In case you haven’t heard, recreational marijuana (which is much more fun than sedentary marijuana) is now legal in the state of California.
But there are a few things you should know before you immediately sell all your possessions and your house and your kids so you can buy a field of marijuana to roll around naked in while on fire.
First, you need to know what and where California is. Then you need to know if you actually live there. Knowing what marijuana (or, “The Weed”) is would be a worthwhile bit of knowledge too.
You should take a moment to Google all of that. You should also know what Google is. So you should probably take a moment to Bing that.
I can’t tell you everything.
Don’t worry, I’ll wait here.
So now that we have all of that out of the way, here are some other important things to know:
1) Your age.
Not how old you feel or how old you look or how old of a person you lie about being in order to get that young lady you met on Tinder to date you. Your ACTUAL age. You need to be 21 and older.
2) Where you are.
Similar to booze, just because it’s legal, doesn’t mean you can partake of it in public. No puffing on the street or in bars or on the beach or in the ocean (unless you swim out far enough to be a pirate). Even if smoking cigarettes is legal somewhere, you still can’t smoke pot there – unless you wanna risk a few hundred dollar fine.
So basically, smoke like a hermit like you already have been.
Eventually, some marijuana lounges might be opened up. I don’t understand how you can build an entire lounge out of marijuana, but that’s fucking California for you.
3. Where to buy and how to read a map.
Technically, sellers need separate licenses to sell medical and recreational marijuana. It’s up to individual cities if they want to issue recreational licenses. And it seems that many don’t really want to yet. So you still might need a doctor’s note so you can buy from a medical dispensary.
Just because it’s legal, it doesn’t mean you can buy it at any random Wal-Mart or mom ‘n pop corner store.
Here’s a handy link (that will apparently be updated fairly often) to a map of where you can buy recreational marijuana http://www.thecannifornian.com/cannabis-news/california-news/legally-buy-recreational-marijuana-california-starting-jan-1/.
I don’t think that your buddy Brent from high school that still sells out of his car is on the map.
4. What you want to buy.
It’s marijuana. That’s what you went there for. Marijuana and marijuana-esque products. If you need to know what kind, your friendly neighborhood budtender could (hopefully) help you out.
5. The quality of the product.
As of January 1st, all cannabis products in California have to be tested for purity (pesticides, mold, contaminants, oregano) and for potency. They need to be labeled so customers know what the THC and CBD and etc. levels are.
BUT, the state has given sellers 6 months to sell off their old, unregulated product. There is supposed to be a warning label in place for the old product. But buyer beware – especially those with any health issues and/or medical reasons for purchasing. Check the labels and ask questions so you know exactly what you’re buying and consuming.
To be fair, almost all of California already bought and smoked pot, even before it was fully legalized. And it was also easier to get a doctor’s recommendation than it was to order avocado toast. But because the states are constantly at odds with the Federal Dictatorship, it’s best to stay as much within your local laws as possible.
Do your research. Be aware. And stay green.