Dennis Peron passed this evening. You should know about him, Newbie. Legal cannabis would not have been possible without his activism. I had the fortune of being part of a special event for vets last Veterans Day, 11/11/17 at a dispensary in San Francisco called Harvest. I delivered a meditation I teach called iRest, and Dennis dropped right into it. When we came out, he smiled at me, nodded, and winked. He told me he was a big believer in meditation. Bon Voyage, Dennis. May you soar high. 💚
KindPeoples in Santa Cruz has great edible inforgraphics!
I love this easy infographic from the brilliant brain of Elise McDonough, PR Specialist at KindPeoples in Santa Cruz. Elise is also a former Edibles Editor at High Times Magazine and the author of “The Official High Times Cookbook.”
Adding my two cents for newbies, since I’m so protective of you and want to prevent you from making the terrible mistake of overdoing it with edibles which could very well scare you off of cannabis medicine entirely because it IS NOT FUN:
*Rate symptoms before starting
*Lower and Slower! Start at 2.5mg for newbies – or for any new edible.
(While 5 – 15mg is considered a starter dose, many people do really well with microdosing.)
*Put the edible up and away in between doses, so you are NOT tempted to nibble more!
*After two hours, rate symptoms again.
*If needed, dose up another 2.5mg. As Korova says on their packaging, ‘You Can Always Take More, but You Can’t Take Less!”
*Keep your edible wrappers away from pets! If they go into your garbage, DON’T put wrappers in there. Tie them up in another bag and put them directly outside in the dumpster.
*If you get too high, remember the three things I always tell Newbies!
Be kind to your Budtender.
I know, friends, we’re all excited. Suddenly, what was verboten for many years is free to all. Well. Not free. In fact, taxes are upwards of 35% for Adult Use cannabis in California. But you get it. Freely accessible. You just might have wait in some long lines with other equally excited folks. All those throngs of excited people sift and filter down to come face to face to one person: The Budtender.
I worked until recently at Harborside, the biggest (and arguably the most famous) dispensary in the Bay Area for nearly five years — with just under two of those years spent in the role of Budtender. Under the leadership of the dynamic Steve DeAngelo, our team of Budtenders made it our collective mission to quench our own thirst for cannabis knowledge — combing the internet for, studying, and sampling (on our own time) as much cannabis as we possibly could. We shared with fellow Budtenders the knowledge we culled independently from researchers, growers and product-makers about the different cultivars of cannabis, the varying effects of cannabinoids and terpenes, products and methods of delivery — all information that is constantly evolving and changing — so that we might best serve the patient — you.
Everyone I know in the California cannabis industry has worked hard for the legitimate advancement of cannabis as medicine because we’ve experienced firsthand how effective and powerful it is. We’ve also seen — again and again — how it helps others. Everyone you’d ever see in your lifetime, we’ve seen at the counter, right in front of us, telling us their stories of struggle and heartbreak, of pain and loss. Google ‘cannabis helped my’ and watch the testimonials pile up onto the results pages. We’ve come in contact with the lot of them. It’s nearly impossible to hold that kind of space for healing on the daily and not be enduringly and seriously affected by it. Changed.
Along with the plants we’ve watched fill our gardens and line our shelves, our capacity for compassion has blossomed in ways we never imagined. The roots of this ever-evolving compassion informs our every decision — even outside of the workplace. Cannabis, in its essence, connects us to each other, helps us to empathize and try on the struggle of another, to see things from beyond the neatness of opposing views, to approach even the toughest of situations from a ground of love and respect for humankind.
And those times when we fail at the grand mission of compassion that cannabis has imprinted upon us, we suffer a greater sense of guilt than most — How we might have handled things better? How might we have been a better resource for information? How might we have tried to connect, rather than distance ourselves, from the suffering of another? How might we have exhibited more willingness to listen, observe, and, when appropriate, educate and encourage?
We share in your excitement about this brave new world, and we’re smiling right along with you — because cannabis is all about community and compassion. We’ve dreamed of this moment and we welcome newbies — whether brand new, or returning to cannabis after some time — with open arms. We know that this medicine can help everyone on the planet in some way. We. Just. Know. But there are also some things you should know about the Budtenders.
