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The Mapping of the Cannabis Genome

Beneficial Arrangements to Love











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In Southern California, this month’s magazine is our premiere issue, and September is also the first month that I am writing content for the magazine, including this editor’s statement, which I have decided to run Statewide rather than making separate statements for our NorCal and SoCal magazines. California is the world’s seventh largest economy, and there are marked differences in the NorCal and SoCal markets. This is the main reason we decided to publish two separate magazines in California; however, there are also unique aspects of the cannabis industry that are different in California than anywhere else in the United States. For this reason, there is going to be an emphasis here at the magazine to have congruent messaging Statewide in California. Something you can look forward to in this and upcoming issues of our California magazines is an ongoing exploration into the personal reasons that individual patients are choosing cannabis over pharmaceuticals, or in some instances in addition to big pharma, for their medical conditions.



September is a big month for us here at DOPE Magazine. In Washington State, September marks our four year anniversary of publishing DOPE Magazine and “Defending Our Plant Everywhere” (you know that’s what DOPE stands for, right?)


There is a stigma around the use of marijuana that has resulted in draconian laws, a massive prison population of non violent drug offenders, the segmentation of society across economic lines, and a sense of shame around cannabis use, where people feel conflicted for using cannabis even when they know it works for their conditions. It is time to end the shame, and remove the stigma around cannabis use. That is why we are launching our hashtag campaign #end420shame and will be featuring stories from people across the USA each month, including my own story coming soon. Evan Kopelson - CA State Director















DOPE is a free publication dedicated to providing an informative and wellnessminded voice to the cannabis movement. While our foundation is the medical cannabis industry, it is our intent to provide ethical and research-based articles that address the many facets of the war on drugs, from politics to lifestyle and beyond. We believe that through education and honest discourse, accurate policy and understanding can emerge. DOPE Magazine is focused on defending both our patients and our plant, and to being an unceasing force for revolutionary change.














DOPE Magazine and the entire contents of this magazine are copyright 2015 DOPE MAGAZINE LLC, all rights reserved and may not be reproduced in any manner, in whole or part without the written permission from Dope Magazine LLC




The Mapping of the Cannabis Genome

Beneficial Arrangements to Love




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GENETICS Cookie Wreck comes from famed Cannaventure seed. It is a cross of Girl Scout Cookies and Trainwreck, two popular medical cannabis strains for their distinctive effects. This rare phenotype was meticulously bred and selected from 50 seeds, making Cookie Wreck one of the strongest and most sought after strains of cannabis in Los Angeles today.

MEDICAL BENEFITS This potent, balanced hybrid is said by many to be very effective for body pain and can help lift the spirits and relieve some forms of anxiety. There is however always the possibility for a contra-indication regarding anxiety sufferers when using cannabis, so be mindful and try a small amount first. Appetite seems to be stimulated here as well.

LOOKS Three words come to mind immediately in describing this beautiful and rare strain of cannabis: green, purple, and frosty. Cookie Wreck inherits the best beauty traits from its parents in this premium strain; these are beautiful dense buds packed with trichomes and layered with crystals.


21% THC .7% CBD

Its sweet smell carries just a hint of that unique woodsy aroma often familiar to fans of Trainwreck. A deeply pleasing scent, I found myself fantasizing about standing in a room surrounded by these beautiful plants, and what it would be like to experience their powerful aromatheraputic healing powers first hand.


EFFECT Cookie Wreck offers the mind expansive qualities of Trainwreck and the deep body relaxation enabled by Girl Scout Cookies. It can make you feel relaxed, happy, and giggly. Cookie Wreck had me firing up the Pro Tools and recording electronic music until 4am. Yet when it was time for bed, I slept like a baby.

FLAVOR With earthy attributes being contributed by its Girl Scout Cookie parent, and sweet lemon and spicy pine aroma being handed down from Trainwreck, Cookie Wreck tastes great. Note: Enjoying it also results in some fairly epic dry mouth.

PROVIDED BY: • Nanda in coordination with Grace

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FOUND AT: • Grace (West LA) • Marina Caregivers (Marina Del Rey)


Raw Collective’s The Nutty Surfer



Purity Comes First In This Beach Inspired Favorite • Head baker and company owner Meghan made the top 100 of television show MasterChef.

100MG tested

• Raw only uses cannabis grown in house or sourced from selected “sister-farms.” • They are proud to be one of the few producers of the cancer curing Rick Simpson Oil (RSO) in Southern California.

HE SALTY air of Ocean Beach, San Diego, has inspired baker Meghan from Raw to create The Nutty Surfer in tribute to the area’s bleaching sun, beachgoer-packed sands, and the blonde hair of surfer boys and girls. They’re not your usual baking company; Raw is based on a culture of homegrown and handcrafted, and their products show they make everything with care. Meghan has five years of baking experience and has been creating delicious cannabis meds at Raw for a year and a half. All of Raw’s medicinal cannabis products are grown in California, and lab tested for purity and consistency. This is a big reason why Raw is finding success within older generations in San Diego, as local doctors recommend the collective to aging patients concerned about the quality of their medicine. DELIVERY ONLY Based in Mission Valley delivery available to all of San Diego

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Infused with a mix of berry white and blue dream strains, and inspired by the sandy shores and clear skies of Southern California. The Nutty Surfer is topped with a mix of sliced California almonds and chewy toffee pieces. Melt in your mouth good, with a citrus sweet aftertaste; the extremely tasty cookie base is soaked through with cannabis infused butter. Sweetened coconut further elevates the sublimely rich flavors. Fresh, crunchy almonds provide a textural counterpoint to chewy toffee bits. Each packet contains two squares with 50mg of THC in each, allowing four doses from each delicious square. Surfers will appreciate the powerful anti-inflammatory qualities after pushing their bodies to the limit in the waves.





Grace Medical Marijuana Dispensary A Tale of Two Collectives RACE MEDICAL

Marijuana Pharmacy in West Los Angeles is actually a tale of two dispensaries. The spiritual parent of Grace is Herbalcure, the first vertically integrated collective in Los Angeles. Grace’s President, Peter Tejera, founded Herbalcure in 2007 with the mission to cultivate the cleanest, purest, highest quality, and most effective medical grade cannabis, free of funguses and pesticides, and to get that medicine into the hands of patients who most need it. Grace carries on Herbalcure’s mission. Herbalcure cultivated its own proprietary strains of cannabis, grew its own flowers, processed its own concentrates, and vended its own medicine with a focus on collecting patient feedback. For full disclosure, I used to work at Herbalcure as a cannabis consultant. During my tenure at Herbalcure, I helped craft and personally collected thousands of patient feedback forms, mostly from military veterans. The questions were straightforward and helped us hone our expertise in recommending specific strains of cannabis to individual patients with varying medical conditions. I spoke with Grace’s manager Lisa about some of the things she is most proud of about Grace. For Lisa, what makes Grace special comes down to their knowledgeable, friendly staff, the quality of their medicine, and their emphasis on patient comfort and safety. Grace is architecturally unique, featuring a distinctive exterior, a large atrium entrance with pleasant natural light, big comfortable couches inside, and a zen-like feel throughout. The goal, Lisa says, is to help patients

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“There is a stigma attached to [cannabis], and people are still fearful about it and feel like they’re do- ing something wrong. We want people to come in and not to feel uncomfortable about it.”



feel comfortable coming to get their medicine. “There is a stigma attached to [cannabis], and people are still fearful about it and feel like they’re doing something wrong. We want people to come in and not to feel uncomfortable about it.” Lisa says Cookie Wreck is the most popular strain of flower at Grace, and Honey Vape is their most popular brand of concentrates for its high quality, clear polished finish and eleven strain specific flavors and effects. Grace also proudly features Canna Kids, a CBD oil that is proving to help kids and adults with seizures, cancer symptoms, and chemotherapy. Grace carries top, middle, and low shelf prices so they can accommodate patients on any budget, and they offer a 10% discount to military veterans. 12320 Pico Blvd Los Angeles, CA 90064 310-826-2592 ISSUE 01 THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

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Saving America With Cannabis

“Jack believed America needed to shift its consciousness and think differently, and that cannabis was a short cut to cultural acceptance and enlightenment.” • Jack Herer Photo by Eve Lentz

ACK HERER, author of the Emperor Wears No Clothes, inspired the cannabis movement starting back in the 1970’s, which, after all these years and through much hard work, created a new billion-dollar industry for America. “Hemp Can Save the Planet” was his battle cry, and Jack promoted the use of cannabis for food, fuel, fiber, and medicine. But, he also believed that America needed to shift its consciousness and think differently, and that cannabis was a short cut to cultural acceptance and enlightenment.

Herer travelled with the Hemp Tours, which hit the road at the height of the War on Drugs campaign, hosting over 1500 advocacy events between 1989 and 1996. Constitutional protections were at an all time low, and police were profiling people across the nation, looking for cannabis. At the time, police could stop and search people for merely for having a Grateful Dead sticker on their car, or for simply ‘looking like’ they used cannabis. During this time, our nations prison became bloated with people there for nothing more than simple possession of drugs.

As Barry “Plunker” Adams, co-founder of the Rainbow Family, and expert on the constitutional right to gather says, “Cannabis users share a common creed. Basically, it’s simple, we tolerate each other, and we like to share cannabis. Then, we begin to share other things, like coffee and a meal. ”

Many of the leaders of the industry got their start with Herer during this time, including people like Steve DeAngelo and Ed Rosenthal, whose membership in the Youth International Party (the infamous Yippies of the 1960’s and 70’s) inspired the cannabis movement to stay fun, fresh, and radical. If you look closely, you’ll find many people through out the cannabis industry who got their start at Hemp Tour events and in the

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other major advocacy groups. In short, all of these people started in activism to promote a mission, which was, and still is, to make America a better place by ending cannabis prohibition.



Unfortunately, all of the original cannabis dispensaries have closed, including Dennis Peron’s original dispensary in San Francisco, and their former leadership is largely silenced, worn down by police action after police action. Jack Herer passed away in 2010. Now, with the cannabis industry expanding at lighting speed, many of its new entrepreneurs missed cannabis prohibition all together. Being harassed by the police, arrested for cannabis, and spending time in jail, like how many of the industries pioneers did, created a powerful force for more activism and change. In other words, rather than being crushed by prohibition, our advocates became stronger through struggle. Enter the neuve cannabis entrepreneurs. They see what happened before is laced with stigma, and they want no part of it. Going to jail for cannabis or battling the War on Drugs in the streets for our freedoms is at many times not in their wheelhouse. Instead, their battle cry can often be, “We are here to clean that all up,” somehow without realizing that they are [not only] talking about the existing cannabis industry, but also their [current] clients. This situation would be more worrisome, but cannabis users are perceptive and can spot a fake, because their creed is real. To people with friends in prison, who are still harassed on the streets, and who know people denied cannabis medicines by prohibition, it’s important to build an industry that stays mission and values based, like we have always been. Done right, cannabis legalization will have a long lasting positive effect on America.

• Jack Herer Photo by Allan Erickson

Cannabis, when consumed, gives people the opportunity to interrupt their normal thought processes. People actually start thinking differently, relating facts and ideas together in ways they had not imagined before. This is, in fact, the crux of creativity. But, for the brain to manage these internal thought-based processes, it takes a little more time. Cannabis users like to ponder ideas, often literally hashing things out in their mind. Using cannabis for business may actually give companies a competitive edge, because in entrepreneurial industries, innovation is key. At the International Cannabis Business Conference (ICBC) in Portland last fall, conservative pundit Andrew Sullivan spoke about how the mission and the vision of or first cannabis industry is changing America as a whole. This must stay the goal, while we also build great businesses. As Alex Rogers, ICBC founder says, “Make money and be successful, and no one else has to lose.”

•Alex Rogers and Andrew Sullivan

So, as the cannabis industry builds, let us stay focused on keeping the 44% of Americans who have used cannabis out of harms way from prohibition. People should unite around developing sound businesses, but also around culture, politics, and advocacy…and most important, be kind. ISSUE 01 THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

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One Patient’s Lessons From the Strain Droughts

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T’S DROUGHT season, and I’m not talking about water. In the cannabis industry, this drought refers to the period of time between outdoor harvest starts to run out, or turn with age, and the fresh harvests of early greenhouse buds haven’t come off the plant. It usually starts in the winter, gets bad in the spring, and then tapers out in the summer when the early harvests come.

