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Recreational cannabis has been legally instituted statewide in Colorado and Washington, which will change the way in which people will now be able obtain it. Marijuana enthusiasts (sometimes referred to as “stoners”, “potheads” or “tokers”) are now allowed to walk into clean, well-lighted shops which are managed by knowledgeable bud tenders and make their selections in these two states. Meanwhile, in other states where it has yet to be legalized, the dance of locating and securing marijuana continues, and certain rules of etiquette should still apply.
Etiquette is a code of behavior that delineates expectations for social behavior according to contemporary conventional norms within a society, social class, or group. And, according to Emily Post, it is a method of “treating people with consideration, respect, and honesty. It means being aware of how our actions affect those around us.”
“Stoners” tend to develop a pattern of accessing marijuana wherein they have a network of friends and acquaintances who are usually willing to “help out a friend” by “hooking them up.”
Rather than meeting up at a gas station parking lot or behind someone’s garage, proper “stoner” etiquette would dictate that any source who does come through with a requested amount be treated in a certain manner, such as having a secure location for delivery and having their client spend a few minutes to “smoke out” or share their newly purchased merchandise. Acknowledging someone who will go out of their way to make a delivery, putting their freedom at risk, deserves a certain amount of respect.
Tipping is another part of “stoner etiquette” one should consider. Does a buyer give a certain amount of money on top of the purchase price? Or perhaps some product? This may depend on how well the buyer knows the seller, and this practice can also assist in future endeavors, i.e. – if a seller knows a buyer is truly appreciative and willing to tip, either in cash or product, the seller is much more likely to assist the buyer the next time.
Etiquette would also include having the proper accoutrements when sharing with friends. Ensuring there is safe access to a pipe, bong, vaporizer, lighters and/or papers so that the product can be enjoyed is akin to setting a nice table.
There are six points to remember when purchasing marijuana in an “illegal” state.
- Plan carefully and be clear with your source. Ensure they know exactly what amount you intend to purchase, either by weight or monetary worth. Also be specific if there is a choice of strain.
- Establish a pickup or drop off location that is safe and secure. Never go alone if you are unfamiliar with the source, and always keep a watchful eye out for any police activity. For example, don’t drive in a vehicle with expired plates or burned-out headlights. Be careful, and don’t get police an obvious reason to pull the vehicle over.
- Remain calm. Don’t panic or make purchases “on the fly,” rather plan them carefully and follow through.
- Be flexible. If your source can deliver to you, great. If not, make plans that will provide for a safe location for pick up. Behind a Walmart at 2 in the morning is not an ideal situation.
- Make your source feel welcome if delivery is an option. Take a few moments to invite them in, have a drink, perhaps a snack, and share some inspiration as well as your herb.
- Always let your source know you are appreciative. Until cannabis is legal in your location, that person is going out of his or her way to accommodate your needs, putting their own liberty at stake. A simple “Thank You” can go a very long way.
By following basic rules of etiquette, the symbiotic relationship between buyer and supplier will continue to grow, allowing each party to benefit in a safe and healthy fashion. In other words, be safe, respectful, and always be kind!
Photo Credit: The German Federal Archive under (CC BY-SA 3.0 DE) via Wikimedia Commons