Blog Archives

Cookies!

Cookie Monster

Cookie Monster would be so proud! (Jim Henson/Buehler Moving Companies)

Any salesperson worth their salt understands that the first step towards high sales and even higher profits is location, location, location.

And apparently, the Girl Scouts know this, too.

One little girl in Oregon decided to maximize her profits by selling Girl Scout cookies outside the one place guaranteed to drive her business upwards: a marijuana dispensary.

Accompanied by her aunt, she set up shop outside Portland’s Foster Buds Marijuana Dispensary last weekend, intent on making enough money to fund horse camp over the summer. And needless to say, she easily surpassed her goal.

“The Girl Scouts organization said they don’t condone this, but it’s not against the rules,” her aunt told KATU-TV.

The dispensary even got in on the action by offering cookie buyers a discount on a “Girl Scout Cookies” strain of pot they sell. Of course, the Girl Scouts of the USA aren’t very happy about the trademark infringement, but this is nothing new for marijuana dispensaries, some of which market a “Thin Mints” strain of weed, as well.

Kudos to this young lady for her shrewd marketing skills, though!

A Grand Time

Grandma-rijuana (YouTube/Cut.com)

Grandma-rijuana (YouTube/Cut.com)

The people from Cut.com did something hilarious recently: they asked three grandmothers in Washington State to smoke marijuana for the first time.

As I’m sure you know, marijuana is legal for recreational use there, so no laws were broken.

The YouTube video of these brave women can be seen HERE and I assure you, it’s worth checking out. I hope you enjoy it!

Pot Pops

Lollipops are supposed to make people happy on their own! (Grumpes)

Bringing treats to school for your friends and classmates isn’t a new concept. Both students and parents seem to be trained to do this from elementary school and beyond. Of course, the kind of treats you bring can make a huge difference, as one girl from Enfield High School in Connecticut just learned.

On Monday, the girl-in-question supplied numerous students with lollipops—only these were both sweet and psychedelic.

They were pot pops—lollipops laced with THC, the active psychotropic ingredient in marijuana.

Apparently, the girl ordered the lollipops from California by mail and distributed them to her friends. Unfortunately, some of the pops reached other, unintended targets, including a 16-year-old girl who was hospitalized Monday night. Thankfully, she should be fine.

Of course, the pot pop delivery person may not be so lucky. Since she’s a juvenile, she will not be arrested and will instead be referred to the juvenile court system. No word yet on her punishment, but one thing is for certain: she won’t look at lollipops the same way again!

The Queen of “Twerking” Returns!

Miley blazes up at the EMAs (MTV)

Miley blazes up at the EMAs (MTV)

On Sunday, the 2013 MTV Europe Video Awards ceremony was held in Amsterdam, Netherlands. And at the top of the booking list was none other than the Queen of Twerking—and controversy—herself: Miley Cyrus.

True to form, this two-time performer for the night once again caused a stir when she walked on stage to accept the Best Video award for “Wrecking Ball” and promptly lit a joint before making her acceptance speech.

Laws regarding recreational drug use are far less strict in Amsterdam, as I’m sure you know, but no one expected to see drug use on stage, much less broadcast to millions of people around the world.

Tamed down performances from Cyrus... this time (MTV)

Tamed down performances from Cyrus… this time (MTV)

Fortunately, Miley made up for it by “toning down” her performances. Instead of bumping-and-grinding with Robin Thicke while performing her hit “We Can’t Stop,” Miley opted for giant teddy bears and dancing aliens—Thicke was replaced by a “little person” in a tight latex catsuit. And though some twerking took place, it was limited only to this performance and was absent by the time she performed “Wrecking Ball.”

Either way, leave it to Miley to find some way of getting back into the news. I noticed her name being absent from the entertainment headlines lately and apparently her publicist noticed as well because now, she’s right back where she belongs: causing controversy for the whole world to see.

Oh, Miley!