Common challenges during a drought may be… YOUR FAVORITE STRAINS ARE GONE The drought tends to reveal what strains are in demand, because those strains start to disappear in the springtime. If you seek a strain that was undergrown in comparison to its popular demand, prompt action is warranted since the longer it’s been since harvest, the more difficult it is to find. As someone that buys for medicinal reasons, it pays to consider slightly larger purchases when the right strain for your needs presents itself. These strain droughts are a common problem for people who use cannabis medicinally, because often they’ve found a specific strain for their condition. For example, we love the strain Grape Ape. It gives a clear headed effect with all the pain relief needed. We can usually find this strain at harvest but as the drought goes on, it becomes more and more rare in the shops.



Another common problem that happens is strains that might normally work for a person, cease to work, perhaps even causing negative side effects. This happens because as cannabis ages, chemical compounds break down and change to become different chemical compounds. The strain that hit you so well a few months back at harvest no longer has the same chemical properties, creating a different effect.

The longer cannabis sits around, the more opportunity for mold growth, which leads to common complaints amongst patients of increased allergies. Sometimes, even cannabis that has been tested for mold develops mold later on, after months in storage, but it’s never retested so it gets through to patients. So, as a result, increased allergies seems to be quite common.

A Patient’s Guide to Drought Survival…. STOCK UP EARLY AND STORE IT WELL




Stock up on your best strains during harvest. Cannabis is especially fresh and inexpensive at this time of year, take advantage and buy in bulk to get through the winter and spring.

While the seasons affect the greenhouse and outdoor markets, the indoor market can produce cannabis all year round. If you are sensitive to the effects of aged cannabis, consider switching to indoor product, especially grown in the spring. Although it can be more expensive, and the effects may be slightly different than its outdoor counterpart, indoor can be the best option if a patient needs a specific strain.

Clean high quality concentrates can be a good option for many patients, and concentrates tend to age more slowly than raw flower due to the processing they go through. While they can also break down and alter in effect with age, well preserved concentrates can come to the rescue later on in the season when all the flower has already aged and turned. Again, the effect can vary but concentrates may be a more effective solution than the currently available flower, even if flower is usually preferred.

Having to start over after finding just the right medicine can be daunting. This season, when this writer couldn’t find any of the normal go-to strains, I had to start experimenting with new strains and strain combinations. In the process new favorites not explored in the past were revealed. Playing with strain combinations, and finding what draws a person to a particular variety is a good approach to finding the right one. For example, my favorite strain is Grape Ape, because it helps with my nausea and body tension, while keeping my head clear. It’s rare to find another strain that helps with all of my symptoms, but when Grape Ape isn’t on the shelves, I’ll combine strains, using one like Skunk to help with nausea, and another like Gorilla Glue to help with body tension.

Cannabis is not a turkey, and shouldn’t be treated as such. Glass is best. Oven bags, although common in the industry, don’t preserve the product as well as your everyday glass jar. It’s key that the cannabis is stored well, or it will degrade before the drought ends, so store it in a dark, dry place like a closet or closed drawer, in glass. Sunlight speeds up the break-down of the chemical compounds, and moisture can introduce mold growth. Make sure to check in on your herb periodically to ensure it isn’t too moist, or mold issues may occur. ISSUE 01 THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

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Unlocking Secrets:

The Mapping of the Cannabis Genome

OW THAT the cannabis legaliza-

tion genie is out of the bottle, investors and entrepreneurs are churning out binders of business research and plans. There’s clearly no stopping the growth of this brand new industry with its built-in consumer base of millions across the planet. Something is being lost though, amidst all the legislative action, the rush of startups, and the quickly expanding consumer demand. It’s a mystery most in the industry don’t even know exists: What exactly is cannabis and what does the cannabis genome look like? The answer to that question is a big one that the entire industry needs to know. This knowledge will benefit us all as cannabis users, but mostly it will help patients who still rely on

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largely anecdotal information to treat their serious ailments. This will also help regulators and lawmakers who need to have reliable scientific information to discuss the next steps in legalization. With legal constraints hampering much true scientific research, it’s now finally clear that the time for the quantification of cannabis has come, and that’s where evolutionary biologist Dr. Nolan Kane comes in. In a small lab inside the Ramaley Biology building on the campus of the University of Colorado in Boulder, Kane has studied what the untrained eye would perceive as mundane plants like sunflowers, mustard, and chocolate to discover their hidden properties. He now also knows more about the inside workings of the cannabis plant than any other scientist in



the world as a result of the Cannabis Genome Research Initiative (CGRI). The project will sequence numerous specimens from the three species of cannabis - pure sativa, indica and ruderalis - to examine the relationships between the major lineages within the genus, the spread of cannabis throughout the globe, and the rates of historical hybridization. Dr. Kane and his team of seven evolutionary biologists have joined with graduate students and research assistants to do what no one has done before: mapping the genome of the cannabis plant. “I decided as a professor less than two years ago that I wanted to move in a different direction,” he says. “I still wanted to study sunflowers, but I wanted to do something in a way that was novel and interesting.” Then he heard from a colleague about the changes in the status of the legality of cannabis in Colorado.

“I thought about it, and it sort of took on a life of its own.” Kane wanted to address basic biologic questions about cannabis, such as how the evolutionary aspects of the plant work, the genetics of adaption, and how a wild species was turned into a domesticated crop. The role of hybridization between distant members of the species to create different sub species is also an area of interest. “Those were many of the same questions that I had been addressing in sunflowers for a long time,” Kane says, “But the difference is [with cannabis] there is so much that is so wide open because it’s really understudied, relative to every other high value crop. It’s really complicated once you get into it.” One of those basic questions is the origin of the Y chromosome. “Our own Y chromosome evolved a couple of hundred million years ago,” Kane says. “Whereas in cannabis, it’s clearly quite recent. It’s an incomplete evolution of the Y chromosome, and it’s ongoing, but what that does is enable us to study some things that happening recently [in the plant’s evolution].” “Feminized seeds [in cannabis] is a trait that has evolved very recently, and there are some varieties that are hermaphrodites, and others that are male and female. It’s so recent that it hasn’t become fixed in the whole species,” he says, which may explain why cannabis seeds are so difficult to sex. His 18-month-old CGRI research of cannabis has already helped accelerate the understanding of the plant. One of Kane’s students recently graduated with one of the first PhDs in cannabis, and they are doing research to analyze the sequence of 67 genomes found by both Kane’s lab, and other labs. Kane says, “That really opened the door to understanding the species and how lineages are evolving,” he says.

The sequencing work will also lead to much easier, faster, cheaper and more reliable testing of the plant for THC levels, CBD, and other active compounds. “Another thing that surprised me is we actually don’t know why these plants evolved these compounds,” explains Kane. “We have a lot of ideas, but nobody has really demonstrated what these plants do with these compounds in the wild, what benefit these compounds provide for the plants, and why they make such a diversity of compounds.” His theory about the purpose of these compounds is that they may serve to attract mammalian herbivores in order to disperse the seed. “We have no idea, and to me it’s surprising that it’s such an important plant, used medically for thousands of years, and we don’t really know why the plant makes these compounds.” The work on crossing breeding to create various strains of cannabis for recreational use, usually attributed to California growers in the mid-60s, gives scientists like Kane many interesting questions, and potentially interesting ideas, regarding what is really going on within the plant, he says. “Very little of it has been formally published or quantified. So it’s been a lot of it anecdotal stories where someone says ‘Hey I noticed this’ or something, but those observations haven’t been followed up on rigorously,” Kane says. “Now it’s time to follow up on those things and see what is going on with all of them.” In Kane’s lab, on the campus of a federally funded university not able to allow work on a schedule 1 narcotic, he is only allowed to grow low THC cannabis. To keep his work clearly on the right side of the law, and he defaults to these conservatively low THC varieties in the studies. “What that means is that we can’t really do many of the kinds of studies that we would like to be able to do,” he says.

Other studies would include collaborations with other scientists in psychology and neuroscience, to understand the neurological effects of cannabis and its other properties. “We can exchange information and exchange ideas, and if I know something about the genetics, and they provide me information about some various traits, I could probably place things onto the genetic map,” he says. He says that, for example, right now people are providing him information on all kinds of medical and recreational varieties of cannabis, which is enabling him to place of a lot of interesting traits onto the genetic map that he couldn’t directly assess himself. “But that means I have a lot less control over it because I can’t directly quantify these traits myself, and I have to rely on other people to provide that information.” Dr. Kane finishes by explaining that as they put the cannabis genome together and associate some of the different traits, they will publish a fully mapped genome, placing all of the sequences onto the chromosomes. This will be a momentous occasion when it arrives, and a report on their process and progress of the mapping will publish soon in a scientific journal, but for now, it’s one step at a time. “As far as any ‘A-ha!’ moments, I expect a lot of smaller steps that build on each other,” Kane predicts. “Much of what we are doing now is building tools to understand the plant better. Once we do that, I’m sure people will be applying it in all kinds of different ways, and we will finally be able to understand the Y chromosome evolution and the origins of that important trait.”

“Much of what we are doing now is building tools to understand the plant better. Once we do that, I’m sure people will be applying it in all kinds of different ways” - Dr. Nolan Kane ISSUE 01 THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

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The Roller Coaster of Cannabis Business Licensing

ICENSING YOUR cannabis business – whether serving the recreational side or medical side or both – is still under construction in many states as the industry grows. But the process is slowly changing and adapting to this new industry, and, even more slowly, getting simpler and easier. The licensing process for a cannabis business may be complicated, but in the end it is essentially an endorsement of a business by the state’s department of revenue. Licenses are issued for any cannabis business that operates as a producer, processor, wholesaler or retailer. The eligibility is usually determined by a point system (based on scores after a review of business criteria (type of security, background checks, operation plan, financial investigation), or by rules enacted in tandem with legalization (such as Measure 91 in Oregon). The licensing process can take from six months to a year or more from start to finish, depending on the state. This lengthy process can take the wind out of the sails of

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even the strongest businesses, which is why many are now hiring consultants to help them navigate the tricky ins and outs successfully. Avis Bulbulyan, CEO of Bulbulyan Consulting Group, is a full service cannabis industry consultant, and one of the leading consulting firms in the cannabis business that knows the drill well. In January, 2013, Avis worked with a group to prepare and submit for a license in Massachusetts, where his client was able to score highest on the point system used in that state, being awarded three out of the three available licenses. Bulbulyan says the licensing process in Massachusetts generally takes over a year in Maryland by the time the state approves a license. Hawaii announced recently they will accept applications beginning in mid-January and award winners in April. New York is the fastest, he says, By the time everything is finalized and the application is accepted in New York, it’s less than two months, but it really


depends on the state. An applicant needs to start as soon as possible no matter what state.” There are trap doors everywhere in this young industry, “The licensing process can be very difficult,” explains Chelsey Joseph, contract consultant for the nationally recognized cannabis consulting firm, Denver Relief Consulting. Joseph has assisted with cannabis business license applications in Canada, Colorado, Connecticutt, D.C., Florida, Illinois Massachusetts, Nevada and Washington, “It can also be very self-discovering,” she says. Bulbulyan says that the toughest piece of the puzzle for applicants is often property acquisition. “That, and getting the client to the point of really understanding the amount of capital that is needed to participate in this industry,” he says, “Initially they don’t think it’s a heavy lift.” For example, he says, in Maryland, the landlord of a property that was being looked at by a dispensary developer wanted $200,000 to just hold the property until





Tips about getting a license from Avis Bulbulyan, CEO, Bulbulyan Consulting Group a decision about licensing was given. Bulbulyan says a common mistake for applicants is believing they can, on their own, compete for a license against an organization of twenty or more people who are lined up with attorneys and supported by lobbyists. “You can be the jack of all trades in the cannabis business,” he says, “But that’s not going to go over well on the application. I don’t know of any group that got a license that didn’t have a lobbyist on their side, so I focus on lobbying from the beginning.” Lobbyists help work through zoning rules and other ordinances, among other things, that may affect the availability of the land for use as a dispensary. Peter Schweda, co-founder and master grower at Natural Care Consulting, who operates a large, licensed cultivation center in Illinois, says that people wanting to get licenses don’t think about lawyers or lobbyists, because there is a well-known expense related to working with those professionals. “But quickly you learn that you definitely need to have a lobbyist, because you get tired of false information from the press,” he says. “Everyone has an opinion, and the information you get from your lobbyists or attorneys, I keep saying, is never 100% accurate, but it’s the most accurate information that you are going to be able to obtain.” He says that’s because lawyers are trained to sift through stuff in the process that is not valid, and latch onto the points that are more critical to succeeding in the licensing process. “I quickly learned that lobbyists and lawyers were worth the money,” he says, “Even though the costs are shocking at first.” Schweda explains an applicant should be willing to spend $500,000 to $1 million in consulting fees to those lawyers and consultants.

