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One Joint, Hold the maggots

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OK, kids, what's it gonna be? Would you rather go to school naked or eat a maggot-filled pie?

A group of teens ponder the question as they pass a joint around a circle. But while they may seem inspired by an altered state, these kids are passing the joint without smoking it.

"It's OK to pass" is the message of this ad from the Partnership for a Drug Free America. Shot in Los Angeles and directed by Francis Lawrence of David Naylor & Associates in Hollywood, it focuses its anti-marijuana message at kids ages 11-13.

The goal is "subtle storytelling," which explains why the joint is barely recognizable and the kids say nothing about it, according to Bill Wosar, associate creative director at ad agency Christy MacDougall Mitchell in New York.

The ad is aimed at the same group that watches music videos, said Law rence, who has directed videos for Jennifer Lopez, Ricky Martin and the Backstreet Boys.

It is running through early April on MTV and during such programs as Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Dawson's Creek and Temptation Island, the last of which Wosar described as "sneaky placement." "You know they watch it," he said.