Weeding Out the Lies

Dr. Gupta has changed his tune on medical weed (Animal New York)

Dr. Gupta has changed his tune on medical weed (Animal New York)

The other day as I was cruising through cyberspace, I came across an article written by Dr. Sanjay Gupta earlier this month that explained why his opinion of medicinal marijuana changed so dramatically in the last several years. For those of you unfamiliar with Gupta, he is the Chief Medical Correspondent for CNN and has always been against the idea of pot being used as treatment for medical conditions.

Recently, though, Gupta is singing a different tune, and this one supports medical marijuana wholeheartedly. In fact, the good doctor is currently working on a documentary called “Weed” that further explains his 180-degree turn on this controversial topic. And I, for one, can’t wait to see it.

For decades, I have heard the same thing most of you have likely heard: marijuana is a terrible drug that provides no real benefit and instead serves as a gateway to other, harder drugs. Since 1970—and at the bequest of the Assistant Secretary of Health at the time, Dr. Roger Egeberg—marijuana has been classified as a schedule I substance. Here’s how these types of drugs are described by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA):

“Schedule I drugs, substances or chemicals are defined as drugs with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse. Schedule I drugs are the most dangerous drugs of all the drug schedules with potentially severe psychological or physical dependence.”

Believe it or not, but the DEA ranks cannabis along with heroin, LSD, peyote and ecstasy! It’s even considered to be more dangerous than cocaine, simply because coke has been used for medicinal reasons (mostly as an anesthetic)!

Clearly, there is something wrong with this picture. Thanks to Dr. Gupta, though, I now feel as if I know much more about the conspiracy to demonize marijuana in America. Consider the man who first suggested it be classified as schedule I drug, Dr. Egeberg.

In his letter recommending the status change for weed—the same letter that resulted in this status remaining for 45 years—Dr. Egeberg stated his reasoning as follows—I underlined the most pertinent words or phrases:

“Since there is still a considerable void in our knowledge of the plant and effects of the active drug contained in it, our recommendation is that marijuana be retained within schedule 1 at least until the completion of certain studies now underway to resolve the issue.”

The root... er, weed... of all evil (Tulsa World)

The root… er, weed… of all evil (Tulsa World)

In other words, he wasn’t recommending that marijuana remain a schedule I substance. He just thought more research needed to be conducted before a truly informed decision could be made.

Unfortunately, this never happened because none of the “studies now underway” were ever completed. As disturbing as this half-ass approach was, the truth of the matter is that there existed a plethora of information on marijuana at the time, some of it dating back several decades. For instance, former New York mayor Fiorello LaGuardia commissioned a study in 1944 that found no evidence of marijuana being addictive or leading to harder drug use. More recent studies have even estimated marijuana’s dependence rate at roughly 9-10% (meaning this percentage of people who use the drug actually become dependent on it, at least in terms of psychological dependence). Compare this to dependence rates for cocaine (20%)—a schedule II drug, by the way—heroin (25%) and tobacco (30%) and it should be obvious that marijuana simply isn’t being treated fairly… and hasn’t been treated fairly for almost half a century.

But there’s more.

Consider for a moment the schedule I classification that claims marijuana has no inherent medical use. Gupta contradicted this and referred to the case of Charlotte Figi, a child in Colorado who started having unexplained seizures just after she was born. Every week, Charlotte would have roughly 300 seizures and despite being on numerous medications, nothing seemed to help. Out of desperation, her physicians recommended the use of cannabis to see what effect it might have on calming Charlotte’s brain and, consequently, reducing the rate of her seizures. Ironically enough—and after only a short time—the cannabis helped. Now Charlotte experiences only 2-3 seizures each month and no longer suffers from the cognitive impairment her more frequent seizures caused. By most respects, she is a happy and healthy child who can now enjoy a life that once seemed grim and dismal.

Charlotte Figi needs cannabis to control her seizures (Nurses Labs)

Charlotte Figi needs cannabis to control her seizures (Nurses Labs)

Am I to believe these kinds of benefits should be ignored simply because someone in the 1970s suggested marijuana be classified as illegal and dangerous? Is it possible the large tobacco companies helped fuel the fear that pushed consumers away from marijuana and back to their leafy product instead?

