The genus Selfie of the family Narcissus contains many species. There is the Selfie brunch and the Selfie drunk. There's the Selfie nail game, the Selfie duck face, and the Selfie humblebrag. But naturalists have only just begun to study a fascinating new breed, the fruit of a tremendous technological innovation in the field of getting baked: the Selfie vape.
If you search Instagram for the hashtag vape (short for vaporizer), you'll find almost a million photos and videos. Vine doesn't display the number of videos per tag, but if you search for #vapelife or #vapelyfe or #vapegod or #vapeporn or #girlswhovape or #cloudchasing, you can scroll for a long time before your supply is cashed. Similar videos have been spotted in the elfin forests of Tumblr and even the domesticated plains of Pinterest.
Vaporizers are the newest frontier in consumer smoking products. Prized for their ability to release the active ingredients from "plant material," while staying under temperatures that could cause combustion, vapes provide an easy, compact, flame-free method of smoking tobacco, e-juice, or the kind of herb Amanda Bynes might chuck from a 36th floor window. While the FDA wonders if quality control is "substandard or non-existent," manufacturers are competing to make the inhalation devices evermore stealthy and sleek. (All the while hawking the products with oblique marketing that never mentions marijuana.)
Social media fiends, however, continue to blow smoke in the face of discretion.
Even before this weekend's high holy day, anthropological evidence of #vapenation already surfaced on the popular page for Instagram and Vine—and from the same legally questionable cohort that used to post on YouTube. The most widely shared posts show off various kinds of vape tricks, like a Ghost, Dragon, or Tornado. The repertoire starts where Snoop and Wiz Khalifa left off and then gets much more Skrillex.
The Tornado begins when the native vaper emits a funnel of smoke onto the table, but the ritual requires an upward arm gesture to be complete.
The Ghost appears towards the end here, when she exhales and then quickly inhales back a thin apparition of smoke.
The act of exhaling from both sides of one's mouth and both nostrils simultaneously is referred to as a Dragon. The vapor extends in four directions, like a peacock fanning its feathers:
The French Inhale
Just before the redheaded vaper blows a kiss, she displays your standard French Inhale:
The Atomic Bomb
To mimic an Atomic Bomb, members of the tribe produce a larger ring of smoke, followed by a smaller one resulting in a mushroom cloud effect.
Vaporizers add a P-13 element to a youthful pastime like blowing bubbles.
This rapid-fire release is commonly known as Cheerios.
It's rare to witness such robust succession of O's. Here is a more typical selfie from a vaping male:
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