Thursday, July 27, 2017

Ashes to Ashes

The Marlboro Man is one of the most iconic and successful marketing campaigns ever but there's always been one huge flaw.  Rugged, grizzled types pose for magazine ads and drip testosterone as they take a pull from a Marlboro cigarette and they cause sales to skyrocket but they are frequently replaced.  Not necessarily to freshen up the campaign but because smoking tends to kill people.


So when it comes to tracking down gravestones of famous people, it shouldn't be too surprising to find several belonging to former Marlboro Men.  But in the "Bull Rider's Reprieve" section of the Mt. Olive Cemetery in Hugo, Oklahoma you can find a grave of a Marlboro Man who is still alive:


Oklahoma cowboy Max "Turk" Robinson got the job as the Marlboro Man just by having the right look.  He was a longtime staple of the rodeo circuit when a photo of him on a horse was published and got the tobacco company's attention.  He had the exact look of an authentic cowboy because he was one.  But he has one unique characteristic that other Marlboro Men don't...which may be why his grave is empty...


He doesn't smoke.  I guess that would be kind of like if Colonel Sanders was a vegetarian but you can't argue with results.  I guess clean living and the cowboy lifestyle has a lot going for it. 

Turk is still somewhat active in the rodeo community and still does appearances at Oklahoma casinos and in parades so maybe you can get to meet him someday and take a picture with him not smoking.  So here's to your health!


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