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I B O S TO N D EC 2019

HAUTE HOLIDAYS FOR THE

How cannabis is consumed in the upper echelons of society ›››

FABULOUS FUNGI

Eating mushrooms is about much more than magic

GIFT GUIDE

Trim your tree with a little extra green


BOSTON SENSI MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2019

sensimediagroup @sensimagazine @sensimag

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Magnificent Mycelium Mushrooms are earthʼs most plentiful yet mysterious inhabitants.

SPECIAL REPORT

Haute Highs

How luxury has gone to pot

Woke, Not Wasted

What is the sober-curious movement, and can sobriety really be fluid?

D E PA R T M E N T S

9 EDITOR’S NOTE 10 THE BUZZ News, tips, and tidbits

to keep you in the loop GIVE GREEN A cannabis lover’s gift guide STOCK TALK What to ask when you’re investing HERBAL GLOW Treat your skin at Noel Herbals. CANNABIS YOGA with Kijana Rose

42 THE SCENE Hot happenings and hip hangouts around town CALENDAR Events well worth braving the elements to enjoy

50 THE END

Beyond Walls is enlivening Lynn with public parks and art.

ON THE COVER Kikoko tea company gives a whole new meaning to “High Tea.” PHOTO COURTESY OF KIKOKO

40 THE LIFE Contributing to your

health and happiness POLKA DOT DREAMSCAPES

made by Yayoi Kusama

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Green Matters, LLC Supply Chain Greenhouse Payment Solutions Payment Processing The Holistic Center Medical Marijuana Evaluations The Leaf Collaborative Education Lev8 Labs, Ltd Terpenes Lofty Labs, LLC Pet CBD Mayflower Medicinals, Inc. Online Reservations Myofu-An Bujutsu Dojo Martial Arts Instruction

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EDITOR’S NOTE

Magazine published monthly by Sensi Media Group LLC. © 2019 Sensi Media Group. All rights reserved.

EXECUTIVE Ron Kolb CEO ron@sensimag.com Tae Darnell President tae@sensimag.com

Alex Martinez Co-Chief Operations Officer alex@sensimag.com

Mike Mansbridge Co-Chief Operations Officer mike@sensimag.com EDITORIAL

Stephanie Wilson Editor in Chief stephanie@sensimag.com

Doug Schnitzspahn Executive Editor doug.schnitzspahn@sensimag.com Leland Rucker Senior Editor leland.rucker@sensimag.com

Robyn Griggs Lawrence Editor at Large robyn.lawrence@sensimag.com Helen Olsson Copy Editor

Jude Bradley, Christine Lavosky, Caitlin Moakley, Emilie-Noelle Provost, Laurie Riihimiki, Lori Tobias Contributing Writers DESIGN Jamie Ezra Mark Creative Director jamie@emagency.com Rheya Tanner Art Director Wendy Mak Designer Kiara Lopez Designer Josh Clark Designer Jason Jones Designer em@sensimag.com PUBLISHING Leon Drucker Publisher leon.drucker@sensimag.com Richard Guerra Associate Publisher richard.guerra@sensimag.com B U S I N E S S /A D M I N Kristan Toth Head of People kristan.toth@sensimag.com Amber Orvik Director of Administration amber.orvik@sensimag.com

From the start, Sensi’s been all about

progression. Growth is one of the two founding pillars of our company culture; humility is the other. I will be the first to admit the redesigned magazine you’re reading right now is long overdue. This is the first major overhaul of the magazine since we published the first-ever Sensi magazine covering the Denver/ Boulder market in April 2016. Less than two years later, our first Boston publication rolled out to the East Coast, and today, we’re making local lifestyle magazines fueled largely by cannabis industry advertisers in 12 cities coast-to-coast. The redesigned magazine and new branding you see here were about a year in the making. I jotted down my first notes on the subject last November while perusing old issues of Esquire magazine—the best of the best when under the editorial leadership of David Granger. He wrote about his title’s redesign in one of his editor’s notes: “The magazine is not an inevitability. It requires eternal vigilance. It needs to … make an argument for itself.” Elsewhere in my notebooks, I wrote down this Granger wisdom: “[a magazine] is at its best when it starts over, when it is reimagined by the people who make it in order to better address the lives of its readers.” So, that’s what we’re trying to do here. We glanced back to propel ourselves forward. We move onward, the only direction. And as author Jim Collins said (and I wrote down on a different page of that notebook): “[we] keep a clear distinction between what we stand for (which should never change) and how we do things (which should never stop evolving).” We stripped Sensi down to its core components and built it back up again with the reader experience in mind. With you in mind. I hope you like how it turned out.

That’s what we’re trying to do with this redesign. We glanced back to propel ourselves forward. We move onward, the only direction.

Andre Velez Marketing Director andre.velez@sensimag.com Neil Willis Production Manager neil.willis@sensimag.com Hector Irizarry Distribution distribution@sensimag.com M E D I A PA R T N E R S Marijuana Business Daily Minority Cannabis Business Association National Cannabis Industry Association Students for Sensible Drug Policy

Stephanie Wilson @stephwilll DECEM BER 2019

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CONTRIBUTORS

Caitlin Moakley, Emilie-Noelle Provost, Laurie Riihimiki

THE

Grow Some Green Thinking about investing in cannabis stocks? Here’s what you need to know. Though cannabis stocks have taken a hit while the industry has experienced growing pains in the last quarter, cannabisrelated stocks of all kinds have exploded 10 BOSTO N

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across the map over the last few years. Cannabis companies, which make products containing THC and CBD as well as hard goods from hemp, operate in a few basic

categories. Some produce goods for the medicinal market, others for the adult-use market, and still others make products for both. Ancillary companies such as

Denver-based Akerna, which provides supply chain technology for cannabis companies, offer products and services that support these businesses. The cannabis

industry overall is experiencing minimal profit growth, according to an October 2019 Investor’s Business Daily report. Because the industry is new, producers


BY THE NUMBERS

$3.25

“IT REALLY REFLECTS THE FACT THAT IT HAS BECOME A MOVEMENT, A MOVEMENT THAT IS MUCH LARGER THAN US.”