As you stand in the lines to be part of this moment in history, it’s important you know that behind the scenes, a massive reshuffling is at play in the industry to which we’ve dedicated ourselves. For several weeks now, we have witnessed a mass exodus of highly knowledgeable and trusted colleagues of quality cannabis flowers and products — victims to the new, ‘liberated’ world of Adult Use. They’ve been unable to secure funding, quality material, proper space or licensing and we’ve had to watch as it happens, helpless. These friends, many of whom were leading innovators themselves, are brokenhearted at being forced to leave their beloved industry and devastated at deserting the patients who have come to rely on them. So while we are celebrating with you, it’s important you know that the ground beneath us is giving way. Seismic changes are occurring at every level of what we’ve built upon for years. The future, while certainly open, is uncertain. This can have a dizzying effect for your Budtender.
The announcement today that Jeff Sessions had rescinded the Cole Memo — safeguards for legal cannabis businesses, employees, and users put in place by President Obama — further adds to the stress of providing safe access for new consumers, which is every Budtender’s mission.
Take this information with you when you enter the dispensary. Bring your kindness and patience. Know that the Budtenders are smiling through the challenges they are facing, because they want you to love cannabis like they do. Know that though they’ll not let on, their home lives have been affected by the madness of this massive moment in time. Know, that while they are thrilled for you, they’ve taken all these changes on their feet and their bodies are suffering under the weight of the run up to legalization and the constant rush of consumers since.
Know that the lines — at least for the time being — are unavoidable. If they’re going to trigger you, you might consider signing up for delivery. There will always be time to set foot into the dispensary, because Adult Use is now a reality. It’s all very exciting. And exhausting. With a little bit of mutual understanding, this new world will take root in wondrous ways for all of us.
May we all seek to embody the sweet gift of Compassion that cannabis bestows upon us.
CBD and THC — the Greatest Love Story. Ever.
Newbie! Meet the 1:1 Ratio!
I’d been thinking about writing a blog post about the 1:1 ratio for some time and was planning to put fingers to keys last week, but then was beset by a maleficent flu that put me down in all the worst ways. While I was aching and writhing for endless spans over three nights, a sweet riff from the beginning of a tune started playing in the back of my mind, lulling and soothing, like a cool cloth on my fevered brow.
Ding Ding…Ding Ding…Ding Ding…Ding Ding…
“One on One,” from 1983. Hall & Oates.
Let me explain: Many of you newbies say “One on One” (instead of One to One) when you talk about ratios, and it’s just another reason to love you. As I’ve mentioned before, we love everything about you, and we welcome you to the cannabis community with open arms. You’re even more endearing than you know, because when I hear you say One on One, I am transported. Suddenly, I’m a junior in high school again, swaying slowly at the Winter Dance to one of the best second verse phrasings in the history of 80s pop ballads, under a mirror ball with the shortest guy in my class. Know this, Newbie: Cannabis is like your best days at school, and we’ll never make you feel like a wallflower here.
The drum machine and sweet bass line… Ding Ding…Ding Ding…Ding Ding…Ding Ding…
When I talk about ratios, including the 1:1, I am talking about CBD to THC. Well, usually. Some product packaging still lists ratios in other, confusing ways, but the industry standard is mostly alphabetical — CBD first, then THC. That said, Newbie, just a friendly reminder to ALWAYS CHECK THE LABELS CLOSELY. This is your medicine, take a little ownership, you adorable newbie, you.
We’re so early in the game with regard to knowing how the Endocannabinoid System (ECS) works. We know that every mammal has an ECS, as does every other creature on earth. Except insects. Maybe even insects. We know that we have cannabinoid receptors all through our bodies. We know that THC locks into the CB1 receptor. We know some other more complex facts about CB receptors, too, and about endocannabinoids (cannabinoids our bodies make) as well as phytocannabinoids, (those in cannabis plants and plants like echinacea), but I’m not trying to overwhelm you with all of that delicious info. You can research more about it when and if you feel like it. Take your time!
CBD interacts with and benefits our bodies in varying ways — acting as, among other things, an anti-depressant, anti-psychotic, anti-tumoral, and neuroprotectant. CBD can also remove beta amyloid plaque, the hallmark of Alzheimer’s, from brain cells. Like THC, CBD has many different applications. But CBD works a little bit differently than THC.