Understand your financial requirements.

Understand what kind of organization you are putting together.

Understand what you want to accomplish. Are you going for one license or more than one, to take over the state or the region?

Designate one person as your point person. You don’t want “too many cooks in the kitchen.” Background checks of owners and employees can be one of the real sticking points during the licensing process as well, where problems can surface from a shadowy past in cannabis business, creating an obstacle. “Many of these growers today have a dirty background of some kind,” Schweda says. He says that he had several people among his list of employees who didn’t even pass an initial background check. “We started asking them before attempting to get a license, ‘Was there any time in your life that you were arrested? Let’s start with a speeding ticket. Let’s talk about child support’”, he says. Sometimes they will respond with a story about getting busted with a joint at a concert. “And they’ll say ‘Oh, but that was nothing.’

Start with your lobbyist and be upfront with them. You want a comfort level with them, and name recognition, because when licensing officials review those applications, the names that they are familiar with get more interest and more advice. No, that wasn’t nothing. That means everything in this process. So I say to those ‘Nice to meet you. Have a good day. Goodbye.’” In the final analysis, the licensing roller coaster is fundamentally the same as in any other industry, Schweda says, “There is no way around it. If you want to be a real serious competitor and have a serious chance of achieving your goal of getting your license, you have to pay attention to the laws, and have the ability to go with the ebb and flow of challenges along the way. “This is not rocket science,” Joseph says, “Retail and agriculture have been around for years and there is really nothing new here. It’s just that the cannabis industry is so new.”

“This is not rocket science, retail and agriculture have been around for years and there is really nothing new here.” ISSUE 01 THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

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A Midsummer Night’s Blue Dream


Kentucky’s High Hopes For Self-Snitching In Franklin County, Kentucky, the sheriff’s office is offering “drug dealers” a way to corner the market and get rid of rivals. In what seems like a trap designed to catch only the most gullible among us, a flyer was posted to their Facebook asking merchants of the black market to turn in their competition via mail or text. The pot leaf plastered form looks completely unserious, aside from the fact that they’re asking for a lot of personal information. This tactic – playing off the hugely misguided notion that cannabis users and the people who sell it are spineless rats – has been used by law enforcement elsewhere in the US, and exposes Franklin County’s finest for their ineptitude, laziness, and overall misunderstanding of the community they purportedly serve.

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Noted wordsmith and bane of high school students everywhere William Shakespeare, may have enjoyed a higher inspiration from our dear friend, Mary Jane. Gas chromatography mass spectrometry analysis by University of Witwatersrand has revealed residues of cannabis (and coca leaf) on pipe shards excavated from the playwright’s garden in Stratford-upon-Avon. Some experts dispute that the bard would have never used cannabis, blaming the pipes on dastardly neighbor boys, but the evidence is pretty clear. Cannabis is known as a friendly muse that enhances artistic minds and it’s apparently maintained this reputation diligently for centuries, even throughout the stuffy high-society of Victorian England.

Cannabis With No Memory Loss? What was that again? Research done in Barcelona has shed new light on the ways THC interacts with neural receptors and produces certain effects. It turns out cannabinoid and serotonin receptors are part of the same structure – a heteromer – and that many of the negative side-effects associated with cannabis such as short-term memory loss, are actually due

to the serotonin receptor. By blocking this pathway in mice, effectively severing the connection between the two receptors, it was found that the THC still exhibited medicinal benefits, such as anti-nausea and pain relief with no psychoactivity, anxiety, or memory problems.

Mexican Pot Farms Get A Modification A raid in the Mexican state of Jalisco has uncovered over 7,000 pot plants and landed twenty-five people in jail. The authorities found three greenhouses crammed full of clones and what they described as ‘genetically modified marijuana’. The alleged GMO grass had over 10% THC compared to the apparent Mexican norm of 3%. While it is not out of the realm of possibility, it seems unlikely that the cartels have funded research into DNA-splicing. Instead, better genetics from the U.S. and Europe, thanks to selective breeding along with more sophisticated grow techniques, are the likely culprits for the potent mota.

Snoop Dogg No Longer Down With S-weed-en The Doggfather was detained for a short time in Uppsala, Sweden after a performance, and forced to submit a urine sample to police due to suspicions he might have been driving under the influence. Sweden’s draconian anti-drug laws allow for search of property, and they can conduct compulsory pee tests simply over the suspicion that one might be having a good time with the aid of foreign substances. This didn’t sit well with Snoop who, being released shortly after, posted an onslaught of online videos accusing the Swedish police of racial profiling and swearing to never to return there. ISSUE 01 THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

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Cannabis Effects on Sperm:



The Research to Date and How to Encourage Better Science

ANNABIS APPEARS to have negative effects on sperm,

which can lead to the failure of a man to impregnate a woman. Sperm with an abnormal size, shape, or speed may have a reduced chance of reaching and penetrating the egg. Some studies indicate that Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) causes sperm to swim too quickly and too erratically.

Burkman said research she conducted in 2003 showed the velocity and amount of vigorous swimming of sperm is actually comparatively high in cannabis smokers. “It is possible that the elevated, vigorous hyperactivity may lead to early sperm burnout,” said Burkman.

Dr. Lani Burkman, associate professor emerita of gynecology at the State University of New York at Buffalo’s School of Medicine and founder of LifeCell Dx, a Buffalo fertility clinic, has been researching the effects of cannabinoids on reproductive health for over ten years. She said doctors need to ask more “probing” questions about cannabis use.

Dr. Allan Pacey, professor of andrology (the study of diseases and functions unique to males) at the University of Sheffield in the United Kingdom, published a survey in 2014 on the lifestyle choices of 2,249 men at 14 fertility clinics in the UK. Data indicated men who smoke cannabis have irregularly sized and shaped sperm.

“They don’t have any questionnaires to ask if a patient has used cannabis, in what form, and (whether the woman) had a miscarriage,” said Burkman.

“[Packaging of DNA in the sperm head] is a normal process which happens as sperm are created. [Cannabis use appears to have] influenced the eventual size and shape of the sperm head,” said Pacey.

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Burkman says her clinic requires men who are trying to get their partner pregnant stop cannabis use and take a year to recover.

She also states that eggs are less vulnerable to harm than male reproductive organs.

“THC is stored in fat cells. When you exercise, fat cells get reduced in size and number. They release THC into the blood system. It may feel for a while like you’re smoking again,” said Burkman.

“For the most part, eggs are at rest. It is hard to damage them. Men are constantly reproducing sperm, but there are ways to cleanse the male reproductive system that would not be burdensome for most men. One example is discontinuing drug use…before trying to conceive,” says Daniels.

Burkman recommends six months of heavy exercise followed by two full sperm maturation cycles (two and a half months each) to restore sperm quality. Interpreting data about cannabis and reproductive health is a political act. Many individuals who work with businesses, organizations, and educational institutions question the validity of past studies. Ian James, vice president of business development at Canna Advisors, a Boulder-based consulting firm that helps cannabis-related business secure licenses Says, “When you talk about the research that’s dated [from the 1960s and 1970s], you ask, what was the government trying to achieve? It was focused on prohibition.” Dr. Carl Hart, associate professor of psychology and psychiatry at Columbia University, who has conducted research on drugs that people commonly abuse, said, “My concern is that the conclusions drawn about the effects of specific drugs are unjustifiably negative.” Lynn Paltrow, Executive Director of National Advocates for Pregnant Women, a New York-based nonprofit that protects the rights of pregnant and parenting women, says the fact that cannabis remains illegal under federal law makes it hard to discuss the drug’s effects.

Burkman said the best way to study the effects of cannabis on reproductive health would be to implement studies on men and women in different age groups of reproductive age who use cannabis, “from teenagers all the way up to women who are 45 and men who are 70.” Burkman said it is important that studies focus on the moments leading up to fertilization. “As the sperm are passing through her cervix, uterus, and then ovary, if she’s using cannabis too, the sperm get washed with a second dose of cannabinoids,” said Burkman. Burkman says studies should look at how sperm affected by cannabis swim, focusing on whether they pursue a direct, speedy route to the egg. “The egg cell has a cover on it called the zona,” said Burkman. “The acrosome, a cap on the sperm head, releases chemicals which dissolve through the zona. The sperm then gets through and touches the egg cell. The egg pulls that sperm inside. That’s when fertilization has happened,” said Burkman.

“In an environment in which drugs are criminalized, people who use drugs are stigmatized,” said Paltrow.

Tom Angell, chairman of Marijuana Majority, a D.C.-based advocacy group for cannabis legalization says, “Scare tactics don’t work. We need to have access to good, unbiased information that keeps people safe.”

She expressed concern that research about the effects of cannabis on reproductive health is “often reported without any sense of awareness of how data will be politicized in a highly sensitive environment.”

Sara Arnold, co-founder of The Family Law & Cannabis Alliance, a Massachusetts-based organization that provides non-legal advice about cannabis and family law, agreed.

Cindy Daniels, professor of political science at Rutgers University and author of the 2006 book “Exposing Men: The Science and Politics of Male Reproduction,” says entities that conduct research about cannabis’ effects on reproductive health can act responsibly by explaining what types of studies are needed and what data may reveal.

“Any change that would allow cannabis to be studied in terms of its current and historical uses would be helpful. Scientific inquiry, especially about the benefits of cannabis, has been stifled thus far,” said Arnold.

“Drugs can damage sperm but not negatively impact male fertility. It takes fairly big studies to track cannabis use and its reproductive outcomes,” said Daniels. She says she would be cautious in warning about the effects of drug use. “We’ve exaggerated the negative effects of female drug use, especially occasional or casual drug use. For example, with alcohol, if a woman has a glass of wine but [eats at the same time and] is well nourished, there are not severe negative effects,” said Daniels.