I’m likely getting a little ahead of myself. And it should be obvious that this subject gets me fired up—not because I think we should all become potheads, but because there are people suffering who could be helped once we get our collective heads out of our asses.

During his research, Gupta also examined the medical literature regarding marijuana and went back as far as the 19th century. What he found was astonishing and convinced me even more that we are missing an opportunity here. Between 1840 and 1930, the majority of marijuana-related papers and journal articles focused on the many benefits of this plant. Ever since, however, the majority of the research has focused instead on marijuana’s dangers and adverse effects—a quick search of the U.S. National Library of Medicine brought up more than 20,000 results for Gupta, most of which examined the drug’s harmful qualities. This means that of all the American studies into marijuana, only 6% examine its positive traits.

Does this really paint a clear picture of the drug? I think not.

Like Gupta, I agree that more research should be done on marijuana and a more informed decision should be made, especially with regard to its medicinal qualities. Researchers all over the world have been studying it for years and continue to do so. Some are even making serious progress. For example, scientists in Israel and Spain are trying to determine if cannabis could be used to fight cancer, while others are looking into it as a potential treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder, a growing problem among our military personnel.

The problem is that to study marijuana in the United States, you have to either break the law—marijuana is illegal, after all—or go through the proper government channels, which can be equally challenging. You also have to get approval and, sadly, this process is skewed as well. Approval for an anti-cancer drug study may need the approval of the National Cancer Institute, for instance, but the same is not true for marijuana. Instead of passing through some kind of legitimate medical board or organization, marijuana studies must seek the approval of the National Institute on Drug Abuse—the very organization whose mission it is to help demonize weed!

A medical marijuana card for California (Contra Costa Health)

A medical marijuana card for California (Contra Costa Health)

Again, there is something seriously wrong with this picture.

The good news is that as of this moment, residents of 20 states—and the District of Columbia—have voted to approve medical marijuana use, and a number of additional states will vote on it soon. Washington State even made recreational marijuana use legal and it seems as if Colorado could be next in line. In other words—and undoubtedly to the delight of Dr. Gupta—the times they are a changing.

They just need to change much, much faster… and without all the government paranoia, fear-mongering and—most of all—bullshit. Only then can we help the people who truly need it. And only then can we finally end their suffering.

Cops Cure “The Munchies”

Cure the Munchies, learn the law (Seattle PD/Twitter)

Cure the Munchies, learn the law (Seattle PD/Twitter)

There’s an old adage that says, “If you can’t beat them, join them.” And this past weekend in Seattle, Washington, police officers did just that.

The city was celebrating Hempfest, its annual festival of all things marijuana and a mecca for bong smokers and joint-toting “heads” everywhere. This year, however, things were quite different: Washington State voted to legalize recreational marijuana use in 2012. This meant the cops who used to spend their time busting potheads had to find something more constructive to do with their time… and they certainly did that.

In an effort to better explain the new rules surrounding recreational marijuana use—and to ensure people actually paid attention to them—the Seattle Police Department used a delivery method that would be much more appealing to people suffering from “The Munchies.”

“We knew if we did leaflets, it would turn into litter,” Sgt. Sean Whitcomb explained. “We wanted people to be able to access the information. It’s actually fun to read. We wanted to do it in a way that is deliberately ironic.”

So you know what they did? Seattle police printed their rules onto stickers, slapped the stickers onto individually sized bags of Doritos snack chips and handed them out to passersby at Hempfest. Each bag contained some “dos” and “don’ts” and incorporated something normally not associated with cops: humor.

Check it out.

Seattle Police created a hilarious sticker! (Seattle PD/Twitter)

Seattle Police created a hilarious sticker! (Seattle PD/Twitter)

Alas, it all had to end sometime (Seattle PD/Twitter)

Alas, it all had to end sometime (Seattle PD/Twitter)

Needless to say, stoned partygoers enjoyed the Doritos so much that they exhausted the cops’ supply—1,000 bags of chips gone in less than 30 minutes. It definitely sounds like “The Munchies” were in full effect to me!

