Coming from my hometown in Texas (I know – I got out as soon as I could), weed was never really a public topic of discussion. That’s not to say that we didn’t talk about it — because we did, just in hushed tones in bathroom stalls. We were young, bored and hopped up on Mountain Dew. Weed was a regular adolescent conversation after a night of tipping cows and riding our horses around town. Looking for the nearest saloon to wet some whistles, most would end up at a local What-a-burger, better known colloquially as “Waterburger” or the best place to run into everyone you hated at 3 a.m. on a Friday night. Here is where you could catch the best weed conversations.
We mostly talked about where we could find some without having to consult that weird guy you had algebra with in summer school. Or if you already had some, you were going to drive everyone to the golf course to enjoy the … grass. Though I cannot speak for everyone, that type of conversation three years ago in high school, regardless of what state you were living in, was not what it is today. The accessibility of marijuana is so much easier today than it used to be. I am still on edge on whether this is good or bad, but hey, life is what you bake it. Sorry, make it.
You can walk around Old Town any given night and see people light up on the street like it was never a big deal. Weed is no longer taboo. Whenever I venture out of the state of Colorado and smell that oh-so-familiar “organic” smell, I am struck with nostalgia of good old Fort Collins. The two have become synonymous in my mind. I find it so interesting how marijuana culture has become so immersed in the Colorado lifestyle. That’s not to say there aren’t other parts of the Colorado lifestyle that are enjoyable, such as hiking, skiing and drinking any of our prime microbrews. I am, of course, only speaking about those who choose to add dabbling with the devil’s lettuce into the mix.
It seems as though weed had become integral to living the picture-perfect bohemian lifestyle. Again, I can’t speak for everyone, other than our neighbors south of us in Boulder, but I am getting pretty annoyed with all the weed talk. It used to be a fun, kind of a risque thing you did when you’re parents were out of town. Now it’s become something so easily accessible the excitement has withered away. At least for me.
No matter how many fat doobies I come into contact with, I still have a hard time shaking my roots. My 18-year-sentence in Texas taught me that smoking weed and living morally correct do not coincide. It wasn’t until I moved to Colorado that I learned otherwise. Weed isn’t bad, nor does it make you a bad person. It isn’t that addictive. You cannot overdose from it. If anything, you will just eat some really dank food and take a wicked sweet nap. (You might have noticed a change in my tone in that last sentence, don’t mind the lingo I am just trying to appeal to a younger audience, brah.) The point is, ultimately, it is your choice whether you do it or not. No one else can make that decision for you. But if you choose to do it, do it among people you trust or at home alone with a fully-stocked fridge.
We are lucky enough to live in a time where the legalization of marijuana nationwide is an actual possibility. I predict in the next couple of years, most states will see the benefits outweigh the possible pitfalls and legalize it everywhere. I’m looking at you, Texas. Then high school kids will have to find better things to talk about. Maybe we’ll see an increase in conversations about social justice or cultural appropriation. Until then, enjoy this year’s 4/20, and blaze safe my friends. Don’t drink and drive. Park and spark.
Collegian Columnist Kendall McElhaney says you’re cute. She thinks weed be good together. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or on Twitter @kendallaftrdark.