“My concern is that the conclusions drawn about the effects of specific drugs are unjustifiably negative.” Dr. Carl Hart, Associate Professor of Psychology and Psychiatry at Cholumbia University ISSUE 01 THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

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Keeping It Clean


Avoiding Toxins in Cannabis` ITH MORE nutrient manufacturers and products

appearing on the shelves at every visit to the local garden supply store, it is of the utmost importance a grow enthusiast does their homework to pick the safest and most efficacious plant material for consumables. Not all of these products are created equal, and not all are marketed for use on consumable crops that need to be safe and free of contaminants. Our goal is by the end of this reading, many will be better informed about how to choose the right nutrients and additives for their cannabis grow, based upon their efficaciousness, purity, and safety. Many already operating in states that have legalization bills on the books have grown quite accustom to the stringent (and rightfully so) testing parameters for final product. These tests not only provide a glimpse at potency and cannabinoid/terpenoid content, but also screen for contaminants (i.e. pesticides, heavy metals, microbial contamination, pests and foreign matter, etc.) While states are still enacting more specific testing parameters, it’s important to note that testing for toxic heavy metals will be gaining ever-increasing scrutiny. Why would toxic heavy metals (i.e. Cadmium, Chromium, Lead, Mercury, Arsenic, etc.) be appearing in our cannabis? A lesser-known fact: Many nutrients and additives, both inorganic and organic, that are currently being applied to plants frequently around the globe, are in fact a hidden source of toxic heavy metals. A quick search on databases provided by state-specific agricultural departments (free and accessible to anyone) yields some surprising results regarding commonly used nutrients and additives, indicating the true content of some “high-grade” products. There are various grades of elements available to nutrient manufacturers and obviously they, and you, get what they paid for. A majority of nutrient companies use stock constituents that are considered “agricultural grade”. This means less testing and less requirements are mandated – often resulting in a lower quality product, possibly containing contaminants. This isn’t a major issue when using fertilizers on a rose garden, but we’re now talking about consumable and smokeable crops. While these less-than-stringent guidelines are great for some nutrient manufacturers’ bottom lines, the long-term health effects for those consuming the final product grown with these products is yet to be ascertained. We do however know the effects of direct exposure to toxic heavy metals, which includes renal damage, anemia, seizure, coma,

Alzheimer’s disease, Wilson’s disease, and cancer, just to name a few. What can be done to ensure that a garden is fit for consumption while providing the best nutrition for the plants? For starters, growers can research the conditions and standards of the manufacturing facilities involved in making the products. What equipment do they mix their chemicals with? Which filtration methods do they use? What are the quality control/assurance measures in place? There are third party standards and protocols that manufacturing facilities can meet, such as those regulated by the International Organization for Standardization. They issue issue ISO Certification, such as ISO 9001, a Quality Management System ensuring standardized quality across all areas of the business including facilities, people, training, services and equipment; ISO 14001 for an Environmental Management System, providing assurance that environmental impact is being measured; and ISO 13485, certifying the manufacture and supply of chemicals meets the requirements of medical components for healthcare customers. Next, look at the grade of materials being used in their manufacturing process. Although agricultural grade material may be more to likely contain contaminants in the form of toxic heavy metals, this isn’t the only culprit to look out for. Yes, “organic” products often have some of the highest heavy metal content – particularly bat guano, a notorious heavy metal accumulator. Be sure the nutrient manufacturer has registered their heavy metals report with organizations such as AAPFCO (Association of American Plant Food Control Officials to qualify acceptable levels. If excessive heavy metals are discovered in a grower’s current nutrient regimen, a serious reassessment of cost versus benefit needs to occur, factoring in human health. As more states begin to wise up to legalization, we will begin to see more mandatory testing requirements surface where consumable products are concerned, particularly around toxic heavy metal content. Once this occurs, a significant shift will occur within the cannabis cultivation community, and we’ll begin to see safe product labels for our plants indicating pharmaceutical grade quality, currently upheld in more typical medical manufacturing and much like pharmaceutical grade compounds produced for human consumption.

“Many nutrients and additives, both inorganic and organic, that are currently being applied to plants frequently around the globe, are in fact a hidden source of toxic heavy metals.” ISSUE 01 THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

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Cannabis Funding

O I have to admit, I have never owned stock in my life. Some-

thing about the whole system just seems so random, arbitrary, and confusing. This month I spent time talking to some of the bright lights in venture capital and asset management who have been targeting cannabis opportunities for investors. According to ArcView’s Market Report (January 2015) the industry expanded by a whopping 74% in 2014—with even the most conservative estimates predicting even more growth in the future. That makes cannabis the fastest-growing industry in the U.S. by about a mile, and an increasingly tempting industry for investors and investment firms. Aside from the fact that it is inherently risky, there is significantly less competition for investors in cannabis than in other cutting-edge industries, and there are significant returns to be made. The opportunity of healthy profits looks even better when combined with the ”fringe benefit of being in the history books as instrumental in ending prohibition,” according to Anthony Davis of Anslinger Capital. Demand is high, and still growing, and there are a lot of passionate entrepreneurs ready to capitalize. The opportunity for investors is clear—and the value proposition grows clearer every day as publically traded cannabis companies gain traction. Company valuations are becoming both more realistic, with higher numbers, and the quality of management teams is on an upswing. As Emily Paxhia of Poseidon shared with me in a phone interview, “The time is now. [Investors] are never

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again going to find the deals at the price points that we are seeing. The talent, drive and passion of the founders entering the market now really has us excited about the future of the industry.” The barriers are equally clear: cannabis is still illegal at the federal level. The role of regulation in creating the market varies wildly from state to state. There are challenges in banking and in access to capital because of this uncertainty. “It’s such a bizarre paradox to have states calling their own shots while on the federal side of things this is still illegal. There are a lot of risks associated with that. There are a lot of unknowns,” said Jessica Geran of Dutchess Capital, “what it really comes down to is the regulations, number one, and the fact that this is still considered an illegal drug, whether it’s medical or adult use. I could go on and on about the variables, but once you sign that check it’s a risk. You cross your fingers and hope for the best. We do tons of due diligence to make sure that we can mitigate as much of the unknown as possible.” Another major barrier is the sluggish rate of change in the social conversation around cannabis, especially for adult use. “Everyone needs to start talking about it, and come out of the closet,” said Davis. “We are taking an industry that has a really negative connotation and demonstrating that it’s a good community. We aren’t taught how to do that in school. It’s really challenging to start organizations with this negative connotation. To walk into family firms and ask for million-dollar investments in cannabis, you get looked at like you are crazy. People are afraid about

the recreational side, and it’s so much less dangerous than alcohol.”


Geran sees the change that is taking place: “In regards to the federal aspect of it, this thing is moving so well. The toothpaste is out of the tube. We have to get people to understand that the entrepreneurial type, the employee, the artist, the mom, the dad, the patient… everyone is a potential customer.”


The long and short of it is that venture capital is beginning to make major moves in cannabis. For consumers, this means an expansion of the products available as well as innovation, collaboration and the growth of the industry as a whole. It means that investors have an opportunity right now to make the history books. And it means that I am investing my next paycheck with one—if not all—of these smart, savvy firms, thanks to the advice from Morgan Paxhia of Poseidon: “For those who are looking to get in, funds exist for a reason. It’s a lot of work. There’s so much passion. It’s a really fun industry, and it’s a really great time to get involved.”

Company Profiles THE NEWCOMERS


Poseidon Asset Management is a Californiabased cannabis hedge fund that offers wealth management services and invests in innovative, cutting edge cannabis businesses. They offer a significant service in their exhaustive due diligence. According to the company manifesto, “investing in this industry demands exponentially more time and energy than most of our clients would prefer. We aim to remove this “friction” by providing our clients with access to our carefully curated portfolio focusing on the cannabis industry.” Co-founded by Morgan and Emily Paxhia (a brother and sister team), Poseidon is poised to exploit market dislocations—the real undervaluation of companies in the industry. Both Morgan and Emily are world-class competitive sailors, and they are ready to ride this wave all the way. Poseidon is looking to be a visionary fund in the industry—and they have a strong vision. “Cannabis will bring in new technologies and efficiencies to a drought-stricken California and beyond,” said Morgan in a telephone interview. “Farming 2.0 will come out of this movement.”


Dutchess Capital is a manager of global investment funds. Founded in 1996, they have made over 400 investments globally—with a total transaction value exceeding $2 billion. Dutchess is not solely focused on cannabis, offering services to start-ups, pre-IPO (initial public offering) businesses, and publically traded companies. This diversified fund has been actively investing in the industry since 2012. According to their website, “Dutchess portfolio companies are uniquely positioned to benefit with respect to the latest data, trends, products, services and ever changing regulatory environment. Further, in the quest for earnings growth, our legalized cannabis portfolio companies have successfully engaged in cross-pollinating with one another, which have resulted in business agreements, strategic partnerships or joint ventures.” Dutchess Capital brings global experience and risk management and expertise to the table. Many investors are attracted by the chance to get their toes wet in the cannabis sea while still investing in other industries. Jessica Geran, Head of Corporate Finance, said “This is the riskiest industry that we’ve ever been involved in— but there has never been an industry, or an opportunity, like it. We were very early on the scene. Dutchess got into it really as a fun little side project…then after some serious research and a lot of due diligence, we realized the scope of where this could go: the actual size of the potential market, and the fact that there weren’t a lot of other investors in it.”

Anslinger Capital, founded in May 2015, is an early stage venture capital fund focused on the emerging cannabis industry. Ansligner is based in Winter Park, Florida with offices in Seattle, Washington and has already completed 3 investments. Co-Founder Anthony Davis is a successful serial entrepreneur who has a proven track record of founding startups in the technology sector. After his recent stint as the CEO of Leafly (“the world’s cannabis information resource”), Davis and partners Christopher Male and Brett Gellein founded Anslinger Capital to create the future of the industry—and to make money. “I am an unapologetic capitalist. People never know how to react when I say this, my partners get a kick out of it—but I’m not joking,” said Davis during a telephone interview, “I use my capitalism for really good things. I am a major donor to three non-profits in the Seattle area and do a lot of advising to and for the startup community. I look for things that make a lot of money, so that I can afford to keep giving. There’s a ton of money to be had in the cannabis industry.”

“This is the riskiest industry that we’ve ever been involved in, but there has never been an industry, or an opportunity, like it.” ISSUE 01 THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

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Living with Disability: Understanding Cripple Punk Culture



ISABLED PEOPLE have the ironic fate of being simultaneously watched and ignored. In Seattle, when the bus stops to lower the ramp for someone with a wheelchair, it is not uncommon to hear some commuter sigh audibly, and drop their eyes to their phones when the individual finally boards the bus to get situated. In the US, it seems people want to watch and judge, more than smile, accept, or even help. With so little representation in TV or movies, it’s really no wonder that we are such objects of interest to the average bystander.

“They put together a punk philosophy for the disabled folks who are simply fed up with trying to fit everybody’s expectations.”

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We are watched and monitored by a skeptical public. It seems everyone wants to keep tabs on us to safeguard their tax dollars at work and to make sure we’re not all scamming our way to the top. Those with invisible disabilities such as chronic fatigue syndrome and Crohn’s disease have been reporting harassment from bystanders for “not being really handicapped.” Many seem to think a wheelchair is the sign of a bonafide, bluestar disabled person. Perhaps this policing of handicapped folks is meant for the public good, when really, it is simply harassment. Much of the tension comes from the mythos of the ‘Good Cripple’. Similar to the ‘Magic Negro’ archetype, the Good Cripple is always smiling, patient, compassionate, selfless, and because of this, loveable. Good examples of this might be Tiny Tim, who is pitiful yet adorable - or Professor X, whose immense mental powers trivialize his physical difficulties. However, when one is crippled by illness or injury, it is far from a walk in the park. It takes years to find some degree of acceptance, and many people struggle to find it, battling through their lives with rage, depression, or substance abuse issues (Think House, the polar opposite of the Good Cripple). A lifetime of intense struggle is difficult for all but the most resilient soul. Many able-bodied folks hear of such struggles and try to “fix” them by recommending yoga, exercise, whole foods, alternative medicines, and so on. Sometimes it seems like it will never stop. This constant onslaught of “Have you tried…?” begins to feel like an interrogation and a massive invasion of privacy. After all, this is our personal medical history. It’s about time we handicapped folks reclaim our dignity, our freedom, and our individuality.

Physically disabled people wanting to be a part of the movement who are uncomfortable using the slur may refer to it as “cpunk”

In this vein, the Cripple Punk movement was born on Tumblr. User ffsshh, who was fed up with experiencing ableism, laid the groundwork for a new kind of movement for the physically disabled, which doesn’t give a shit about social expectations or pandering to able-bodied observers for pity and adoration. They put together a punk philosophy for the disabled folks who are simply fed up with trying to fit everybody’s expectations. This is more than just folks with disabilities wearing tattered jeans and black hoodies. It’s a philosophy that encourages the handicapped to deal with their limitations in their own way, at their own pace, and with their own personal style. It builds confidence to battle one’s daily struggles, and acts as armor against the ableist attitudes that keep striving to fit the disabled into an ableist mold. The Cripple Punk ethos states they’re for the bitter cripple, the cripple who smokes or drinks, the cripple who doesn’t have the wherewithal to be an inspiration, the cripple who hasn’t “tried everything” or who struggles with denial, anger, or addiction. Cpunk fights internalized ableism, fully supporting those struggling with it. It provokes important conversations with the able-bodied: are handicapped people obliged to smile all the time? Is it improper to ask a disabled stranger about his/ her/their medical history? Is it insulting to respond to uncomfortable facts of disability with ‘Have you tried yoga/reiki/crystal healing?’ The cpunk movement has gained a lot of attention on Tumblr and is beginning to grow beyond it. Commenting on the impact of their work, ffsshh said, “I’m just really happy & proud of how much cripple punk has grown & how many people have

Able-bodied people may never use uncensored slurs themselves (such as cripple, a reclaimed slur) but never censor our language

been touched by it.” In time, hopefully it will help more and more people be free to just be themselves, and this subculture will blossom into a beautiful punk flower. Kick ass fellow cripples, and just do ‘you.’