Uber and Lyft Logan International Airport drop-off fee, taking effect December 9

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ranking in a WalletHub study of the public transportation systems in 100 cities

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BILLION HERBAN

must take on debt to establish themselves and expand. Some companies are also experiencing raw materials shortages, licensing issues, and distribution problems. According to Investor’s Business Daily, cannabis industry stocks are still worth watching.

Once companies become established, they are expected to take market share away from the pharmaceutical, alcohol, and tobacco industries and develop a larger, more stable customer base. Keep your eye on cannabis industry news at marijuanastocks.com.

Amount Massachusetts consumers spent on pharmaceuticals in 2018, a 5.8 percent increase over 2017, despite Beacon Hillʼs focus on reducing prescription drug spending

8%

of Boston traffic is made up of Uber and Lyft drivers, according to a study commissioned by the ride-sharing services.

SANCTUARY

—Esther Duflo, one of a trio of researchers from MIT and Harvard who won the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics for their work addressing global poverty, on NPR

Noel Herbals gives a holistic glow.

The city buzzes. Finding a peaceful escape can seem like an impossible mission. Sitting pretty on a Somerville corner is the answer. Noel Herbals is a skincare studio owned and operated by holistic esthetician Shannon Curtis with a client list of men and women who rave about her techniques and proudly display their post-treatment glows. Not looking for a full treatment? Noel Herbals offers plenty of options to treat yourself, from facial toners and serums to hair and beard oils. This spot might be exactly what you need to clear your head for the new year. @noel_herbals / shannon-noel.com

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THE BUZZ

HIGH PROFILE

Bend and Exhale Kijana Rose teaches cannabis yoga in the heart of Boston. When Kijana Rose, a Jamaican transplant, teaches cannabis yoga at I & I Rose Garden in the heart of Boston, her students tell her they have life-changing experiences. “People tell me that they are a different

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person after taking my class,” she says. The practice of ingesting cannabis before yoga is documented in the ancient Yoga Sutras, but Rose’s introduction to this ritual was in Toronto, where she went

to find life’s meaning after she’d been fired from a job. “It was the first time I smoked weed with a group of total strangers and felt accepted and supported,” she says. “I felt safe.”

When the class began practicing yoga, Rose says, “my body opened up in a way it never had before.” It was magical, and she wanted everyone to experience it. “My community goes above and beyond in the love and gratitude they share with me, which drives me to keep pushing forward and expanding,” she says. I & I Rose Garden / iandirosegarden.com


THE BUZZ

SENSIBILITIES WHAT MATTERS THIS MONTH BY STEPHANIE WILSON

1 GOT ANY VACATION DAYS LEFT IN 2019? Use them! Last year, 55 percent

of American workers did not use all their vacation days, leaving a record 768 million days on the table. That’s about $65.5 billion worth of forfeited benefits. Don’t be a sad statistic.

Hemp-Derived CBD for pain, inflammation and stress

______ 2 NEW RULE: Catching up on your emails during the holiday break is forbidden.

Emails breed emails, so every reply or forward you click sends that task to someone else who is either a) trying to enjoy their holiday break, or b) trying to clean out their inbox as well. No more. If it’s in your inbox on December 22, it stays there until January 2. Deal? Deal.

______ 3 I REPEAT: No tossing your forgotten/low priority to-dos on other people’s plates when they are on vacay.

______ 4 IF YOU’RE RESOLVING TO CLEAN UP ANY BAD HABITS IN 2020, Go

all in on them in December. Really indulge your vices: have that second drink, dab, dance, swim in the chaos, make bad decisions. You’ll not only get it out of your system, you’ll be so over it come January 1.

______ 5 IF YOUR VICE IS CONSIDERING THE BOUNDARIES OF YOUR MEANS IMAGINARY (thanks Oscar Wilde), disregard the above advice. You can lose the

holiday weight if you stop overeating, but credit card debt doesn’t work like that. It grows, no matter how much you believe Santa will take care of it.

______ 6 SMILE. The magazine you’re holding right now was made with a whole lot of

enthusiasm by some talented magazine junkies who have been working on the details of this redesign for the last year. This debut is like our Oscars, and we hope you like it. I love it.

"You have the stats, but I'm not sure you know the stories."

—Massachusetts Rep. Ayanna Pressley to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg about the tech company’s cryptocurrency project during a House Financial Services Committee hearing

www.LoftyCBD.com info@loftycbd.com DECEM BER 2019

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THE BUZZ

Get Weedy Find gifts for cannabis lovers this holiday season. Pre-Rolls

Available at New England Treatment Access始 Brookline and Northampton locations, tidy one-gram joints packed with premium-grade cannabis flowers are hand-rolled in natural rice or hemp paper. They始re available as singles or as packages of five or ten (in a crush-proof case). Pre-rolled joints, $15 each / package of five, $70 / package of ten, $135 / netacare.org

CBD-Infused Personal Care Products

The Healing Rose Company in Newburyport offers luxurious CBD-infused personal care products made with organic CBD oil. From lip balms for winter-chapped skin to relaxing bath soaks and massage oils, all The Healing Rose始s products are handmade in small batches and guaranteed to be paraben- and GMO-free. Products are available in-store or online. CBD-infused personal care products / prices vary / thehealingroseco.com

I Love Cannabis Massachusetts Tote Bag

For the Masshole cannabis lovers in your life, load up this eco-friendly canvas tote with pot-infused goodies. The tote is machine washable, and its reinforced handles make carrying groceries a breeze. It始s available in two sizes: small (15-by-15 inch) and medium (15-by-18 inch). I Love Cannabis Massachusetts Tote Bag / small, $11 / medium, $13 / cafepress.com