CBD doesn’t lock into the CB1 receptor like THC does. Instead, according to Project CBD Director Martin Lee, “CBD changes the interface of the CB1 receptor so that THC doesn’t lock into it as well as it would normally.” What does that mean to you, Newbie? It means that when CBD and THC is taken in equal amounts, one will experience the medicinal benefits of THC without much of the euphoria (high) or dysphoria (unease) which normally accompanies THC use. Further adding to its mystery, according to Lee, “CBD interacts with over 65 targets in the body, including many non-cannabinoid receptors,” binding to some, influencing others.
Because of all this action, scientists, including Lee, refer to CBD as a promiscuous compound. While I find this label a bit unfair due to the general derogatory common usage of the term, (preferring myself to see CBD more as the quintessential flower child, loving the one it’s with and all that), I must agree. CBD slips gracefully into more varied positions than there are poses in the Kama Sutra.
Maybe I’m just a romantic stoner, but it seems to me there is no greater love affair than that which exists between CBD and THC. In the 1:1 ratio, working together as a team, there’s really no stopping these cannabinoids. Together, they might just change the world…
Here are just a few of the many, many ways THC and CBD work together:
- CBD mitigates some of the high that makes newbies afraid to try THC.
- CBD is great for quelling THC-related anxiety; if you get too high, take a little CBD!
- CBD and THC are both anti-inflammatory powerhouses.
- CBD and THC together are great for sleep — CBD calms the nervous system and THC brings relaxation and drowsiness. (CBN — the aged cannabinoid version of THC, is even more drowsy-making.)
- On a cellular level, CBD and THC both capture free radicals to mitigate oxidative damage to cells.
- Unlike many pharmaceuticals, which are experienced by the body as toxins, cannabinoids float around freely and are interpreted by the body as natural.
- Both CBD and THC can help prevent Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), taken as a prophylactic, and even directlyfollowing impact.
- In addition to altering the CB1 receptor to keep THC from locking into it, CBD also inhibits the enzyme that breaks down THC in the liver. THC may recirculate and re-dock in a CB1 receptor, increasing the duration of effectiveness, (which is why a high may be felt some time later when using a 1:1).
- CBD decreases cravings for opioids and THC help is a powerful analgesic. This is a winning combination to help fight the opioid crisis.
How should you get your One on One…? In stereo, preferably somewhere where you’ll be comfortable dancing along. I’m sorry, Newbie, I can’t get that song off my mind. Here’s a link, in case you love it like I do.
Inhaling is definitely the fastest-acting method of delivery, and you can get excellent, clean delivery of cannabinoid medicine vaporizing flower with a good handheld or table-top vaporizer. I do NOT condone the use of vape pens, as I cannot attest to their safety), and generally, they do not feel good in my body. Please do your due diligence on any method of delivery, and listen to YOUR body, Newbie.
My vote is increasingly for sublingual tinctures as method of delivery preference — for you, Newbie, as well as for myself. For anyone, in fact. Sublingual delivery runs a very close second to inhaling for quick feedback and is definitely in first place for putting the user in the driver seat. Sold in bottles with droppers, tinctures provide the patient the most control over effects, which is what every experimenting newbie wants. With a tincture and a little bit of free time, you’ll find your minimal effective dose pretty quickly and painlessly.
I know I’ve said this before, but just a reminder, Newbie, record your dosing progress
in a journal. on this here Stash Card, (created after this blog post). Before each dose, record date, time, starting symptom level, product taken, how much, effects (once the dose has kicked in), time, and another rating of symptom level as much as you can in the columns. There’s a sample of one filled out in the link. Save the labels of the products you’re using so you can refer to them when you figure out what is working for you. (Or take photos,
One to One, One Drop at A Time: The Newbie Challenge
- Start with with one drop under the tongue, (I always use a mirror – that area under the tongue isn’t sensitive enough to feel each drop). Don’t oversaturate! Be diligent!
- Hold the drop of tincture for at least a minute under the tongue, swallow, and wait 15 minutes.
- Rate your symptoms again. Choose whether you want another drop, or if you’re feeling relief already. It’s quite possible to feel relief with one drop — microdosing is very effective for many people, yours truly included. Stopping at one drop or even a couple of drops of the 1:1, you may not feel any psychoactivity whatsoever. You may just feel good.
