ANSWERS: 7
  • The phrase "blowing smoke", meaning to deceive and/or distract, has been around for years. The "up ones ass" part is a fairly new addition. The origin of the "blowing smoke" part is from stage magic, where magicians use smoke to hide their actions or to distract the audience. So if your actions were meant to distract or deceive, you were said to be blowing smoke. Of course, anyone who studies American slang knows that pretty much any phrase can be improved by adding a reference to someones ass, so I suppose it's inevitable the that is where the smoke would eventually be blown.
  • where did "petered out" come from
  • In the 1700's a new method of resuscitation was used. This "new" procedure involved blowing tobacco smoke into the victim's rectum. According to the literature, smoke was first blown into an animal bladder, then into the victim's rectum. It was used successfully by North American Indians and American colonists an introduced in England in 1767. It was used until the mid 1800's.
  • In the 18th Century it was seriously believed that under certain conditions blowing tobacco smoke into the rectum of an apparently dead person could resuscitate them. In the Science Museum in London there is a Tobacco Resuscitator machine dated 1774. Check it out.
  • ORIGIN: The Tobacco Smoke Enema (1750's-1810's) was used to infuse tobacco smoke into a patient's rectum for various medical purposes, primarily to resuscitation of drowning victims. A rectal tube inserted into the anus was connected to a fumigator and bellows that forced the smoke into the rectum. The warmth of the smoke was thought to promote respiration, but doubts about the credibility of tobacco enemas led to the popular phrase "blow smoke up one's ass." Search on "tobacco smoke enema" for illustrations of the apparatus.
  • They thought blowing smoke up a drowning victims ass wouuld restore respiration.
  • Tobacco Smoke Enema (1750-1810) The tobacco enema was used to infuse tobacco smoke into a patient’s rectum for various medical purposes, primarily the resuscitation of drowning victims. A rectal tube inserted into the anus was connected to a fumigator and bellows that forced the smoke towards the rectum. The warmth of the smoke was thought to promote respiration, but doubts about the credibility of tobacco enemas led to its disappearence and the popular phrase “blow smoke up one’s ass.”

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