Stories from high people 

That one time, when I was stoned...

No matter how they know marijuana — as herb, trees, green, ganja, the devil’s lettuce, flower or Mary Jane — longtime users have experienced emotional, funny, uplifting and transformative times with weed. There’s nothing like a good stoner story (if you can remember them). Here’s a collection of anecdotes from locals, tales worthy of smoking down to. In fact, a few may even inspire you.

Mary got jokes too

Back in the early ‘90s, when Randy Smith and his roommate could purchase 3 pounds of bacon for $5, they loaded up on BLTs and Mary Jane before attending a comedy show in Overland Park, Kansas. Blue-collar comedian Jeff Foxworthy was in town and They had front-row seats and backstage passes at a small venue that held about 100 people.

Foxworthy began a joke: “I don’t understand this Midwest mathematics. Just exactly how much is a shitload anyway?” Smith didn’t miss a beat and answered, “A little bit more than a buttload.” There was a roar of laughter from the audience.

Foxworthy stumbled and chuckled then pointed at Smith with a stern gaze: “I’ll see you after the show.” Luckily, Foxworthy can take a joke as well as he tells one. “Mind if I use that joke in my new book?” he asked Smith. No problem. Smith hasn’t seen the joke on paper but it’s a memory he loves sharing.

A+... and a little something extra

“During my college years, the pain from my auto-immune disease was severe,” Ingrid Van Aken says.

One particularly agonizing episode came right before Van Aken went to take her honors test at a local university. She tried to suppress the urge for relief but found herself ingesting MJ before being delivered to the school steps. “I felt so nervous and guilty,” she recalls, “but once I got into the testing room and the pain dissipated, I released my inhibitions by reinstating my passion for marijuana’s medicinal benefits, because truth be told, I felt sooo much better and could function.”
So for the next few hours, Van Aken dialed into her creative side, and zoomed through writing three papers with a confidence she hadn’t experienced before. A week went by and Van Aken received a call from the school informing her that she had been named student of the year.

The ghost of munchies past

P.B., an exuberant woman from Washington, D.C., who preferred we only share her initials, has a sway in her hips, a chortle in her belly and a superstitious nature.

One evening P.B. sat down in her Colorado Springs apartment for her nightly routine of watching TV with a vape pen in one hand and something to satisfy her munchies in the other. The night ended like many others — falling asleep in her favorite chair before retiring to the bedroom.

In the morning, she awoke to a strange sense and noticed her vape battery had disappeared. “Now look, my cartridge was fine, it was the battery that was missing” P.B. explains. “Back on the East Coast in D.C., you know not to leave the key in the lock so I never leave my vape cartridge with the battery. I leave the cartridge in my nightstand and the battery in another room.”

After searching high and low, tossing off sheets, and digging through couches, P.B. suspected there was a ghost in her presence. “I wasn’t too mad or scared and wanted to resolve the issue because girrrlll, I told that ghost, ‘If you wanna continue staying in my house, you goin’ to pay some rent,’” P.B. insisted.

The ghost must have heard her loud and clear because two nights later she found her battery at the bottom of a potato chip bag. Case closed: Ghosts get the munchies too.

May the force be with you

click to enlarge Donna uses MJ to tap her abilities. - KIMBERLY HOADLEY
  • Kimberly Hoadley
  • Donna uses MJ to tap her abilities.
Donna Force says she regularly takes a peak into the future with a little help from Mary Jane. She has the familiar tools of a devoted mystic: crystals, tarot cards, incense and a sixth sense. She also has a knack for “reading” someone on first glance, especially in dispensaries. In one case, she says, within 30 minutes of stepping into a medical dispensary, she sensed a deep-rooted trauma from one budtender and a communication issue with the other. The three chanted “om” together and used the “life force energy” to remove any kinks.

Force says that while she uses cannabis to tap into her special abilities, she started using it for another reason. Her doctor cut off her supply of prescription painkillers.

“I can’t prescribe you any more pain meds, Donna,” Force recalls her doctor telling her. “The DEA is getting pissy.”