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THE BUZZ

Massachewsetts Caramels

Custom Cannabis Gift Basket

DIY Grow Kit

These delicious caramel treats with Mary Jane Makes Your Heart Sing in cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, and Springfield lets you create gift basnutmeg, made in Massachusetts by kets full of CBD- and THC-infused Sira Naturals, are infused with mac- goodies by filling out a form on its ro- and micro-doses of THC, CBD, or website (or in person at the store). both. You can pick up the calming You choose what to include from a chai spice candies at Sira Naturalsʼ pre-selected list, and they put them locations in Cambridge, Somerville, all together in a festive arrangement. and Needham. They make great All you have to do is pick it up. stocking stuffers or hostess gifts, Custom cannabis gift baskets / price varies / maryjanemyhs.com and you could even leave a few out for Santa on Christmas Eve.

Thereʼs nothing quite like enjoying vegetables youʼve grown yourself. The same goes for weed. Even first-time growers will find this small grow kit from A Pot for Pot easy to use, and it comes with everything you need to raise a healthy cannabis plant indoors. The two-gallon planter fits in just about any sunny spot. Just add seeds, water, and a bit of TLC, and the plant will be ready to harvest in about three months.

Massachewsetts caramels / $12–$35 / siranaturals.org

Small complete grow kit (2 gallon), $80 / apotforpot.com

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THE BUZZ

VOX POPULI

Question: What’s your go-to treat when it’s chilly in New England?

JOYE WILLIAMS

JULIA DEMILLONES

SUHAYL RAMIREZ

JENNY HAUF

ATHIA LANDRY

___________________

___________________

___________________

___________________

___________________

Owner, Joyefully Natural Boston, MA

Pho. I love going to the local Vietnamese restaurants and filling up on herby broths, meats, and spices.

Herbalist, Mother Pioneer Valley, MA

Arroz caldo, which is a Filipino chicken and rice soup. The ginger is so warming.

Brand Experience Manager Medford, MA

Farmer, Muddy River Herbals Norfolk, MA

Kanner’s Colombian Sancocho at Trina’s Starlite Lounge. Two dollars of every bowl sold goes to the refugee and immigration center for education and legal services.

Mulled cider. It warms my body from head to toe. I love how it fills the kitchen with the sweetest, spiciest smells.

Recipe Developer, Food Stylist Jamaica Plain, MA

Ramen. To me, there is nothing better than a big bowl of warm broth in this cold weather.

We're done."

—Vape Daddy’s owner Stacy Poritzky, who has closed four of her vape shops following Gov. Charlie Baker’s vape products ban

PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT

Climate Neutral Campfire Everybody loves a campfire—but itʼs not always easy to have one. Fires take work to maintain, they can be tough on the natural surroundings, and they can be dangerous—not to mention how you always seem to be sitting directly in the line of that column of smoke. Forget about those problems, BioLiteʼs FirePit Climate Neutral Edition, which holds four logs or charcoal, is portable and smokeless. That means you can haul it out to any spot where you want to park your camper van or just set it up on the back porch on a chilly night. It converts into a grill as well, ideal for those skewer meals. You can adjust the flames by hand… but why? Itʼs far easier to do it via Bluetooth. The good vibes donʼt end there either. BioLite is not only a carbon-neutral company, spending cash to offset any carbon it creates, its founder helped spearhead the nonprofit climateneutral.org, which helps other brands offset their carbon use. Ten percent of sales on this portable campfire go to that worthy cause. BioLite FirePit / $199 / bioliteenergy.com

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School of the Mysterious Knowledge Carried by the Wind

Myofu An Bujutsu Dojo The Soul of the Samurai Introduction to the Katana Warrior Arts

*CLASSES INCLUDE TRAINING SWORD

CLASSES NOW FORMING

  

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KNOW YOUR FUNGI: Pictured is the edible and delicious CaesarĘźs Mushroom or Amanita princeps. But beware: this mushroom can be confused with the deadly Death Cap, Amanita phalloides, in the wild.

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Magnificent Mycelium Neither plant nor animal, mushrooms are Earth’s most plentiful yet mysterious inhabitants. TEXT JUDE BRADLEY

W

PHOTO OF AMANITA MUSCARIA BY IGOR YAMELIANOV

Amanita muscaria, a hallucinogenic mushroom

alk down any city street, and you’ll likely see an opportunistic mushroom growing somewhere. They pepper the lawns of suburban America and turn out in droves on millions of woodland acres all over the globe. They’re tenacious yet fragile—and often misunderstood. As plentiful as they are, the study of mushrooms is a relatively young science. Master herbalist Nathan Searles, who harvests, dries, and sells mushrooms through his company, Forgotten Traditions in Tilton, New

Hampshire, says about 1.4 million different types of mushroom species exist. Mycologists, scientists who study fungi, have identified about 80,000 of them, with only 2,000 deemed to be edible. Ethnobotanists believe mushrooms have been part of the human diet since early humans. The Greek playwright, Euripides, made the first known reference to eating fungi around 450 BC. In the early 1700s, mushroom studies erroneously grouped fungi with plant life, and it wasn’t until nearly 100 years later that the term

“mycology” was coined. Mushrooms have been studied in-depth for only about 70 years. Mushrooms are curious organisms. They differ widely in size, shape, color, texture, nutritional value, and toxicity. Up to 60 percent of their genetics are similar to humans, and it takes two genetically similar spores, or eggs, to create a new organism. Patterns of Consciousness and a Will to Be Harvested Before you forage for mushrooms in the wild, learn from a professional DECEM BER 2019

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PHOTO CREDIT: NICK GRAPPONE

The Psilocybin Quest More than 200 species of mushrooms, widely known as “magic mushrooms,” contain some degree of psilocybin, and various cultures have used them throughout history as an aid to divination and spiritual communication. A long-held societal taboo in the US, these mushrooms are now being explored for their medicinal value through clinical trials throughout the US and worldwide. Major medical organizations are looking at psilocybinʼs effects on Alzheimerʼs disease, depression, anorexia, OCD, grief, cluster headaches and migraines, mood disorders, cognitive impairment, PTSD, nicotine and alcohol dependence, anxiety, cancer, and Parkinsonʼs psychosis. Studies are also being conducted on healthy volunteers and professional religious leaders to monitor physiological and psychological changes affected by psilocybin. Cities across the US are letting voters decide whether the possession and use of psilocybin mushrooms should be a nonissue for law enforcement. Denver and Oakland voters decriminalized them, though federally, theyʼre listed as a Schedule 1 narcotic.

mushrooms are in Massachusetts,” says Doug Sparks, editor-in-chief of Merrimack Valley Magazine and an amateur forager. New England is home to some interesting species. “Hen of the woods, chaga, reishi, and turkey tail are powerful medicinal mushrooms,” says Sparks, who hunts for 25 species and can identify between 60 and 70. “Then there’s the black trumpet, absolutely delicious, and chanterelles, how to determine what’s one of the tastiest out safe to consume. Searles there.” (Searles, the herbwarns that hunting in alist, keeps the savory, New England has its own rich, slightly smoky black set of risks. “There are trumpet—difficult to spot look-alikes that can be on the forest floor—exvery dangerous,” he cauclusively for his family.) tions. Many mushroom Mushrooms “want to species are similar in apbe harvested,” Sparks pearance but vary greatsays. “It’s like they line ly in their compounds, the pathways for people depending on the type, to find them. It’s how season, region, substrate, they reproduce. When and climate. The prized you pick them, thoumorel, for example, has a sands of spores are relook-alike called a “false leased. They want to be morel.” The difference is disturbed. They seem to obvious to experts, but show patterns of conenthusiastic foragers can sciousness. Mycelium is make dangerous mistakes. part of a network, like All mushrooms are trees that communicate not edible. Mushrooms underground.” fall into four basic catMycologist Paul Staegories: edible, nonedmets, the go-to guy in ible, toxic, and poifungi, insists that mushsonous. Not all toxic rooms call to him and mushrooms are poison- communicate with him ous, but all poisonous through intuition and ones are toxic. “Some of imagination. Sparks the world’s most deadly agrees. “Sometimes DECEM BER 2019

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Mushroom Types Saprotrophs, Greek for “rotten nourishment,” release enzymes that break down organic matter so theyʼre able to absorb the nutrients. They play a vital role in regeneration of organic materials. Morels and shiitakes are saprotrophs. Mycorrhizas create a symbiotic relationship with their substrate and surrounding environment.

you just feel it, and you have an impulse, and it guides you,” he says. Nutritious and Flavorful Mushrooms are perceived very differently around the world. Cultures are mycophilic or mycophobic depending on how plentiful wild mushrooms are to the region. Italians, Asians, and Eastern Europeans grow up around mushrooms and use them in traditional dishes, while the Irish and English approach them with more caution. In Asian cultures, matsutake mushrooms sell for up to $5,000 per pound, Searles says, because they cannot be cultivated and must be foraged in the wild near pine trees. Shiitake mushrooms are also considered a delicacy and

are as widely cultivated as white button mushrooms in the US. Oyster mushrooms, the new darlings in the Western world, broadened the playing field because they’re easy to cultivate and grow on almost any substrate, as long as it’s sufficiently inoculated with spores. Most mushrooms contain an impressive but varying amount of protein, vitamins, and minerals and are 20 to 30 percent water. The nutritional makeup of any mushroom depends largely on the substrate—the more nutrient dense it is, the more nutritional value contained in the mushroom, Searles explains. Some species are notably high in vitamin B-12, which is difficult to maintain

in the body. Searles and Sparks agree, however, you cannot survive on mushrooms alone. Their dense fiber content makes them difficult to digest, and too many mushrooms will make you sick. When it comes to flavor, mushrooms are a core food for achieving “umami,” a word that means savoriness in Japanese and has joined the ranks of the familiar tastes: sweet, sour, salty, and bitter. Unusually rich and satisfying, umami is equated with the intense flavor of aged, dried, and fermented foods. Dried shiitake mushrooms are umami, offering a dense base and a hearty broth when rehydrated. Umami stems from the presence of glutamate—the same glutamate you’ll find in popular

They help root systems flourish by transporting oxygen and nutrients to their base materials. Chanterelles are mycorrhizas. Parasitic mushrooms devour weaker organisms to survive, usually killing the host. Honey mushrooms can clear thousands of forest acres. Chagas produce a fruiting body only after a tree dies, then they become saprophytic.

flavor enhancer MSG. As veganism grows in popularity, mushrooms have become a go-to meat alternative, delicious in soups and sauces and now graduating to become the main dish at the dinner table. Keith Pooler, head chef and owner of Bergamot in Somerville, creates some remarkable flavor combinations with fungi, including Madeira Mushroom Cream, which combines earthy morels with a rich cream sauce and full-bodied Portuguese wine. No matter how you slice them, mushrooms are becoming a staple food in the American diet. As our understanding of these remarkable fungi expands, so will our discovery of new uses in the kitchen and in medicine. DECEM BER 2019

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jude Bradley is an author, editor, and journalist living in the Merrimack Valley. She teaches creative writing classes at Northern Essex Community College.

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HIGHS A

t the end of October, the Wall Street Journal ran an article titled “Cannabis Open Houses Are Putting the High in High-End Real Estate.” The trend piece by author Katherine Clarke revealed the emerging discovery being used by developers and real-estate agents to move luxe properties in communities where recreational cannabis is not just legal but widely accepted. It’s not unlike Los Angeles, where the rising industry is being hailed as an untapped source for buyers of high-priced homes. Throwing cannabis-related events—everything from elaborate seven-course pairing dinners with vapes in lieu of vino to live trimming classes—at multimillion-dollar properties on the market is garnering attention, building social buzz, and attracting buyers with money earned in, around, or on cannabis. Not everyone sees the genius behind the trend, however. Clarke spoke

SPECIAL REPORT

Luxury has gone to pot. TEXT LORI TOBIAS AND STEPHANIE WILSON

to one agent in New York, where recreational cannabis is still a pipe dream and old tropes live on about munchie-motivated stoners. “When I think about cannabis, I don’t think about buying an expensive house,” says Warburg Realty’s Jason Haber. “It’s not a call for action as much as a call for Doritos.” Someone should tell him friends don’t let friends make tired stoner jokes anymore. Especially ones implying cannabis consumers indulge their munchies with mindless consumption of unhealthy snacks when the reality is cannabis appeals to what The Economist dubs the “health-conscious inebriate,” citing a poll that 72 percent of American consumers thought cannabis was safer than alcohol. A 2018 The New Yorker headline declared cannabis to be a wellness industry in California where, in fact, a cannabinoid cousin of THC and CBD is starting to garner a whole lot of buzz.

Instead of stimulating appetites, THCV may suppress those hunger pangs. When 2021 is declared the year of THCV, you can say you heard it here first.

CONSUMPTION AND CONSUMERISM Cannabis has moved so far beyond the clichés of yore. Tie-dye tees, bell-bottom cords, dancing bear patches, plastic bongs, Ziploc baggies: these tired trends are so out of style, some have already circled back and left again. (Looking at you, tie-dye.) The stoner kids of yesterday are the cannabis entrepreneurs, enthusiasts, and connoisseurs of today. And as they’ve aged, their tastes in cannabis aged with them, like the fine wine they can now afford. Cannabis consumers have money to burn. And since we live in a capitalist society (an unjust one where people remain locked up for nonviolent drug charges in states that earn taxes off now-legal cannabis DECEM BER 2019

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PHOTOS COURTESY OF BARNEYS NEW YORK, INC.

The High End at Barneys New York in Beverly Hills

sales—that’s a whole layered story for a different day), money makes things happen. And what’s happening now is the emergence of a cannabis experience elevated to a higher level. If you were paying attention to the pop-culture cues over the decades, you would have seen the high-end highs coming. When cannabis prohibition began its slow-and-steady march to its forthcoming end, it emerged from the black market with an established following of consumers—loyal cannabis consumers with no brand loyalty, because cannabis brands didn’t exist. Dealers did, growers did, activists, advocates, and believers, too. But the concept of cannabis brands was all brand-new. With strict laws surrounding where the substance can be marketed,

sold, advertised, distributed, and more, establishing customer loyalty in this industry is more difficult than it would seem on the surface. What differentiates one edible brand from another, one vape pen from the next is complicated to discern for those who aren’t well versed in the modern verbiage or its meaning. (Full-spectrum distillate, live resin, 2:1 ratios, oh my!) This is where marketing and branding comes into play. And with marketing and branding comes the emergence of new market segments, including the ultra-luxury category. It is from within that category that future trends are likely to emerge. That’s how trends play out, as Miranda Priestly (played by Meryl Streep) explained to her new assistant in one iconic scene of The Devil Wears Prada. (If

“Expensive breeds expensive things. You wouldn’t have expensive cannabis if you didn’t have people who wanted to buy expensive cannabis.” —Karyn Wagner, Paradigm Cannabis Group

you haven’t seen it in a while, a quick refresher: “The color of the shirt you are wearing right now was determined years ago by high-end designers preparing their collections for fashion GOT MONEY TO BLOW? week runways.”) This Caleb Siemon Trickle-down trends Blown Art Glass are a hierarchical proWater Pipe will cess whereby individuals set you back with high status establish about $950. fashion trends, only to be imitated by lower-status individuals wearing cheaper versions of the same styles. “It’s always been a thing,” says Karyn Wagner, CEO of Paradigm Cannabis Group, a women-owned extraction company specializing in pre-rolls and extracts made from small-batch sun-grown flower. “There’s always been those products that are better than others. But now, with adult use, we have to be more brand-conscious. With DECEM BER 2019

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that, how do you distinguish yourself from someone else? Why is this better? What makes it better?”

PHOTOS (FROM TOP): KATHLEEN HARRISON, KIKOKO HIGH TEA / COURTESY OF BEBOE

SOME LIKE IT HAUTE With any luxury good, consumers want the assurance of quality and efficacy, Wagner says. But you can never underestimate the prestige that comes with a high price tag. “The moneyed class always loves expensive items,” she says. “This normalizes it in their world. It brings in folks who didn’t normally have the desire. It made it OK in their class. Expensive breeds expensive things. You wouldn’t have expensive cannabis if you didn’t have people who wanted to buy expensive cannabis.” Jenny Le Coq, president of Le Coq & Associates, a marketing and communications firm in San Francisco that represents Kikoko cannabis-infused botanical mints, points out that most people typically don’t seek out a cheap bottle of wine, but look for something fine, trustworthy, and familiar. They want to know the winery, its reputation, who recommends the vintage. “People are looking at wines today with a more discerning eye—how their grapes

With any luxury good, consumers want the assurance of quality and efficacy. Luxury doesn't always have to indicate price, but what it must indicate is quality.

are grown, for example,” Le Coq says. “People are looking at cannabis in the same way: with a discerning eye.” “Discerning” can add up to big money, for sure. Anecdotal stories abound in national media outlets, suggesting couples in Colorado will drop several bills on “cannagars” and other high-end party favors to celebrate weddings and anniversaries. At The High End, Barneys New York’s luxury cannabis lifestyle shop in Beverly Hills, shoppers can splurge on a $1,475 sterling silver bud grinder or a $950 water pipe. New York fashion brand Alice + Olivia partnered with luxury cannabis brand Kush Queen to debut a CBD wellness line earlier this year—bath bomb, body lotion, bubble bath with lavender. Alice + Olivia packaging features CEO Stacey Bendet’s signature “StaceFace” motif, with big sunglasses and a bold red lip. A timeless statement-making style that trendsetters of every era make their own while trendy types try to emulate the overall aesthetic. That’s just the way things work. To be fair, luxury doesn’t have to mean $$$$. What it must indicate, however, is quality. “Luxury is an assigned

label. It is typically assigned by marketers,” Le Coq says. “So, what do you want cannabis to be? As a consumer, how do you perceive luxury? The concept is really defined differently by every person. We want people to experience something that is luxurious. Not only the packaging is beautiful, the taste is beautiful, the place you are put into mentally is a nice, beautiful place.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lori Tobias is a lifelong journalist based on the Oregon Coast, where she lives with her husband, Chan, and two rescue pups, Luna and Monkey.

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WOKE, NOT WASTED They say they’re not alcoholics, and they’re certainly not anonymous. What is sober curious—and can sobriety really be fluid? TEXT ROBYN GRIGGS LAWRENCE

I

drink badly, and I have a lot of fun doing it (when I remember). That’s a lethal combination, and when you throw in my unfortunate discovery of White Claw—I can drink as many as I want and never feel full!—I flamed out with alcohol last winter. On February 1, just as everyone else was celebrating the end of Dry January and just ahead of the Summer of the Claw, I swore off the seltzer. I figured I’d give myself one month (note: the year’s shortest) to reset. It wasn’t an easy 28 days, but when March 1 rolled around, I felt better than I’d felt in years. The

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chronic inflammation I had attributed to everything from gluten sensitivity to genetics was clearing. I saw the light, and there was no going back. I thought sobriety would be lonely, that every Saturday night would be Netflix. I forgot the Brett Kavanaugh generation isn’t in charge of culture anymore (thank God). Millennials and Gen Xers aren’t interested in swilling beer until they black out like we did in the ’80s. Sober is sexy—or, as hipsobriety.com sees it, “sobriety is the new black.” On Instagram, there are influencers such as @stylishlysober, @thesoberglow, and the darker @fucking_sober

and hashtags like #soberliving, #soberAF, and #sobercurious. Millie Gooch, who posts as @sobergirlsociety, encourages her nearly 60,000 followers with inspirational messages like “Mocks not cocks” and “Sobriety: a surefire way to improve your wellbeing and your Uber rating.” Just like that, I’m a cool kid—with a huge range of new options on Saturday night (and beyond). I’m exploring elixirs made with raw cacao, maca, and horny goat weed at Tonic Herban Lounge just a few blocks from my home in downtown Boulder (I can walk home after imbibing, and it amuses me that I don’t need to). I can

do yoga and shake it before dawn at a Daybreaker dance party (daybreaker.com) in Denver, one of 27 cities where the alcohol-free early morning rave pops up and invites people to “sweat, dance, and connect with ourselves in community.” I’m surely not alone in this realization that life is better without booze. Worldwide, alcohol consumption fell by 1.6 percent last year. Led by young people, heavy-hitting countries like Russia, Canada, Japan, and the UK are seeing drinking rates as well as tolerance toward intoxication decline. An international survey found that about a third of people wanted


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cus, Presence, and Deep Connection” is February 14–16, 2020, at Massachusetts’ renowned wellness retreat center Kripalu). Her take is that a lot of Americans might not have a “problem” with alcohol but see it as getting in the way of their healthy lifestyles. “We eat well. We exercise. We meditate,” the press release for Sober Curious states. “So, why do we… still drink?” Warrington wants to to reduce their alcohol APPS FOR THAT know why the only peointake because of everyple who don’t drink are Loosid: Digital platform for sober dating, destinations, and meetups Sober Grid: “The worldʼs most popular mobile sober community” thing from sexual regret the ones who can’t and Twenty-Four Hours a Day: Inspiration through daily meditations and embarrassment to asks, “What if I am just…a little bit addicted?” physical health. A 2018 Call me old school, survey found that nearly but a little bit addicted 40 percent of global consounds a lot like a little sumers want to drink less pushing more women, mi- As Sean Paul Mahoney norities, and poor people writes on The Fix, a web- bit pregnant. I worry that for health reasons. to the bottle, according to site about addiction and In the US, CNBC repeople who shouldn’t ports, 52 percent of adults a study published in JAMA recovery, “I didn’t get so- will take the advice of ber to be cool. I just got John Costa, who writes are trying to lower their al- Psychiatry. The national on twentytwowords.com cohol intake, and underage Institute for Alcohol Abuse sober to stop dying.” and Alcoholism reports drinking has steadily dethat being sober curiclined in the last 10 years. that 17 million adults in A LITTLE BIT ADDICTED? ous is like being bi-curiBut only 21 percent of US the US are alcohol de“Sober curious” became ous—you don’t always adults in a CivicScience pendent, and the Centers a thing after Harperhook up with people of poll said they had any for Disease Control and Collins released Ruby the same sex, and you interest in drinking less Prevention says one in Warrington’s Sober Cudon’t have to cut out or not at all, and most of six binge drink—defined rious: The Blissful Sleep, drinking forever. “Be those were 21- to 34-year- as drinking four or more Greater Focus, Limitless sober half the time,” he old, vegan-leaning flexitar- drinks over two hours or Presence, and Deep Conwrites, “and sauced the ians who practice yoga and until blood alcohol reaches nection Awaiting Us All on other half.” He’s joking, consume cannabis daily. 0.08—nearly once a week. the Other Side of Alcohol but those are dangerous Women, especially those For this White Claw guzin 2018. Warrington also words for me. That’s the in their 30s and 40s, are zler, that definition is, well, has a podcast, runs Club life I was living: sober by drinking more than ever. sobering. I called that hap- Söda NYC (featuring day + tanked by night = Booze still rules for py hour. sober events like Kundbalance. most Americans, and Giving up alcohol isn’t alini Disco), and stages Like all disorders (and “increased stress and dea hashtag for a lot of peo- events (“Sober Curious: pretty much everything moralization” is actually ple. It’s not even a choice. Choosing Sobriety for Fo- in our culture), alcohol DECEM BER 2019