RULES ‘Cripple’ is a negative slur to many disabled individuals, so refrain from using it if you are not disabled.

Cripple punk is not conditional on things like mobility aids & “functioning levels”

Always listen to those with different physical disabilities & different intersections than yourself. Do not speak over them.

Disabled people do not need to personally identify with the words “cripple” or “punk” individually to be a part of cripple punk.

Able-bodied people wishing to spread the message may only ever amplify the voices of the disabled


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Solvent Free “Fresh Frozen” Live Resin Cannabis Concentrates



HGH Extractions

FLAVOR We were excited to fire up my Nectar Collector dab kit and give these fresh frozen live resins from HGH Extractions a test drive. All tasty and sweet, there was a wide range of fruitiness for such clean product. Each one a treat in its own right, they all had that hint of funkiness that the OG strain is famous for.

PROVIDED BY: • HGH Extractions




We sampled three live resins: Northern Lights, The Wizard of Oz (part of their sub brand Miss Nug Run), and Alpha Omega OG. Of these, the NL appears most translucent, while the others have a light green tint. Translucence is achieved when flowers are fresh frozen immediately and not allowed to cure.

The owner of HGH was originally a grower, and in collaboration with BAMF Extractions they won fifteen High Times Cannabis Cup Awards and the top award at Chalice last year. All HGH Extractions are made “fresh frozen” from flowers they grow in their garden.

All three of the HGH Extraction concentrates were indica dominant, and Alpha Omega was the heaviest, Miss Nug Run was the lightest, and the Wizard of Oz had a moderate effect. Unlike the other two, Alpha Omega OG knocked us out cold.

AROMA AVAILABLE AT • Grace, West LA • The Famous Healers, Hollywood • The Weed, Studio City • Bonafide Collective, Spring Valley • SD Best Meds, San Diego • Cookies SF, San Francisco

All three from HGH carry that distinctive OG fragrance. Some shy away from concentrates because some individual qualities of the flower may be lost during extraction, but this still smells like the flower even after the extraction process.

MEDICINAL BENEFITS The Alpha Omega OG can be an effective sleep aid, and for those with a high indica tolerance it appears to work well for body pain. All three concentrates we tried from HGH had a relaxing effect, indicating potential for easing the symptoms of an anxiety episode. ISSUE 01 THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

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End 420 Shame Cannabis Saved My Daughter’s Life T FIVE months old, Emily experienced her

first seizure. For the next ten and a half years, her father Ray Mirzabegian watched helplessly as she endured thousands of them.



Even Emily’s doctors are amazed at her progress. Before cannabis oil, Emily spent most of her life inside a hosptal trying to control her uncontrollable seizures. Since Charlotte’s Web, she has not set foot inside of a hospital.

Nothing seemed to help. Emily suffers from Dravet syndrome: a rare and catastrophic form of intractable epilepsy that begins in infancy. Children with Dravet syndrome do not outgrow their affliction, and it affects every aspect of their daily lives from language development to motor skills.

There are thousands of children just like Emily who are struggling with conditions that cannot be treated using legal medicine. And yet, the one naturally occurring substance that has shown to help is associated with shame.

It has now been more than 24 months since Emily first tried Charlotte’s Web and her results are astounding. Her seizures have dropped by 60% and in just one month from now, she will be free from all pharmaceutical seizure medications. “Nothing in the last ten years has helped Emily half as much as the CBD oil,” says Ray.

For Ray, who has seen cannabis work first hand, there is only one thing he wants everyone to know. “CBD saved my daughter’s life.”

The issue for many parents and patients desperate for an answer is twofold: the incompleteness of the medical information available, as well as Emily tried 13 different medications, stem cell shots and strict diets, deeply ingrained social stereotypes of intoxicated potheads surrounded but she continued to suffer an average 45 seizures a month, and at times by billowing smoke. To the uninitiated, the value of cannabis is clouded over 100 seizures a day. “Not only were Emily’s treatments ineffective in uncertainty. Rather than start from neutral, at reducing her seizures,” Ray tells DOPE, thoughts on cannabis usually begin in the “they caused even more damage—impairing “ There is an enduring negative and then must be overcome with her learning, behavioral and social skills.” powerful stories or personal experience. belief that cannabis use Over the years, Ray became increasingly is morally wrong and There is an enduring belief that cannabis desperate for a solution to his daughter’s that cannabis users are use is morally wrong and that cannabis illness. It was not until 2012, when he users are irresponsible stoners. The stumbled upon a Discovery Channel irresponsible stoners. truth is a far different story. documentary about cannabidiol (CBD), The truth is a far that Ray and Emily saw their first glimpse different story. “ Over 12,000 patients have begun using of hope. One year later, Dr. Sanjay Gupta Charlotte’s Web, and according to the Epilepsy aired his documentary Weed on CNN. Foundation of Colorado, 85 percent of the initial cohort of children experienced a reduction of seizures by 50 To a father desperate to save his daughter, cannabis sounded like a miracle cure for Dravet syndrome. If the high-CBD oil named Charlotte’s percent or more. Unfortunately, until the U.S declassifies cannabis as a Schedule I controlled substance, which indicates that it has no medical Web could help Charlotte Figi reduce her seizures from 300 a week benefits, official clinical trials regarding its benefits are at a standstill. to two or three a month, then maybe it could help Emily. Immediately, Ray made it his mission to uncover the truth about cannabis. To date, most formally recognized studies on cannabis set out to show how harmful cannabis is, rather than studying its benefits; this CBD is one of over 60 compounds found within cannabis. Unlike THC, is illogical. You can study one side without the other. Studies have the active ingredient that causes a high, CBD is non-psychoactive, and proven that over-consuming water can have deadly consequences, but has many potential medical applications. Before the documentaries, studies have also shown how important it is to stay properly hydrated. Ray had an entirely different perception about cannabis. “I just thought While the medical community cannot lawfully study the benefits of it was something that would make you high and relaxed,” he says. cannabis use, the volume of anecdotal evidence is overwhelming. Then suddenly, he discovered that cannabis was so much more.

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Help us end cannabis shame by sharing your story online using the hashtag #End420Shame. It is time we brought cannabis out of the basement and into the light.

The Realm of Caring™ (ROC) Foundation is a 501c3 nonprofit organization dedicated to providing a better quality of life for those affected by disorders and diseases. Founded by the Stanley Brothers in Colorado, who discovered Charlotte’s Web, their goal is to advocate for the use of cannabinoid products. They focus on research, education, advocacy, and life improvement through the use of cannabis. Learn more at ISSUE 01 THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

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Energy Reduction INDOOR CANNABIS cultivation is the most unsustainable part of the cannabis cultivation process. Indoor grows use more than their share of the energy grid, and can pay extremely high electricity bills due to the large amount used, and it doesn’t take too many 1,000 watt lights to create a overwhelming monthly expense. How does a $10,000-$20,000 monthly bill sound to you? The number of lights needed for many commercial cultivation operations produce huge bills like this often. Worse than high bills, the environmental impact is also a consideration. If production costs are low, business owners can reduce how much it retails for, and this gives them an edge over their competitors. Let’s look at why so much energy is used and how it is possible to lower this amount.

THE FIRST ISSUE: LIGHTING Metal Halide (HID) and High Pressure Sodium (HPS) lighting is still the most widely used lighting for indoor cannabis cultivation. A large portion of these lights are 1,000 watts each. Place fifty of these or more into one location, run some simple math and it’s obvious this is a big problem. Using fifty HPS lights can burn at least 50,000 watts of energy at once, and this doesn’t account for standard lights, A/C, heaters, dehumidifiers, fans, pumps, and all the other electrical items many grows require.

THE SECOND ISSUE: HVAC High wattage lighting produces a lot of heat, which can be your enemy or your friend, depending on climate and type of structure. Is it well insulated? Does it have a lot of direct sunlight? If located in a cold climate, the heat from the lights can be used to heat the grow room in place of running heaters, but in most situations the heat from the lights will be fought with cold air from the A/C.

Let’s look at some of the ways that this expense and energy usage can be reduced, without sacrificing the garden. The very first item to consider is your lighting source. There are several choices available to us today; LED, Plasma, fluorescent, or natural lighting are all options. LED lighting can reliably cut your energy used on lighting in half. LED lighting also doesn’t produce heat like HID and HPS, so your A/C will work less. Seems like a win-win doesn’t? LED lighting is more expensive. The 1,000 watt lights are cheaper up front, but will cost more over time. LED may produce less dense flower structure and a lowered yield, but potency doesn’t seem to be as affected, and everyone has slightly different results depending on strain. If accustomed to the results that high wattage lights produce, switching to LED may be more difficult. I’ve produced an average of 2 grams of finished flower per watt used, growing in a soil medium without fertilizers and the one issue I experience is buds can be less dense and a little airy. This caused a few people, accustomed to dense flowers produced under HPS lighting, to ask ‘why’. However, HPS lighting not only makes A/C units have to use more energy, it also produces lower average yields, with only 1/2 gram produced per wattage used. To sum it up, HPS lighting produces great buds, but in the end it is not very sustainable. Another option to reduce your lighting bill is to turn them off. It is possible to grow plants in a vegetative state by having the lights on for 30 minutes, off for 30, repeated multiple times a day. In the flower room, a minimum of 6 hours a day will produce decent flowers. This does reduce the overall harvest amount, but it also reduces your lighting usage and power bill. Run your own numbers to know



if this is a benefit or option for your grow. For a large operation this could make a big dent in the power bill, but maybe not for a small one. Reduction of lighting time by half drops production roughly by 25%, does that work out for you based on the cost to harvest ratio? Maybe, especially if the intent is to fly under the radar by keeping energy bills low. Reducing A/C usage is harder to accomplish, so switching out lighting is probably going to have the biggest impact on this factor. Light ventilation can be added to push out heat. Running lights at night, instead of day helps in several ways. There is less radiate heat outside at night, and electricity rates can vary in the growers favor depending on the time of the day. In Southern California, the afternoon rate is 4x that of early morning rates, and from 10pm until 10am is the lowest rate available. Run lights during those off-peak hours, or pull energy in at those hours and store it in batteries. Some choose to just run their grow room at a higher temperature, but this can reduce production slightly, with cannabinoid loss occurring above 90 degrees. Solar or wind energy producing equipment is a good option, depending on location and budget. Although not cheap, incentives to help cover the cost of purchasing and installing the equipment do exist. Natural light most likely will require some redesign and reconstruction of your space, which can be done, but it will likely be expensive. As an engineering designer and cannabis cultivation consultant, I can examine an existing structure and rebuild parts to bring in natural sunlight, which takes time and money to accomplish. Natural lighting is certainly the cheapest option to use, but is difficult to bring enough of it indoors to

“How does a $10,000-$20,000 monthly bill sound to you? The number of lights needed for many commercial cultivation operations produce huge bills like this often.”

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Growing Cannabis Online



4 Keys to Entering the Digital Marketplace The second key to online advertising: Understand its limitations and find the workaround.