Force says she was crestfallen until her husband, Jeff, told her, “I think there’s something you’re not thinking about. You have many friends and acquaintances who are all a part of this network and support system that also includes the use of marijuana.”

As Force notes, “My hubby knows me so well! MMJ [medical marijuana] provides more than relief from the pain or anxiety. It gave me a culture that imparts enthusiasm and hope.” Force continues to visit her dispensaries and to talk about cannabis. It isn’t only medicine for the body and mind, she says, but also for the heart.

Pot hole

click to enlarge Peter Ridgeway, out of the hole, in front of his keys. - COURTESY ANDREW WEISS
  • Courtesy Andrew Weiss
  • Peter Ridgeway, out of the hole, in front of his keys.
Along with working various positions in the MMJ field, Peter Ridgeway also has a reputation of rocking a keyboard for the death metal band Knights of the Abyss. Toward the end of a tour in the summer of 2008, Ridgeway and his bandmates were enjoying an antics-filled final day off on a beach in North Carolina.

The six band members had dug a large hole, planning to bury some unlucky friend in it (presumably with their head above the sand) but decided the hole could have another use.

“We decided we should just shhmoke in the hole since we didn’t wanna stink up the van before heading to Florida,” Ridgeway explained.

The hole proved a perfect place in which to enjoy some well-earned euphoria with the sun setting on the horizon. Ridgeway continues, “Before smoking, we covered it with a blanket then hotboxed it. I know, pretty simple, but it was a MASSIVE hole and we chiefed dooown.” Hole or not, smoking beach-side with the homies strikes a groovy chord with any stoner.

Painting between the lines

click to enlarge Leach helps painters use imagination. - KIMBERLY HOADLEY
  • Kimberly Hoadley
  • Leach helps painters use imagination.
At the Painter’s Pot, artist Melody Leach guides students through classes on how to find a meditative state with Mary Jane while putting their paintbrush and creativity to work on canvas.

In other words, she’s there to inspire. But Leach recalls one student who really inspired her: a vet who had lost his eyesight in Desert Storm. “It was incredibly exciting to watch him paint!” she says.

Leach admired how the man used his background in engineering to measure. He’d put his thumb on the edge, then swing his finger onto the canvas, and then gently touch the tip of the brush before painting.

“Draw a line from your 2 o’clock to 9 o’clock for the horizon,” she remembers telling him. Leach’s teaching skills were refined that evening as she harnessed her best descriptors to guide him through the class’ painting — a moon between trees. She also recalled, “At one point, he didn’t like how he imagined the painting to look, so he changed it up and both variations were utterly beautiful.” Looking at the painting, she says, no one would have known that the artist could only see it with his imagination.

Eat, pray and love edibles

We aren’t advocating to surf while high, but a jungle hike should be just fine. - KIMBERLY HOADLEY
  • Kimberly Hoadley
  • We aren’t advocating to surf while high, but a jungle hike should be just fine.
While traveling around Southeast Asia, Anthony Becerra landed in Bali, Indonesia. (Disclosure: The author and Becerra were high school friends.) It’d been years since Becerra had been home in weed-friendly Colorado and he had rarely smoked weed on his travels. Unknown to Becerra, his buddy from the neighboring island, Java, fed him a couple edibles. He was flying high in no time.

“I realized Mary was in my system when the jungle colors started to brighten up and the tropical breeze flowed right through me,” he says.
Thankfully, the edible didn’t cause much paranoia. The surge of energy sent 
Becerra and company on a waterfall hunt. Along the way, the group became lost and walked in circles before a village local pointed them in the right direction.

Becerra laughed at the memory. “Oh man, that was a struggle. But the journey was so vivid. We came to the stone trailhead, descended beneath the valley’s canopy and made the last stretch of our journey to the waterfall. That trip, I fell in love with Bali.” Becerra’s honeymoon with “The Island of the Gods” came to an end when he headed home to 
Colorado at August’s end.


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