- If you continue, dose up very, very slowly — a drop at a time — and check in with your body fifteen minutes after each drop. Ask yourself, ‘Am I feeling different?’ ‘Am I feeling better?’ And wait. Listen for the response in your body. And write it down!
At the end of this experiment, you’ll have your first baseline for dosing. HOWEVER. This does not mean that this will always be your dose. It’s more of a starting point. Some days you may need less, some days a little more. If you found you used under five drops, excellent! Your low tolerance means you will get more for your money with cannabis medicine. Continue to dose up one drop at a time.
If you find your tolerance was over ten drops, the next time you dose, you may choose to use two drops at a time, every fifteen minutes. Keep notes! Rate changes! Check in with your body, and know that you’ll feel the effects a little more quickly.
If you get too high, and you don’t have extra CBD on hand to inhale or take sublingually, don’t forget the three things I tell every newbie:
Tell yourself it will pass,
Surround yourself with things you love, and
Go to sleep!
Who knows? The 1:1 sublingual may become your go-to cannabis medicine, as it is mine.
‘Cause if it’s really right…there’s nothing else…
Newbie – I know I’ve told you this before, but you’re in good hands. Your cannabis community welcomes you with open arms — no matter who you are, where you come from, or the challenges that have befallen you. Cannabis is a healer, and whether you’re looking to lighten things up and laugh a little more, or hoping for help with sleep, pain, anxiety, depression, or other more serious health challenges, you will find relief in cannabis — but only if you’re taking an active role in your care.
Approach cannabis with an openness and optimism. The lovely plant is here to heal and it will keep on healing, despite its own challenges. Despite the monetization. Despite Big Pharma. Despite anyone who looks upon it solely for the purpose of capitalizing on it. It will persevere. It will change minds. And lives. It will continue its Mother Nature-assigned mission of healing. And so must you. It is the calling of all of us to heal ourselves, heal each other, and heal the planet.
I didn’t enter the cannabis industry five years ago knowing that it would become such an integral part of my life. I’d used cannabis recreationally for many years and always knew there was something to it beyond giggling and getting the munchies. I got my card to help with pain from a yoga injury. I was a yoga and meditation teacher, and planned to continue studying the healing arts. I had no idea that cannabis itself would become such a force for healing, or that it would complement my other interests so beautifully.
I began to see for myself how healing this plant can be to so many. I came to hear – again and again – testimonials about difficult symptoms and serious illnesses being managed and even reversed with cannabis medicine. I started learning about our beautiful endocannabinoid system (Relevant Sidenote: my spellcheck is still underlining endocannabinoid! We still are so early into all of this that my operating system doesn’t know what do do with it!). I read more and more about the cannabinoids, the terpenes, and how, through the miraculous ‘entourage effect,’ they all work together synergistically to make the medicine even more effective.
I also began to work with patients on developing treatment plans that they then made their own, adjusted as they felt was right, and reported their discoveries back to me. This feedback loop in itself has been tremendously healing for me and for others around me. We’re all learning from each other, since cannabis is still STILL! demonized by the federal government. The plant has made me her own, and I will forever believe in her. I invite you to allow her into your life, too. Microdose her, or saturate with her, and watch the shifts in your health and in your consciousness.
As this movement continues to grow, keep in mind that people everywhere are being drawn to the plant. There will soon be many more new workers entering the industry, as we move into adult use in California in January, so be sure to bring your patience and compassion with you when you come to the dispensary.
And, should you ever feel like your questions are not being answered, or that you’re not getting the attention you need, don’t take it personally. Ask to speak to the sales manager. If you still feel like your needs are not being met, go to another dispensary. Do your research. Check out reviews on YELP. Find out where the best people are near you. Read up! Research! Take responsibility for your health. Keep. Going. Don’t give up. If you honor your own journey, you’ll be surprised and delighted at the people that show up to support you.
Blessings to you and your loved ones for Thanksgiving. I’m so grateful for the healing power of cannabis, for all those who lovingly tend it, and for the this moment we share in time!
Opioid addicts can benefit from cannabis. Just ask the makers of the opioids…
Hello, humans. Did you pick up or download The Emperor Wears No Clothes, by Jack Herer and begin reading it yet? Are you befuddled by this question? It’s a homework assignment from the #1 ThCB. Feel free to backtrack if you’d like.
Or read on. Whatever works.