T THE end of every rainbow

might just be a golden pot of…well, pot. This industry is thriving, and California is leading the charge. In 2014, California dispensaries made over $1.12 billion in sales, but unfortunately, this prosperity is divided among many hands. Experts estimate over 1,000 dispensaries are in business in California, and with only 572,762 medical marijuana patients, according to the California Department of Public Health, dispensaries are fighting for just 572 patients each. This fierce competition has made it even more important that a business stands out, but how can they? Online advertising has been the answer for many dispensaries, providing endless opportunities to make connections and reach their ever-expanding cannabis-loving audience. The digital marketplace also solves one of the fundamental problems many dispensaries face, the difficulty of defining a target demographic out of the many different types of people that enjoy cannabis. This is a fundamental challenge where the digital marketplace can help. Until California legalizes recreational cannabis, advertising should be treated more like ibuprofen and less like an ice-cold bottle of beer. Yes, sex, drugs, and partying sell, but cannabis is not alcohol, nor is it tobacco.

The first key to exceptional online advertising: Know your audience.

Dmitry Muzychuk, a manager at Exhale Med Center, disclosed that their customers are over the age of 25 and cover everyone from veterans to corporate professionals, moms, and patients. This customer-base is a far cry from how many dispensaries view and advertise to their consumers. A veteran with PTSD is not going to respond to a social media post that says, “Get your Cat Piss bud today at 20% off.” That type of content would be better suited to an early 20-something who may just be looking to get high. A much more appropriate post for a veteran would read, “If you are looking for swift symptom relief without a heavy sedative effect, try Blue Dream.” No amount of online advertising will be successful if you market cannabis incorrectly.

“A veteran with PTSD is not going to respond to a social media post that says, “Get your Cat Piss bud today at 20% off.”

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“Online giants, like Google Adwords and Facebook advertising, make expanding a cannabis business online tricky.” The use of any cannabis phrase or image immediately shuts down all advertising. To get around this limitation and go after the 210 million active Facebook users, dispensaries should focus on organic growth. Unlike paid advertising, organic content is not bound by federal regulations, which makes SEO—search engine optimization—a viable outlet. In layman’s terms, SEO uses keywords to find customers. For example, if your customers are searching for “the best dispensary in Los Angeles” within Google, then ensure that your website, social media pages, and blogs use that phrase. Google will then rank your content depending on how well you utilize the key phrase. There is nothing easy or simple about SEO, but it is one of the best ways to drive new business.

CALIFORNIA 2014 CANNABIS STATISTICS • $1.13 billion in sales • 572,762 medical cannabis patients • Over 1,000 dispensaries • 73.18 million grams sold • $15.40 per gram • 73,085 grams per dispensary • $1.13 million in sales per dispensary

SEO too complicated? Focus on the third key to online advertising: Cannabis-exclusive publications and websites.

The fourth key to online advertising: Take your canna-business back to its roots: Word of mouth.

“By focusing on cannabis-friendly outlets,” Muzychuk tells DOPE, “we can avoid the negative stigma often associated with our industry.” There are many online networks dedicated solely to cannabis, Dope Magazine being one of the best with a new website in the works (no bias here), Weedmaps and Leafly providing other well-known and respected options.

The value of testimonials on sites like Yelp and Urban Spoon cannot be denied. When mystery shrouds so much of the cannabis industry, a well-written review can make all the difference. Moreover, when an ArcView is reporting the entire cannabis market is worth over $1.5 billion, it’s important to illustrate your worth to new customers from the most reliable outside source, your current customers.

There’s even an online option just for consumers, called MassRoots. With over 275,000 users, they’re a shining example of a social media channel for cannabis lovers. MassRoots allows users to openly and anonymously connect with others in the cannabis community. The only issue with using these cannabis-exclusive options is that businesses miss out on the numerous ‘new-to-the-scene’ individuals who do not participate in the subculture.

When it all comes down to it, we are all enjoying an exceptionally rare opportunity to build a new American industry, and it doesn’t happen very often. So revaluate your efforts, embrace the plentiful online opportunities for advertising, and find the best method for your business to reach that golden end of the rainbow. ISSUE 01 THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

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Upton’s Captain Jacks Ending Social Isolation





E LIKE an atmosphere full of good vibes, and we found that in Upton, forty-five minutes outside of downtown LA. Captain Jacks is an awesomely cool dispensary experience. I attended the 420 party hosted by Craig Beresh, Director, California Cannabis Coalition; the celebration at Captain Jacks is thrown by six dispensaries. Captain Jacks provides an opportunity for social interaction. We all need social outlets, but opportunities for bonding with like-minded individuals can be limited for those living with chronic pain and other medical issues. We enjoyed mixing and mingling in an environment that’s a safe space for medical marijuana patients, as well as a social spot where patients can stay and linger for awhile. It was as if a magic genie appeared, mandating a nice time with no stigma attached. Friendly staff, a relaxed atmosphere with brightly painted walls, and an outdoor space where bands scatter rhythmic reggae beats makes Captain Jacks a real treat. Welcomed as a first time patient , we received a nice goodie-bag with tickets for a top-shelf house joint, a raffle ticket for bongs, and other give-a-ways. I was feeling pretty special. Not huge by LA club standards, Captain Jacks is large enough to easily differentiate between rooms. The bar area is bathed in red with black accents, and they’ve managed to do that LA chic look without coming off as pretentious. Instead of glasses on top of the bar, huge bongs rest in a variety of shapes and colors. Bar stools held a diverse group of people, all totally chill. Captain Jack’s has a pull and energy that is purely welcoming. The huge bongs were used for doing dabs, and this writer was a bit intimidated by the sheer size of the bong and the torch used to light it. So the nicest torch-lighter ever took care to make certain we used a preferred amount of wax, not too much and not too little, while ushering us gently through our virgin-dab experience. While bonding across the bar with other patients, we were approached by a black man with a spiritual aura, offering us blessings of peace. Turns out, it was International Reggae sensation Pato Baton. The band, which includes Banton’s beautiful wife, endeared me even more to Captain Jacks. Taking in the sweet sounds of music therapy urging the legalization of cannabis, and giving thanks for the array of illnesses that can be helped with cannabis, we felt part of something huge. That moment, frozen in time, makes me a proponent of gathering places for patients and Pato Banton’s message. There is relief from living with depression and physical illness. There is healing within the socializing and the face-to-face interactions with others. And, truly best for patients, there is also no shame associated with the Captain Jack experience.

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“Some social barriers that exist aren’t able to be broken down without a catalyst, in this case it’s cannabis.” ISSUE 01 THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

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Looking For Love Amongst The Weeds





My420Mate App Blends Online Dating With Cannabis Culture in LA. N ANY weekend night in Los Angeles people are primping and preening themselves, getting their outfits to look the correct amount of both respectable, and representative of their eccentricities. Taking a little pre-event medication before readying themselves to strap on a name tag, they head to a 420 community singles mixer. It used to be that you’d lock eyes with someone and fall in love, but then again there was also a time when you had to meet someone in shady circumstances to grab an 1/8th. Times have changed. The online dating world has exploded recently, and it’s less about searching for that ‘spark’, and more about finding someone with matching interests and lifestyle aspirations. There are hazards though, like how to represent your complex being accurately to the wider internet audience, and how to be sure the person you are talking to has similar intentions. Guided by intuition, we understand more about people in the live, face-to-face setting so popular before the internet. My420Mate, a dating app based in LA, is attempting to bridge the gap between online and real world cannabis friendly dating. With an active community numbering in the thousands, they produce events where patients meet in an “upscale” environment, medicate, and mingle. In the past, Miguel Lozano, who organizes the events, has seen a diverse range of attendees “from 25 to 60-years-old.” The events are held in 420 friendly venues across the city, often at a bar. Since attendees do not have the place all to themselves, it’s really humorous to see all the cannabis enthusiasts occupy a corner, branding themselves with name tags like some conspiratorial clique. After showing their doctor recommendations for medical marijuana, attendees are given a gift bag of products from event sponsors, and ‘medicating areas’ are available. Miguel compares the event to a networking night, “We provide a venue for like-minded people to come together and socialize, basically.” B. Le Grand, from and an attendee of the events in Los Angeles, says of the crowd, “It tends to bring diverse groups of people

together, there is no discrimination in who can consume cannabis. Some social barriers that exist wouldn’t usually be able to be broken down without a catalyst, in this case it’s cannabis.” Miguel is quick to describe the event as “for adults,” differentiating itself from the sometimes mucky world of dab events and other canna- mixers where the environment can be confronting for some first-timers. B. Le Grand says, “Being only one of a few women who showed up right at the beginning, it can be a little intimidating because you become a target, like a wounded gazelle, but there’s always cannabis to be the icebreaker or conversation starter. You can take a dab, or roll a blunt if you meet someone there you want to smoke with.” I asked Miguel what he thought made people attend the event, “I think that everyone is coming to a place where everybody understands that medicating and cannabis is part of where you’re at, it definitely opens up that door to feel more comfortable.” With the dizzying array of online dating platforms available, why are people choosing to find a relationship with cannabis at its core? “I quit smoking weed for partners in the past,” says B. Le Grand, “and I eventually came to the realization that I wasn’t doing that for me. I was denying myself a right to a quality of life.” But does an individual’s use of a healing herb make them a ‘type’ of person, one way or another? To this they reply, “If there’s Christian mingles and senior meets, why wouldn’t cannabis have it’s own place in the market? It’s important to find someone on the same level, and it’s not the easiest thing to find on other dating sites. When someone is a user of cannabis they’re usually someone who is more understanding, low key, and a down-to-earth person.” The intention of attendees often goes beyond looking for someone to date, this is an opportunity for many to gain access to the Los Angeles 420 community. However, it is still a singles event and sometimes nature takes its course, as experienced by B. Le Grand, “I wasn’t in the mindset for dating or meeting anybody at all, this event was for networking, but both my associate and I walked out with dates that night. It was very unexpected.”

“Some social barriers that exist wouldn’t usually be able to be broken down without a catalyst, in this case it’s cannabis.”

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#215/ 217




Canna We Get It On?

Cannabis - The All-Natural Aphrodisiac





ARY JANE is one sexy lady, and since this is DOPE’s anniversary issue and we’re basically lucky enough to be married to her we felt the need to do some between-the-sheets sexploration of our favorite all natural aphrodisiac. The following is a mash-up of both anecdotal, and research based findings meant to peak your curiosity and arouse both your body and mind.



First and foremost, Foria sex lube has been making headlines for over a year now in everything from Women’s Health Magazine to cannabis publications. It’s a sexy mix of coconut oil and 2 mg of THC. It’s claim? To lengthen and intensify arousal and orgasm.

Keep in tune with what is being more and more often referred to as ‘stoner sexuality.’ The book Sex Pot: The Marijuana Lover’s Guide to Getting It On by Mamakind, has been heralded by Rihanna as her “new encyclopedia.” Needless to say, it comes highly recommended, and features all the tips and tools necessary to get high, hot and bothered in all the right ways.

Want to get down for a morning or mid-day romp? Sativas, including the rather common Green Crack, and the somewhat rare, Asian Fantasy, have both been reported to have a highly arousing effect for energetic daytime sex.

Understand that female sexuality gets increasingly complicated with age. Even a small dose of Mary Jane can go a long way in lightening the mood, easing the mind, and loosening the body. Know yourself. We all respond differently to sex and cannabis in isolation. Putting them together can be an exciting and potent mix, but keep it safe and stay aware of other’s personal boundaries and your own.

Looking for a more romantic, eveningtime love making session? While rare, the strain Yumboldt is allegedly one hell of a romancer, and it’s said that the legendary Grand Daddy Purple will keep lovers saying “Who’s your daddy?” all night long. .

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DON’T YOU DARE Embrace silly studies that attempt to link cannabis and promiscuity. Get so high you become overly sensitive, orgasm too quickly, and find yourself sleeping on the couch with your bong. Get so stoned you’re a lackluster participant (lacking lubrication and/or being half-hard are surefire signs of a misfire in the bedroom). ISSUE 01 THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

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Celebrity Advocate: Laganja Estranja EXAS TRANSPLANT, California cannabis patient,

and drag queen with a cause, Jay Jackson, is celebrating a big win near and dear to his heart this year, the right for same sex couples to marry on a national level.