In all, the Seattle Police Department paid less than $300 for snacks that reached a thousand people—and hopefully a message that reached them, as well. What came to be known as Operation Orange Fingers was a huge success, and one I hope becomes a tradition in coming years.

After all, any time cops and potheads can peacefully coexist, I am all for it!

Welcome to Tweeder?

The ignorance of some of our fellow brothers and sisters never ceases to amaze me.

In what had to be one of the dumbest moves ever, a worker in a Toronto auto repair shop with a need for some good weed decided to search for some… on Twitter!

Check it out.

Is Tweeding a real thing? (Twitter)

Is Tweeding a real thing? (Twitter)

Unfortunately for this misguided jackass, the York Regional Police caught wind of his request—which obviously went viral—and responded with a tweet of their own.

Didn't anyone tell him the cops use Twitter, too? (York Regional Police/Twitter)

Didn’t anyone tell him the cops use Twitter, too? (York Regional Police/Twitter)

And they didn’t stop there.

Since this pot-smoking genius was dumb enough to include both the name of the car shop and its address, an officer decided to forward his tweet to someone who would likely be interested to learn what his employee was up to: a member of the shop’s board of directors.

The people at Mr. Lube wasted no time in handling Mr. Bong (Twitter)

The people at Mr. Lube wasted no time in handling Mr. Bong (Twitter)

At this point, Cheech’s brain must have started functioning because he immediately tried to cover his tracks, once again on Twitter.

“Never knew weed smokers are more wanted in society than shooters & rapists,” his first tweet read. “Big smh to all of y’all.”

This obviously didn’t satisfy him because his second tweet shifted from defiance to denial: “People really think I’m serious with my tweets? MANNNNN.”

Shortly after his second tweet, our man-with-a-joint-in-his-hand decided to come clean, much like a child who lies and lies until the truth finally comes out and lies no longer work: “Can’t lie, stupid move but would y’all have noticed that tweet if [York Regional Police] didn’t retweet it?”

Sadly, it was too late and the damage had already been done—his last tweet read simply “Just got the call of termination.”

And then he deleted his Twitter account, which was undoubtedly his smartest move in this whole ridiculous situation.

Of course, the story doesn’t end there. York Police followed up with two more tweets, both of which should be considered by anyone hoping to solicit illegal drugs through social networking.

Duh! That's what cops do! (York Regional Police/Twitter)

Duh! That’s what cops do! (York Regional Police/Twitter)

Need weed? Stay the hell off of Twitter! (York Regional Police/Twitter)

Need weed? Stay the hell off of Twitter! (York Regional Police/Twitter)

Some people just never learn…

Pop-Up Post: The Poot Police

Bud bust by the butt (beforeitsnews.com)

The science and technology of law enforcement has evolved rapidly in the last twenty or thirty years. From the development of pepper spray and the widespread use of computers in the 1980s to the announcement from the National Academy of Sciences that DNA evidence was indeed reliable in the 1990s, law enforcement has changed and improved in an effort to keep pace with crime and more tech-savvy criminals. And personally, I think they’ve done a pretty good job.

The future of law enforcement—at least that bit the public is allowed to see—promises to be even more amazing: scent and sound-based deterrents (for some stinky crowd control); metabolic supplements to produce super-soldiers (think Captain America times thousands); unmanned drones; bullets that can perform “tricks,” like exploding above a target or tracking one from hundreds of meters away; lighter, more impenetrable body armor; microwave deterrent systems (to cook rioters from the inside until they quit raising hell); robotic exoskeletons (Robocop for real); nanotechnology (which should revolutionize almost everything); cloaking devices; and so much more.

Honestly, some of it seems like it’s straight out of a science fiction movie. And criminals better pay attention because these days—and for countless days and years to come—“getting away with it” won’t be as easy as it used to be. The cops have, or soon will have, the technology to sniff out even the most clandestine criminal activities.

Speaking of sniffing out crime, it is important to remember that sometimes nothing can compare to old-fashioned police work. Consider a recent case from Leicester, England—one that illustrates how a nose for crime can often be a cop’s most valuable piece of law enforcement equipment.

