Talking to Grandma About Marijuana

The title of this blog post sounds odd, doesn’t it? Growing up, we’ve been bombarded by public service ads designed to get parents to talk to their kids about drug addiction, but now there is a non-profit out there called The Silver Tour dedicated to educating seniors about medical marijuana use. As we get older/better we become more susceptible to illness and aches, and proponents of cannabis want our elders to know that there are ways to combat the pains associated with aging that don’t involve expensive pills.

I will admit it’s been difficult to watch my parents age. Every time I visit their hair appears grayer and they don’t move around as agilely as they once did. I have to speak up at times so they can understand me, and I should expect to make certain concessions to accommodate their age. We knew this going into life that it ends eventually, but all I’d want for my parents is for them to remain as vital and alert as I remember them. If that means suggesting alternative methods of treatment to improve their life, you know I’m going to bring it up at Sunday dinner!

Now, my parents hold the belief that drugs = bad. The word marijuana conjures images of gun-toting drug runners and slack-jawed stoners who can barely lift a finger to change the channel. Yes, we laugh at the stereotypes and goofy pictures on Tumblr, but we know at the end of the day that marijuana offers healing properties that Big Pharma can’t necessarily duplicate. How do we guide our parents and grandparents past the negative stereotypes to educate them on natural healing? From the time we are children, we have been taught that healing comes in an amber tube and a tight white lid – that’s not necessarily true. If groups like The Silver Tour can reach our older generations and let them know they don’t have to live with pain, perhaps that thought will trickle down to the rest of us. If my parents decided to try medical cannabis I would certainly not be ashamed. I’d be proud to know that my parents keep open minds to alternative healing.

Bobbie Carson

 

Advertisements

From a Single Seed

This excerpted article appeared in the August, 2001 issue of The Art of Mary Jane Magazine, the premier magazine of cannabis culture and Mary Jane girls. If you’re interested in reading more articles like that, we invite you to subscribe to our magazine today!

Seeds have many benefits; the most helpful is that they do not introduce pests or problems into a garden like clones can. Another benefit seedlings can provide is health and vigor since sometimes clones can be old, tired, or even diseased without it showing visibly. When you start good hybrid cannabis seeds, you get to select a taste and effect that is more customized to your needs.

Many growers opt for feminized seeds since less selection and space is required to find a female plant worth keeping, but I feel the seed industry is partly to blame for heavily advertising feminized seeds as the easy way to grow. I have found nothing in life that is easier, and anytime you put in more hard work and effort, the results are always worth the extra details. The male plant is very important in breeding and many traits such as pest resistance, fungus resistance, and even potency are passed on from the male of the species.

The main reason people choose feminized seeds over regular seeds is space constraints. I have found many elite plants by starting just five seeds and selecting the best female, not only with TGA seeds but other breeders’ as well.

When selecting seeds, do some homework online and find out what real medical growers are actually raising in their gardens and not what’s being advertised by the Dutch re-sellers. Make sure you’re selecting based on grower feedback and not some huge advertisement or some fixed cannabis competition. While TGA seeds have an excellent reputation among medical growers, there are many talented breeders who not only care about their product but test extensively to ensure quality. Most are smaller breeders who cater to the medical community, however.

Feminized seeds are notorious for containing high ratios of hermaphrodites and to an inexperienced grower these can wreak havoc among your sinsemilla crop.

You would be surprised how many veteran growers have problems with getting seeds started. The most common mistake is to use a heat mat, which cooks the seeds. Cannabis is a weed and, as long as the seeds are viables, it’s hard to prevent them from germinating. I have had seeds germinate under the floor mat of a car in my youth and recently some of the seeds I deemed not viable germinated under my BBQ grill in gravel in cold winter. I see people soaking or treating the seeds in God knows what products and I just shake my head.

All a seed needs to germinate is moisture and a temperature range between 50-90 degrees Fahrenheit and you’re good to go. There are other factors involved, though, and if you germinate your seeds between 70-80 degrees you will have a better ratio of females. Warmer temperatures tend to produce more male plants.

By Subcool

Marijuana as Medicine – Toke Two and Call Me in the Morning

We can type until our fingers fall off, praising the many uses of cannabis as a medicinal aid. It makes us happy to know that some in the medical community haven’t given up hope on getting cannabis approved for legitimate use. GW Pharma, a British company, is currently seeking FDA approval for a cannabis-based mouth spray used in the treatment of oral cancer.

If such a product is approved, it could change the game for legalization altogether. When you think of how the byproducts of marijuana like THC and cannabidiol can relieve pain in patients, there’s no telling how we can work to improve the overall health of this country. How amazing is it that we are sitting on something amazing yet do nothing about helping people who truly need it?

We will definitely be watching the progress of this drug for FDA approval, and hope the government does the right thing.