“The Supreme Court ruling was historic,” the 26 yearold performer said from his home in Los Angeles. “The fight for equality is something incredibly important to me. The fact that my sister and her wife can now renew their vows and have their marriage legally recognized in our home state of Texas; there’s no greater joy.” The Supreme Court’s decision to overturn DOMA, the “Defense of Marriage Act,” passed by Congress and signed into national law by then president, Bill Clinton in 1996, had the lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender, queer (LGBTQ) community dancing in the streets. While progress is being made within the Queer community, Laganja’s other passion, the progression to end the prohibition of cannabis is painfully slow, with persecution still prevailing in legal states, medical or otherwise.

Alright for us, not for you The rights for cannabis patients are being decided on state, county and city levels, with much contradiction. The most recent conundrum being both the addition of PTSD’s to Washington State’s list of ailments, while Colorado announced to disallow it, within days of each other. While veterans of war are typically first in line for a diagnosis of PTSD, followed by anyone else who has experienced trauma, those in the LGBTQ community are very frequently effected from lifetimes of discrimination, abuse, and bullying.

Fearlessly Defending Our Plant One Heel in Front of the Other WRITER SHARON LETTS

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In January of 2014 Laganja was chosen to compete in season six of the Logo TV’s RuPaul’s Drag Race. When Jackson showed up for production in his hometown of Los Angeles, he says an intensive search was done of his belongings by the production company. “It wasn’t like a bag check at a concert where they quickly look in your purse and wave you past,” he explained. “I arrived with bins of hair, make-up, accessories, wigs, and costume’s, and they went through all of it, while the other girls told me their search was fairly simple. They made me choose between my career and my medicine, and when faced with that decision, I sacrificed my medicine.” Jackson is all too familiar with discrimination. He’s dealt with it all his life, whether for who he is or how he chooses to medicate, making PTSD situations all too common.

“My point of view is controversial, my medicine has a stigma, my stage name is a trigger – I get it,” he said clearly frustrated, “but the show was filmed in California and I’m a legal cannabis patient here. Prior to filming I attempted to hand the production company my medical card, and let them know that I am a patient and medicate for real issues, but they said it wasn’t enough. I don’t have any bad feelings for RuPaul, the network, or the production company. I will just be happy for the day when my medicine is understood and accepted.” Request for comments on the search itself or information on the company’s policy on medical cannabis in production went unanswered. “Jackson said a producer called him with an additional reminder of its non-disclosure agreement (NDA).” It seems details regarding the way he was treated and the policies surrounding the search is confidential.

Medicating For A Lifetime of Pain Jackson’s ailments are extensive, both emotionally and physically, as he suffers from a childhood of stresses relating to his sexual orientation, on top of physical damage to his body from performing. Without cannabis we can safely assume he would be prescribed anti-depressants and an anti-anxiety medication, at the very least. As a lifelong athlete dealing with pain, he would typically be prescribed painkillers or be addicted to an opiate derivative by now. The amount of medication he’d need prescribed by a doctor to replace the various forms of cannabis he uses as medicine is daunting, to say the least - but it all would have been allowed on national television with no search necessary. “I medicate with cannabis for a number of purposes in many different ways,” he explained. “My initial use came from a dance injury in college, and I now have replaced my western pills with the herb. I no longer regularly take sleeping pills or pain killers, and the herb keeps me calm under pressure, keeps my emotions level, and combats the physical pain of getting into drag.”

ous dance tricks! Cannabis really does help me be my best, most relaxed self – it’s integral to my success and well-being.” Without the herb the participation on Drag Race was challenging. Emotions ran high, tears flowed, her body ached, and Laganja was not at her best. Her medicine would have made all the difference in her performance, but the education wasn’t there. Due to her talent, she “sashayed away” with her chin up and her popularity at an all-time high. The stress of the ordeal sent her to the bottle during a PTSD episode. Eight months ago, Jackson came clean, is now shunning alcohol and is working with fellow Drag Race star Gia Gunn on a #TeamTooMuch tour, with health being a top priority.

The physical torture of drag is little known to the outside world. It’s a way of life, a practice, and takes tons of taping, tucking – and a whole lot of topical cannabis salve. “A tuck is when a female illusionist takes his genitals and hides them from view – partially inside him with tape,” he shared. “It’s something I’ve gotten used to, but it’s especially uncomfortable and painful when done for an extended period of time. Tape is often used on the edges of the face to give a ‘lift,’ and around the hairline to secure the wig. I do crazy tricks when I perform, so my wig has to be on tight! The bobby pins are pressed hard into my skull and the tape is constraining.” Aside from physical changes in appearance leading to pain, Laganja’s performances, her signature “Death Drop,” a move putting her feet above the stage, then plunging her back down to the ground in the splits – all the while wearing eight inch heels and a wig – would send anyone to big pharma begging for help. “Cannabis helps me relax while dancing,” he shared. “If there is too much tension some of the moves I perform are very dangerous. The ‘Death Drop’ and all the variations can be really painful if not done correctly. It takes training, strength, and the ability to relax to accomplish these physical feats. I tuck, I tape, and I wear killer heels, corsets, and do ISSUE 01 THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

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Supporting Sisters Laganja made many connections during season six of Drag Race, but “Gia Gunn,” otherwise known as Chicago native Scott Ichikawa, became a partner in advocacy with “#TeamTooMuch,” the duo’s touring production that advocates safety and sobriety within the drag community, and beyond. Ichikawa, who had family support coming out as a teenager, came to terms with his own self-medicating to quell emotions, about the same time Jackson fessed up to abusing alcohol post Drag Race. “I’ve never been a big fan of alcohol,” he shared. “Drugs can be fun, but [they] wear on the body. Being sober and finding clarity has really helped me realize that I need my health to keep going. Recently I started to get that anxious feeling and wasn’t sure where it was coming from. I felt uncentered and had to make a change, so I went to Colorado and discovered natural oils, cannabis, yoga and spiritual healing – all positive ways of selfmedicating, allowing us to ‘escape’ without harming our bodies.” As far as Ichikawa is concerned, acceptance is one thing and understanding is another, but the labeling and judgements that continue, he feels, are a huge problem. “People need to accept that a lot of things are not black and white, yes or no, gay or straight,” he explains.” Sometimes it’s all of those things. I would love people to have a better understanding of themselves, so they can better understand others.” I have found that becoming more open with myself – which has caused great discomfort – has allowed me to be more at peace with others. Especially in dealing with gender issues – the answer is not always ‘right there,’ and that’s alright – we just need to understand the concept!”

The higher the heels and bigger the hair, the closer to God This past month Laganja was invited to be on stage with Miley Cyrus as she hosted the MTV Video Music Awards (VMAs). Cyrus at just 21 years of age has proven to be a faithful proponent of the plant and an outspoken advocate for the LGBTQ community, dawning Laganja’s designer jewelry in Instagram posts, and learning a few of her moves. With Cyrus’ non-profit, “Happy Hippies Foundation,” she recognizes the need for support within the LGBTQ community. Her foundation reaches out to the growing number of traumatized and homeless youth on the streets, offering support and services. Inviting Laganja on stage with her to a mainstream event, such as MTV’s VMAs was a statement and show of support, both for the plant and the LGBTQ community. Jackson said he’ll continue to dawn the wig and heels to advocate for his good medicine, dealing with any trauma and stress as the drama plays out. He’s used to it, as he’s been dancing around difficult situations all his young life. “Within the LGBTQ community I’m known as a voice for legalization and the decriminalization of cannabis,” he shared. “However, it has been slightly difficult for me to gain exposure within the cannabis community. I’ve been told it may be due to an imbedded brand of homophobia, but there are exceptions! For my last photo shoot for Dope Magazine (October, 2012), I had the opportunity to stay at a farm owned and operated by LGBTQ women!” Laganja’s hopes are high to someday be included in the world of weed, recently recording a rap song, “Hot Box,” a nasty, playful song that he hopes can build a bridge to connect more deeply with the cannabis community. And while she’s eternally grateful for Dope Magazine for giving her an opportunity to shine (this cover is a first for a drag star in a top weed magazine), she still feels she’s a long way back in the line for dabs, so to speak. “My dream is to perform at one of the cannabis festivals,” Jackson said. “I’ve got my fair share of negative commentators, but who cares? All the honesty, positivity, and healing outweighs the haters. I have great relationships with farmers and dispensaries, and I’m in talks on getting my own branded Laganja ganja. I’m still going to be me. I exist at the crossroads of counter cultures and the tide is changing. I just want to put it out into the universe – I want to be your weed Queen! Let me dance for you!” (and DOPE loves you too, beautiful!

• • • •

Laganja Estranja Gia Gunn RuPaul’s Drag Race on Logo Laganja’s single, “Hot Box” launching Sept. 4 on iTunes

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Stressed, Gay & Stoned? Not A Problem.


Cannabis Provides Support for PTSD in the LGBTQ Community

PAPER published in the Harvard Gazette (2012) recognizes the occurrence of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorders (PTSDs) for those associating as Lesbian, Gay, Bi-Sexual, or Transgender (LGBT) as being much more frequent starting at a younger age than with heterosexuals suffering with the same disorders. The study, previously published online in the American Journal of Public Health, states the long term ramifications of these types of disorders stem from years of internal confusion based on sexual orientation, and reoccurring instances of public discrimination founded on misinformation. Lead author, Andrea Roberts, research associate at the Department of Society, Human

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Development, and Health for the Harvard School of Public Health explains, “We looked at a group of people who were at the cusp of adulthood and found much higher levels of PTSDs in sexual orientation minorities compared with heterosexuals. We found that differences in PTSDs by sexual orientation already exist by age 22. This is a critical point at which young adults are trying to finish college, establish careers, get jobs, maintain relationships, and establish a family.”

ability to function normally in daily life. Negative changes in thinking, combined with negative feelings about one’s self or other people starts to come into play and the inability to have positive emotions or feel good about things are common. All sited as being part of PTSD are feelings of being numb, a lack of interest in activities once previously enjoyed, feeling hopeless about the future, problems with memory, and difficulty maintaining close relationships.

“Triggered by a terrifying event, either experiencing it or witnessing it,” is how the Mayo Clinic describes the disorders that include “flashbacks, nightmares and severe anxiety, as well as uncontrollable thoughts about the event.” Not all involved with a traumatic event are affected long term by PTSDs, but those who are could be challenged for months to years, with the condition interfering with the

According to the Mayo Clinic’s description of the disorder, changes in emotional reactions, such as irritability, angry outbursts, or aggressive behavior is noted, with overwhelming feelings of guilt or shame, trouble concentrating, and being easily frightened. It’s no surprise the Mayo Clinic’s definition of the disorder ends with information for a national suicide hotline.


Lost-n-Found One year ago, then 18 year-old Daniel Ashley Pierce was beaten, denounced, and thrown out of his home by his Christian parents and grandparents in his hometown of Atlanta, Georgia. During the intervention gone wrong, Pierce was able to film some of the altercation. It went viral of course, causing an outpouring of support and nearly $100,000 to be donated to a GoFundMe campaign, helping him to start over. Immediate support came from an Aunt, who opened her home to him. But he said he would not have known how to begin without the help of Atlanta non-profit organization Lost-nFound, created in 2011 with a mission to assist Atlanta’s documented 750 homeless youth.

Lost-n-Found’s website informs that 53% of the youth they have helped had nowhere to turn after being kicked out of their home stating, “There are only about 48 hours from the time a kid becomes homeless before 33% of youth begin to engage in risky behaviors such as theft, drug activity or selling their bodies for money to survive.” Pierce is one of the lucky ones. According to a story posted on Lost-n-Found’s website, one year later he is doing well, happy in a relationship, working as a paralegal, and planning a trip to relocate to the West Coast with his supportive partner.

