Skip to main content

Apparently This Matters: Anti-smoking head cage

A man tried to offer me a cigarette. I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice chianti.
A man tried to offer me a cigarette. I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice chianti.
  • A man in Turkey built a copper-wire head cage to keep himself from smoking
  • Ibrahim Yucel had a 2-pack-a-day cigarette habit
  • His wife and daughter are the only ones with a key to unlock the cage
  • A video detailing his master plan recently surfaced on YouTube

Editor's note: Each week in "Apparently This Matters," CNN's Jarrett Bellini applies his warped sensibilities to trending topics in social media and random items of interest on the Web.

(CNN) -- We all have bad habits. Nobody's perfect. Especially the booger eaters.

Most everyone will agree that one of the very worst habits -- if not THE worst habit -- is cigarette smoking. Because, really, as far as poor life choices go, it's right up there with setting your DVR for "Two and a Half Men."

Nothing good can come from it.

But one horribly addicted man in Turkey is determined to quit, and he's taking his efforts to a hilarious new level. Because, after 26 years of cigarettes, Ibrahim Yucel has decided to encase his entire head in a metal cage.

"Apparently This Matters" Is Jarrett Bellini's weekly (and somewhat random) look at social-media trends.

And, hell, it might just work.

Though, generally speaking, that kind of self-imposed personal torture is usually best reserved for adventurous bedroom shenanigans with shady (yet willing) people you meet on Craigslist.

So I've heard.

But Yucel is serious about kicking his two-pack-a-day habit, and, as a last-ditch effort, it's all come down to the metal head cage. Which has now gone somewhat viral.

A video detailing his master plan recently surfaced on YouTube, and amazed viewers got to watch Yucel's wife literally lock him in for the day before he headed off to work. Which, despite his positive, health-conscious intentions, is a terribly misguided decision.

As someone who had to wear orthodontic headgear as a kid, I can assure you there's no glory being seen in public looking like Hannibal Lecter.

But our hero doesn't seem to care, and perhaps this low-tech solution IS the solution.

Amazingly, Yucel created the device all by himself using 130 feet of copper wire. Which, on the down side, means if he ever wears it into the wrong neighborhood, it'll be gone in less than 10 minutes.

"Come on!"

But, until then the cage, which has only two keys that are kept by his wife and daughter, should prevent him from getting cigarettes up to his mouth, while providing just enough room for sliding in crackers and a flattened drinking straw.

Yucel is motivated by the memory of his father, who died of lung cancer, and I applaud the man for trying to quit. I wish more of you would do the same.

Not so much because I care about your health, but because my biggest pet peeve in life is when people throw their butts on the ground. It drives me crazy.

Unfortunately, even the kindest, most law-abiding citizens do it.

Apparently, at some point in history a bunch of old dudes got together to make the rules of life and officially agreed that, for whatever reason, this would not be considered litter.

"Beer bottles?"


"Fast-food wrappers?"


"Hey, what about cigarette butts?"

"Shut up, Dan."

To me, tossing butts on the ground is a habit almost as bad as actually smoking. It's rude. It's unsightly. And it's definitely worse than booger eating.

Fortunately, though, the majority of personal bad habits are rather innocent and don't have any real negative impact on society as a whole. For instance, I drink waaay too much Diet Coke, and none of you are any worse off because of it.

Save for my distracted co-workers who sit near the men's room.

"Hi. Me again."

Sadly, there are some habits that are so bad to the point where they don't even technically qualify as habits. For example, setting things on fire really shouldn't be "your thing."

"Good grief, Wayne. You gotta stop doing that."

"I know, right?"

But smoking is still pretty bad.

So, if you're not interested in donning Yucel's giant metal cage, and if the patch and the gum aren't working, I know of only one other sure-fire way to quit: Move to Sydney, Australia.

Never in my life have I seen cigarettes so expensive, where bumming one on the streets is basically like asking a stranger to pay your next mortgage bill.

Mind you, I'm not a smoker. But when I visit a foreign city I find you can often get a pulse for the general cost of living by how much they charge for beer and cigarettes.

And, at least from my travels, that's about as bad as I've seen it.

So, go to Australia, and I promise you'll be well on your way to better health. Unless, of course, you simply get killed just by virtue of being in that country.

Fun fact: Nine out of ten things in Australia are venomous. Including most office supplies.

But if all your foreign travel money is being spent on cigarettes in the first place, maybe you should settle for Yucel's giant metal cage. Even if it doesn't work, at least you'll still have it for the next time you browse Craigslist. And that can be fun.

So I've heard.

Follow Jarrett Bellini on Twitter.

Part of complete coverage on
Apparently This Matters...
October 10, 2014 -- Updated 2214 GMT (0614 HKT)
I vaguely recall Pizza Hut's Book It elementary school reading incentive program. Though, to be fair, I vaguely remember what I had for breakfast.
September 26, 2014 -- Updated 2337 GMT (0737 HKT)
It took a lot of effort for Leo Bonten to turn his amputated leg into a fully functional lamp. For starters, he had to break the damn thing in a freak kiddie pool accident.
September 20, 2014 -- Updated 0022 GMT (0822 HKT)
If you asked me -- and God knows nobody has -- I would have to guess that never in the history of humankind has anyone ever actually slipped on a banana peel.
September 12, 2014 -- Updated 2223 GMT (0623 HKT)
I'm a napper.
September 8, 2014 -- Updated 1244 GMT (2044 HKT)
Since the beginning of time, man has looked up into the cosmos at those shiny, twinkling stars and thought, "I wonder if lizards would do each other up there?"
August 23, 2014 -- Updated 1528 GMT (2328 HKT)
We all have weird, irrational concerns.
August 18, 2014 -- Updated 0225 GMT (1025 HKT)
"What does this thing do?"
August 8, 2014 -- Updated 1748 GMT (0148 HKT)
Despite all the political tension in Crimea, it's nice to know things are still safe enough at the zoo for a zebra to get it on with a donkey.
August 2, 2014 -- Updated 0141 GMT (0941 HKT)
Justin Sylvester's wife is pregnant. With a baby.
July 27, 2014 -- Updated 0010 GMT (0810 HKT)
There's a famous scene in the movie "Titanic" where Rose turns to Jack and says, "I want you to draw me like one of your French girls."
July 18, 2014 -- Updated 2015 GMT (0415 HKT)
For several months in 2003, I did the whole European backpacker thing. Which is to say I've seen nearly every cathedral within 1,000 square miles of the Danube.
July 11, 2014 -- Updated 1917 GMT (0317 HKT)
The other day I saw a death metal band hanging out by their tour van in the parking lot behind a club. They were all dressed in black, and may or may not have been working on lyrics to a new song about fire and lamb meat.
June 23, 2014 -- Updated 1305 GMT (2105 HKT)
There are two good reasons to own a giant trampoline.
June 13, 2014 -- Updated 2251 GMT (0651 HKT)
I would love to say my dog is intellectually qualified to be a service animal. But he's not. There's barely enough brainpower there to be a lamp.
June 8, 2014 -- Updated 1523 GMT (2323 HKT)
I've never really needed an extra ear.
June 4, 2014 -- Updated 2032 GMT (0432 HKT)
I never actually caught a glimpse of the Tooth Fairy when I was young, but she was definitely real and in cahoots with my mom. This, due to the fact that I never woke up to find a Nintendo.
May 23, 2014 -- Updated 1957 GMT (0357 HKT)
Have you ever seen a man running in a marathon, bleeding from his nipples?
May 16, 2014 -- Updated 1952 GMT (0352 HKT)
Brace yourselves, because this week's story is about sperm and poop.