A “crack team” of three police officers were cruising around Leicester when one of them suddenly attacked his partners with an unlikely weapon: his ass. Due to a new high-protein diet designed to complement his exercise regime, the flatulent flatfoot unleashed a barrage of smelly farts upon his confined car mates, forcing them to open windows as they gasped for air. And that’s when a nose for crime finally paid off: they smelled cannabis.

It must have been a welcome change from all that “protein shake pooting” in the car, believe me.

The cops investigated and discovered a cannabis factory nearby with a crop worth almost $20,000. Not a bad bust considering it all started with a bad butt.

Any chance we can get more officers on this exercise regimen?

Up in Smoke

Weed gone bye-bye (courtesy of Kathryn Scott Osler/The Denver Post)

On November 6, 2012, an amendment to Article 18 of the Colorado state constitution passed with more than 53% support from state residents. Colorado Amendment 64 allows adults age 21 and over to use marijuana for recreational purposes. And since then, there has been a cloudy haze over the middle of the country.

Unfortunately, that haze grew even larger on Tuesday when firefighters were called to 4430 East Garfield Avenue in Denver to extinguish a blaze. Only this wasn’t a typical fire in some run-of-the-mill structure.

A marijuana growing operation was burning. And to make matters worse, all of the fortifications in place to protect the budding product—from steel doors to bricked-in windows—made it more difficult for firefighters to put out the blaze.

Eventually, though, the fire was extinguished, but it was too late to save any plants and the building itself was damaged pretty severely.

This story caught my eye for a number of reasons, which are best shared in one of my favorite formats, a bulleted list:

  • Honestly, I was surprised the fire was put out so quickly and can only assume gas masks were utilized. Otherwise, the structure likely would have burned to the ground when all the stoned firefighters dropped their hoses and went searching for food to satisfy “the munchies.”
  • The same could be said of anyone living or working within a 5-10 block radius of the fire, which amounted to little more than a huge blaze out session. Hell, even second-hand smoke could have produced a nice buzz for passersby!
  • The cause of the blaze is believed to be electrical—since grow operations use so much power—but for a minute there, I suspected one of the “farmers” left a roach burning too close to the harvest.

Denver potheads won’t be smiling for long (courtesy of http://www.costumesluck.com)

The good news is that none of my suspicions were correct. And aside from the damage to the building, the only real consequence will be the emotional toll on potheads who must now look elsewhere for their next fix.

Happy hunting, my herb-loving friends!

The “Bong” Squad

Suck it in, don’t blow it up! (courtesy of Capital Concepts)

A couple of years ago, and not long after the attacks of September 11th, I was visiting family in Washington, D.C. and had my first and only experience with terrorism.

Actually, it wasn’t so much a terrorist act as it was a misunderstanding, but you can never be too careful.

I was walking through the Holocaust Museum when suddenly, security officers locked us in and told us to stay put. Apparently, someone carrying a briefcase entered the lobby and left it sitting beside one of the benches. And from what I gathered, that person was long gone and the fear was that the briefcase may contain a bomb.

The good news is that everything worked out and nothing bad happened, unless you count the 45 minutes everyone spent looking at the same display over and over again. As I said before, though, you can never be too careful. And I’ll take caution over complacency any day.

Something similar happened in Spokane, Washington recently.

Police were called when a pedestrian noticed something strange leaning against the wall of a local business. To him, it looked like some kind of pipe bomb, so he immediately contacted the authorities.

A short time later, the Spokane Police Bomb Squad arrived on the scene to examine the crude PVC pipe device and to detonate it safely, which they did. Only later did they discover that it wasn’t a bomb at all.

It was a bong.

This means that somewhere in Spokane, there’s a stoner either wondering what he did with his bong—we all know how weed can affect memory, especially when someone is baked—or angered at the images of his bong exploding all over the local newscasts.

It’s time to find some new paraphernalia, my friend. Might I suggest something less conspicuous, like maybe rolling papers?

No one ever called the bomb squad about them!

%d bloggers like this: