
A few more people may try this trend if jokes begin to spread, but just like any other vice, people (even teens) know how they like their coffee. For the most part, it’s in a cup or covered in chocolate and not wrapped in rolling paper.