Passing the Wiz Quiz

This article is an excerpt from “Tips to Passing Your Wiz Quiz,” as read in The Art of Mary Jane.

The Art of Mary Jane believes no one should be forced to undergo urine testing, especially for marijuana. Aside from launching a legal challenge, your best defense against urine testing is to be clean.

Unfortunately, this may be difficult since urine tests can detect marijuana 3-10 days after a single use, and 4-6 weeks or more for heavy chronic users. If you are in the job market, it is prudent to expect to be tested and avoid marijuana. However, recognizing that many of you face drug testing on short notice, we offer the following advice for emergencies with our best wishes (but no promises!).

The general strategy for passing urine tests is to increase your fluid intake and urine flow soaps to dilute the concentration of THC metabolite in your urine below the threshold of detection. In the days or hours preceding the test, you should wash yourself out by drinking plenty of fluids. Water is fine – contrary to popular rumor, drinking vinegar doesn’t help.

You can boost your fluid output by taking diuretics, which stimulate urination. The most potent diuretics are prescription drugs, widely used for high blood pressure. Weak diuretics of dubious efficacy are found in certain over the counter products, such as premenstrual pills for water retention. Contrary to rumor, phenylpropanolamine, the active ingredient in Dexatrim, is not a diuretic and is likely to make you test positive for amphetamines.

The night before the test, drink lots of liquid – as much as you can stand. Be sure to empty your bladder the next morning, since urine that accumulates overnight tends to be “dirty.” Prepare for the test by loading up again on lots of fluids. Boost this with a diuretic if possible.

If you’re taking the test on short notice without time to wash out beforehand, the following method has been suggested by a former army drug testing officer [Robert Freeman, “How to Beat a Drug Test,” High Times, August, 1988]: Take an 80-milligram dose of the prescription drug Lasix (furosemide); take a hefty drink of water; piss two or three times; then take the test. (Again, the caution above regarding the dangers of diuretics to some individuals applies.)

One slight hitch with urine dilution is that some labs are suspicious of the clear, watery urine it produces. You can fix this by taking 50 or 100 milligrams of vitamin B-2 (available in B-Complex vitamins) which will color your urine yellow for a couple of hours. Contrary to popular rumor, Vitamin C doesn’t help.

If you are lucky and didn’t smoke too much pot, a good washout may get you past a test on a weekend notice.

Out of a Smoke-Filled Closet

I smoke pot.

In theory, these should be three simple words to say. They certainly are very short words, and you could get them out in the space of a second, though the people you talk to may ask you to repeat them a few times so they know they heard correctly. Seems for many stoners, the partaking of cannabis is something enjoyed in private. How many of us have sealed jars of buds tucked away in a closet or other hidey-hole, places we know our parents, friends, co-workers, and even spouses won’t know to look? One would think there’s nothing wrong with being open about what you enjoy, but when it comes to smoking pot it’s a different ball game.

Of course, unless you have a card that permits you to buy from a dispensary or you live in an area where weed is legal, if you toke you are probably breaking the law. If word gets out about your favorite vice, you may risk losing your job, and the chances of being branded negatively increase. Smoking weed for leisure rather than medicinal purposes often comes tied to the stigma that stoners are shiftless, lazy, and just plain dumb. Yet, many of us might be quick to point out that a business executive’s nightly cocktail does more physical and mental damage to a body, though who’s going to listen to a dumb pothead?

Is it a good idea to come out to friends and family as a smoker? This largely depends on your situation. As a responsible adult able to hold down a job and handle daily expenses, you probably feel your vice is no more harmful than smoking cigarettes and drinking beer after a hard day. In truth, it isn’t, but if you’re surrounded by people who cringe at Harold and Kumar and feel justice is served when a celebrity is busted for possession, you may feel safe in a smoke-filled closet.

If you gauge that friends and family may be more liberal-minded, your decision to literally air out your preferences should be handled carefully and gently. Shock value probably won’t win you points – you don’t want to sit down in the living room while everybody is watching TV, light up a joint, and start puffing. Just as you want people to respect your decisions and opinions, it goes both ways. When you engage in conversation about marijuana, listen to your loved one’s concerns. If you are so inclined, ease in what you know of cannabis and the benefits, and assure everyone that weed is not a gateway to truly damaging drugs.

You may be asked about your smoking habits – how often you toke and where you do it. If people are more accepting of your choices, they may be more concerned about the legality of your activities, especially when it comes to where you get your weed. While you probably do not want to go too much into detail about that, you want to let friends and family know that you have a good handle on your smoking, that you are discreet and don’t push weed on others, and that you definitely continue to function well.

Coming out to friends and family about smoking pot can be a scary proposition, and this might not be a good time to talk openly about it. Look for the right cues when with friends and family, and decide for yourself if they should know at all. Most importantly, don’t feel shame either way.

Bobbie Carson writes about Mary Jane girls and cannabis culture.