SOBERING STUDIES

Alcohol accounts for nearly 1 in 10 deaths of people aged 15 to 49 and is the leading risk factor for disease and premature death. Source: Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Binge drinking rates in states where cannabis is legal fell to 9 percent below the national average and 11 percent below non-legal states in 2016. Source: Cowen & Co.

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SPIRITS FOR NEXT-GEN PARTIERS The joke goes that nonalcoholic drinks are like listening to porn on the radio, but times have changed. Theyʼre the CBD of the alcohol world. Nonalcohol (NA) beverages are a bright spot in a declining alcohol market, and their sales are expected to grow 32 percent by 2022, according to a Bon Appetit report. Todayʼs creative, health-inducing craft beverages are a lot more than just alcohol-free.

BEER

Athletic IPA: Robust alcohol-free craft brew Heineken OO: The OGʼs first NA brew OʼDoulʼs: Anheuser-Buschʼs classic has new limited-edition meant-for-Instagram cans by local artists in New York, Chicago, and LA

WINE

Napa Hills: Blend of fruit-flavored water and VitaRes (antioxidant blend with resveratrol, red grape skin, and red wine extract) with as many antioxidants as red wine O.Vine: Grape-infused wine water with “the health benefits of the real thing”

use runs on a spectrum. I was at the end that spent hours upon hours researching whether drinking while on this antibiotic would really make me projectile vomit and scoffed at friends as they struggled through Dry January, Dry July, Sober September, and Sober October. I wasn’t interested in giving up drinking for any reason or any amount of time, until I had to give it up for life. Warrington, who sees reducing alcohol intake as another step in the wellness revolution, is at the other end of the spectrum—and she is aware of the difference between recovering from alcohol addiction and feeling better during yoga. I hope all of her fol-

lowers are, too, because the last thing most drinkers need is a loophole. I want to believe the trend Warrington is leading toward spirits-free activities and thoughtfulness about alcohol’s role in our culture—where every ritual, celebration, loss, entertainment, and even sporting event is cause for a drink—is not a trend but a movement. That we’ll look back at “mommyjuice” like we shake our heads at “mother’s little helper” pills from the ’60s and ’70s. The infrastructure to support sobriety is being built, and public opinion is turning. After centuries of going hard, America is getting woke, not wasted. Cheers to that.

SOBERING STUDIES

A British study of Dry January abstainers found that 82 percent felt a sense of achievement, 62 percent slept better, and 49 percent lost some weight.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Robyn Griggs Lawrence is the author of the bestselling Cannabis Kitchen Cookbook and Pot in Pans: A History of Eating Cannabis.

SPIRITS

Curious Elixirs: Individually bottled alcohol-free craft cocktails High Rhode by Kin: “Euphorics” made from nootropics and adaptogens, including 5-HTP, rhodiola, and caffeine Ritual Whiskey: “As a veggie burger is to beef, or almond milk is to dairy, Ritual is an alternative to traditional whiskey” Seedlip Spice 94: Gin-like blend of Jamaican allspice berry, cardamom, and citrus peel Stryyk: “Zero-proof spirits,” including Not Vodka, Not Rum, and Not Gin Three Spirit: “Social elixir” made from yerba mate, lionʼs mane, damiana, and cacao

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TING (Purple Tangie X Orange Creamsicle)

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LOREM IPSUM

Bus prempor dit quunto tem ipis alit aut exped quia cum eliciet audam renit, eaquat ute

THE

HOUSE OF MIRRORS: Search for connection in Yayoi Kusamaʼs surreal forest of soft polka-dot-covered tentacles.

Polka Dots and Mirrors Yayoi Kusama’s castle of shed tears transcends the selfie backdrop. TEXT CHRISTINE LAVOSKY

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Yayoi Kusama’s Love is Calling installation at the Institute of Contemporary Art is a Technicolor oasis, an otherworldly departure from reality. In Kusama’s world, ordinary materials such as wood, metal, and vinyl are transformed into tentacle-shaped soft sculptures surrounded by mirrors. Walking through it, you get the impression this surreal landscape repeats itself into infinity. The luminous tentacles, covered in Kusama’s signature polka dots, appear to

grow out of the floor and ceiling, changing colors as you wander. A recording of Kusama reading an original love poem, “Residing in a Castle of Shed Tears,” in Japanese plays in a loop, relaying a bittersweet message about life, death, the search for connection, and the artist’s hope to spread a universal message of love through her art. The poem’s English translation is printed along the exhibit wall and is worth a read before immersing yourself in Kusama’s ex-

panded consciousness. The artist, who has been creating infinity rooms since the 1960s, openly speaks about her struggles with mental health and calls her installations a step inside her world. Early on in life, Kusama realized she needed to create a comfortable world for herself to reside in, both emotionally and physically. She redefines the idea of safe spaces. Kusama’s intentional departure from reality through art stems from her traumatic childhood.