Gender-bending in Utah Twenty-three year old Utah transplant, now California patient, Marval A. Rechsteiner is currently going through a medical transition from a biological male to female. A graduate of Humboldt State University (HSU), Rechsteiner found his medicine in Northern California, and will continue to medicate through myriad compilations from hormone therapy and subsequent surgeries pending. Though Gays, Lesbians, and Bi-Sexually identifying people are somewhat more accepted now, transgender people, often referred to as “gender-benders,” such as Rechsteiner, have been traditionally unable to fit it. This is due largely to being perceived by many people as confused for dressing or acting as the opposite sex in order to feel alright in their own skin. “Growing up in Salt Lake City in the 90s, by my very biology as a gender-bending person, I was an outsider and rebel from a young age,” he shares. “I had crushes on the young girls my age and felt that the boys were often competitive and mean to each other. The strict gender norms of either male or female confused me greatly and caused me stress from a very early

age. I began to disassociate with my body around the onset of adolescence, and high school became a time of secrets; secrets around the core of my identity and gender. Basically, as a teenager, I felt my body had betrayed me.” Stress, anxiety, panic attacks, agoraphobia, and eating disorders – all this and more are symptoms most LBGT youth deal with on a daily basis. “I have trigger points in relation to my gender identity,” Rechsteiner shares. “I’ll have a panic attack because of fear and internalized self-hatred that looks very much like a PTSD episode. Other gender-nonconforming people have told me of similar attacks where it feels like the world is about to collapse in on them. Look at it this way, if your very identity is constantly made invisible or stereotyped negatively, you disassociate from integral parts of who you are – and what that means is years and years of unpacking the hatred inside yourself to find yourself again, and find love.” Rechsteiner said Queer people often use cannabis in a negative way, just like

any other substance used to bypass emotional hurting. But he also acknowledges how it has helped him deal with all sorts of issues surrounding his identity. “In the past when the panic attacks began I was prescribed Xanax to calm me down,” he explains. “Now, I use cannabis in specific ways. During my transition with hormone replacement therapy I was smoking, as it lifts your mood fairly quickly. Tincture is by far my best option in terms of calming my fear down. I don’t get blazed out of my mind on it, and it helps me to get into my body and feel good inside it – which is deeply healing for someone like me, who has disassociated [with my body] for such a long time.” With a BFA in Sculptural Ceramics from HSU, Rechsteiner said his future includes using the arts for activism, saying “I’m about to head to a trans conference known as ‘Gender Odyssey’ in Seattle. I’ll be helping its guest artist set up a show to talk about trans and racial intersections of identity. It’s an exciting opportunity - and I get to meet some famous names in the transgender community!” ISSUE 01 THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

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Tests, Trials & Lab Rats Both the FDA, and the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services have given a green light to Suzanne Sisley, researcher at the University of Arizona, to conduct research on cannabis use for PTSDs. The 10-week study, which would examine fifty veterans, is yet to be approved by the DEA. With more than 7.7 million Americans suffering from PTSDs nationwide, Sisley is hopeful for approval. “Although there is a mountain of anecdotal evidence that cannabis helps with PTSDs, there has been no controlled trial to test how cannabis suppresses the symptoms, including flashbacks, insomnia and anxiety,” Sisley told USA Today (March, 2014). In an article found in the Huff Post’s “Science” blog, Carolyn Gregoire reports findings from a study published in the journal Neuropschopharmacology on the

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dosing of synthetic cannabinoids to rats after a traumatic event and the prevention of behavioral and physiological symptoms of PTSD by “triggering changes in brain centers associated with the formation and holding of traumatic memories.” In other words, the study found that when synthetic cannabis (with a THC component) is administered after a traumatic experience (in this case electro shock to the poor rat’s feet), the incidence of future PTSD episodes from the event were minimized. To realize these findings, researchers gave synthetic cannabis to the rats post electrical impulse, and then prepared a false shock. Those rats treated with cannabis beforehand did not exhibit symptoms common to PTSD, such as “impaired extinction learning, increased startle response, changes in pain sensitivity and impaired plasticity in the brain’s reward center.”


The rats not treated with the compound, however, displayed all symptoms. It’s interesting to note, the rats not treated with cannabis were given the SSRI antidepressant sertraline, otherwise known as Zoloft, with “mixed results.” Also surprising to some, cannabis can help the disorder from occurring, and even better to know - another study published in Science Daily (May 2014) shows a 75% reduction in PTSDs while using cannabis when the disorder is already diagnosed. With the national acceptance of same sex marriage, the door was opened for further education and subsequent acceptance of the LGBTQ community and its struggles. Add enlightened cannabis users, and help may just be on its way to begin the emotional healing following decades of misunderstanding on both subjects.

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Buds & Blossoms Beneficial Arrangements to Love

LORIST BEC Koop, owner of Cannabis Concierge

Events and Buds & Blossoms in Denver has been playing with flowers since she was eight years old, helping alongside her mother in her mom’s best friend’s flower shop outside in her chilhood home town of Washington DC.

“I started my own flower business in 2011 while working part time for a dispensary in Alma, Colorado,” she explained. “I had some extra flowers from an event and was cutting down a plant out of my own garden when I had my ‘A-Ha’ moment. I put the two together and have been in love with the fusion ever since!” Koop said she initially used fresh bud in the arrangements, but then began adding dried bud on long stems, allowing the bud to be enjoyed after the celebration. “My motto is, ‘Straight from your bouquet to your bowl!” she laughed. “I also help my clients ‘bring the cannabis theme to any scene.’” This can be done in a variety of ways with a little imagination. Nearly everything necessary for an event can be done using hemp or cannabis, and Koop says she procures hemp wedding dresses, invitations and other paper goods, infused appetizers, entrees, and the wedding cake of course. Custom hand blown glass pieces via jewelry or pipes can also be created for special guests, bridal parties, and party favors.

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Koop’s services keep expanding as she and client’s imaginations run wild. “The possibilities are endless,” she adds. “I’ve coordinated dispensary holiday parties, corporate events and conferences; Valentine’s Day celebrations, birthdays, and anniversaries.” As with any cannabis business, legalities in procuring and distributing the plant material are a consideration. Koop said policy dictates her clients purchase their own plant material at their own dispensaries, and then deliver all to her for arranging. Photographers Andrea Burolla and Denise Chambers are co-owners of “Lollylah Wedding Photography” of Denver, and team up with Koop, covering weddings and other events involving cannabis. Neither one partakes medicinally nor recreationally, but they both appreciate what’s happening with cannabis in their home state, and their association with Koop has educated them both regarding the good medicine. “Denise and I have backgrounds in travel photography,” Burolla explained. “One day we were discussing what drives people here – aside from the mountains. We started talking about cannabis, and how every time we leave the state it’s the first thing anyone outside Colorado brings up. We found ourselves fascinated by all the different types of people coming out of the cannabis closet – HR reps, teachers, working professionals – people who definitely didn’t fit the pot smoking mold.”


The two decided to put together “styled” photo shoots to blow away the perceptions of the “typical stoner.” “After some deliberation we decided to make the shoot more relevant to what we are currently doing,” Burolla continues. “We started pulling together vendors to create a cannabis themed wedding photo shoot that was sophisticated, classic and refined – sure to blow stereotypes out of the water.”




“The amount of research going into this amazing plant is really just starting to get recognized and respected,” she surmised. “With that in mind, I see this movement continuing to grow exponentially. It will be exciting to see our world being helped in so many ways, with food, medicine, fiber, or fuel. I can see my own little businesses expanding, and I’d be willing to consider franchising with anyone interested in this type of company in other states.”

Burolla says the lovely photo shoot gracing the pages of this story took two months to plan, with many vendors involved. Buds were used for a “Budonniere” on the groom’s lapel, the bride’s bouquet, hair pieces, and table top bouquets. Her dress was custom made from hemp, and hemp and cannabis-infused delicacies lined tables with other items offered as well like fancy vape pens, hemp jewelry, and hemp wedding invitations. A patient in her own right, Koop is also a recreational user – with no apologies. “I started using cannabis in college for endometriosis and pain relief from sports injuries,” she says, “but I will never deny I enjoy the high, as well.” According to the National Institute of Health’s website (NIH, www., approximately 75% of women with pelvic pain and as many as 50% of women with fertility problems are diagnosed with endometriosis - a disorder where tissue that normally grows outside the uterus, grows inside, causing extreme pain. Once the lesions heal, nerve pain from scar tissue can be equally painful. The condition includes painfully debilitating menstrual cramps that increase with time, pain during or after sex, pain in the lower abdomen or intestine, painful bowl movements, or painful urination during menstrual periods, with bladder or other chronic gastrointestinal issues. Smoking is Koop’s mainstay for warding off symptoms, but she also ingests medibles, and recently discovered juicing leaf. Working for medible makers, and in-house at a dispensary, has given her a wealth of education on cannabis, and she says it has enabled her to help others. She elaborates, “My professional start in the industry began in 2013, prior to everything going recreational here in Colorado. Working in a dispensary helped me to see just how much cannabis works for patients. I was brought to tears many times watching patients in extreme neuropathy pain and discomfort, barely able to pull money out of their wallets to purchase their meds being instantly helped by this plant.” The future of Koop’s blooming business is looking bright green and with so many other states lined up for legalization, she knows the possibilities will only continue to grow.

“We started pulling together vendors to create a cannabis themed wedding photo shoot that was sophisticated, classic and refined – sure to blow stereotypes out of the water.” ISSUE 01 THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

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Cannabis Kitchen Cookbook


Feel-Good Food For Home Cooks

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kitchen. Cookbook . for hom e coo ks Fee F e el-G l- Good o o d Foo F o odd f o r h o m e co o ks

Law ren ce ggs Gri yn Rob R o by n by G r i g g s L aw r e n c e Pov y Kend al Atch ison

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P ov y K e n da l Atc h i so n

Fore word by Jane West Foreword by Ja n e West

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The Cannabis Kitchen Cookbook: Tips for Buying and Dosing Choose a store that’s right for you. With options that range, from Mom & Pop shops to mega-superstores and everything in between, find a place you feel comfortable with.

Follow your nose. Everyone has different tastes and preferences, the best way to find a strain that works for you is to find one with an enticing aroma.

Ask a lot of questions. Is it organic? Has it been tested for mold or pesticides? How long was it cured for? Asking for a personal favorite from a budtender is never a bad idea.

Start low and go slow. No one has ever had a bad experience from taking too little cannabis on their first time and it can take a long time to kick in.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR Robyn Lawrence Griggs has been teaching America about the beauty of simple living since 1999. As editor-in-chief of Natural Home Magazine, she visited people around the country, learning about innovative and sustainable practices for gardening, building, decorating, and cooking. With previous works published on the beauty of imperfection in home décor, The Cannabis Kitchen Cookbook seeks to bring healthful, responsibly prepared meals to tables everywhere.

$19 available at retailers including Barnes & Noble and Amazon or

UTHOR AND advocate for sustainable, natural living Robyn Griggs Lawrence, has graced the culinary world with the Cannabis Kitchen Cookbook; a tome of mouthwatering recipes that incorporate cannabis in exciting new ways. Rather than infusing sugar-laden brownies or unhealthy candy bars, this book views cannabis as a superfood and treats it accordingly, serving it alongside wild-caught salmon and seared Wagyu beef. Gluten-free, vegan, AND raw? There’s something for you too, including fresh juices, guacamole, and plenty of goji berries.

gredients, and how to properly enjoy the recipe with company.

The book features well over one hundred recipes, provided by fourteen renowned chefs, nutritionists, bakers, and barkeeps. The result is nothing short of extraordinary. Photographs of an extensive medley of gourmet fare jump off of the page, inducing stomach growling simply by thumbing through. Each recipe has its own story and The Cannabis Kitchen Cookbook not only explains the dish’s conception, it also educates about the importance of nutritious in-

There are gourmands among us who may, indeed, know what furikake is, that pemmican is the early Native American hybrid of jerky and trail mix, or how to properly make a kheer from scratch. For the average home cook, however, this book is a culinary journey across cultural divides. This is a chance to experience cuisine from across the world, honed over the centuries and tweaked by modern masters of the kitchen who have added our favorite organic herb.

When pondering over her favorite dish to indulge in, Lawrence laughs, unable to pick just one out of the immense library. She eventually lands on the trail mix because “It’s so easy to make and take on-the-go,” however, as far as entrees go, “the fan leaf pesto is great for its use of the nutritious leaves normally treated as waste.” All of the plates are crafted with respect for food as medicine, and cannabis as a miraculous bounty from the natural world. ISSUE 01 THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

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