COURTESY DAVID ZWIRNER, NEW YORK; OTA FINE ARTS, TOKYO/SINGAPORE/SHANGHAI; VICTORIA MIRO, LONDON/VENICE. © YAYOI KUSAMA

Raised by an emotionally abusive and prohibitive mother, she was haunted by persistent nightmares and found comfort in colorful material forms. Pumpkins became a soothing force in her life. Whenever she came into contact with one, she entered a meditative state, shifting all her focus to the form in front of her. She cherished this state of being, as it was intensely different from her harrowing day-today existence. The polka dots decorating the soft sculptures—as well as many of Kusama’s other pieces— originated from hallucinations the artist began having when she was 10 years old. She has said the dots act as a “a way to infinity.” Having struggled with an anxiety disorder since childhood, Kusama has voluntarily resided fulltime in a psychiatric institution since 1977. Much of her work has been characterized by her compulsiveness and is influenced by her desire to escape from emotional trauma. Her neurosis, as well as comfort, manifests itself in repetition, especially of polka dots, but also in similar versions of the same form, and of course, the idea of infinity. The work of Japan’s most prominent contemporary artist often serves

as a backdrop for selfies. Searching the hashtag #yayoikusama on Instagram brings up some 842,000 posts. Yet her work isn’t based on vanity or a pursuit for attention. Instead, the artist writes that it is about obliteration. For Kusama, art— especially large-scale exhibits, vivid colors, and abstract shapes—is an attempt to obliterate her pain and anxiety. The exhibit, which runs until February 7, 2021, is large enough to comfortably accommodate six people. Kusama’s intention is for vis-

Early on in life, Kusama realized she needed to create a comfortable world for herself to reside in, both emotionally and physically.

itors to have their own personal experience, but also share this unique space with each other. She urges us to connect with each other—to make our way through the hardships of life to a communal peace. As Kusama reaches her 90s, the installation also beckons visitors to imagine the afterlife and what may lie beyond our humanly consciousnesses. A place beyond reality, where hate, distress, and loneliness don’t exist. Institute of Contemporary Art icaboston.org

INFINITY AND BEYOND: Yayoi Kusama, who turned 90 last March, considers polka dots to be a manifestation of infinity, inspired by hallucinations she had as a child.

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THE

Cultural Calendar

December is busy with tea parties, art exhibitions, and Santas running in Speedos. TEXT CAITLIN MOAKLEY

December in New England could mean days and nights spent cozied up at home, away from winter’s chill. Fortunately, Boston has a robust community of creatives that will get you out and about. Whether you’re craving art, food, music, a community gathering, or all of the above, we’ve got you covered with this hand-picked list of events that are well-worth braving the elements for. 42 BOSTO N

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Staged. New Visions of Boston Music Photography Dec. 1–14 Dorchester Art Project, Boston dorchesterartproject.org

Skip the Small Talk Dec. 2 Trident Booksellers and Café, Boston tridentbookscafe.com

Queers with Beers Dec. 2 Aeronaut Brewing Co., Somerville aeronautbrewing.com

La Boite Lunch: Mastering Spice Dec. 3 Sarma, Somerville sarmarestaurant.com

Tea Basics Dec. 4 Mem Tea Training Center & Tasting Room, Cambridge memteaimports.com

Join the Mem Tea team for a night of exploration through tea. Get ready to steep in a bevy of information provided by the knowledgeable staff in Davis Square. In


LEFT: TEA BASICS BELOW: THE BLUE LIGHT BANDITS RIGHT: SOWA WINTER FESTIVAL

this class, you’ll find a new appreciation for five types of tea that will keep you warm through the colder months.

SSRun (Santa Speedo Run) Dec. 4 Back Bay, Boston ssrunners.org

Kush Groove Squish + Video Game Night Dec. 5 Kush Groove Shop, Boston kushgroove.com

SoWa Winter Festival Dec. 6–8 SoWa, Boston sowaboston.com

Winter Revelry Dec. 6–7 Innovation and Design Building, Boston Idbldg.com

Fruits in Decay Exhibit Dec. 7–March 1 Harvard Museum of Natural History, Cambridge hmnh.harvard.edu

Summer fruits have come and gone, but now you have a chance to see what happens to them beyond their ripe stage, thanks to Rudolf Blaschka. They’re captured in a glass flower exhibit so

visitors can observe rotting and decay in the most beautiful presentation.

The Vegan Market Dec. 8 Somerville Armory, Somerville artsatthearmory.org

Hearth Community Night Dec. 9 The Green Room, Somerville mirandashearth.com

Rupi Kaur Dec. 12 Shubert Theatre, Boston bochcenter.org

Kush Groove Paint & Edibles Night Dec. 13 Kush Groove Shop, Boston blog.kushgroove.com/ paint-night-boston/

Cultural Survival Bazaar Dec. 14–15 Cambridge Rindge and Latin School, Cambridge bazaar.culturalsurvival.org

Hammock Meditation Dec. 16 Swet Studio, Boston swetstudio.com

Free Thursdays at the ICA Dec. 19 The Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston icaboston.org

Music Under the Dome Dec. 20 Museum of Science, Boston mos.org

Chadwick Stokes & The Pintos: Calling All Crows Benefit Show Dec. 21 House of Blues, Boston houseofblues.com/boston

Urban Nutcracker Dec. 23 Shubert Theatre, Boston bochcenter.org

Harvard Square Chocolate Tour Dec. 27 Harvard Square, Cambridge offthebeatenpathfoodtours.com

Jamaica Pond Parkrun 5k Dec. 28 Harvard University Arnold Arboretum, Boston parkrun.us/jamaicapond

New Year’s Eve ’70s Night Party with the Blue Light Bandits Dec. 31 Luckyʼs Lounge, Boston luckyslounge.com

The best spot in town for your NYE celebration, Lucky’s Lounge will host Massachusetts’ beloved Blue Light Bandits for a night of fun and funk sure to please music lovers of all tastes. Try not to groove; we dare you.

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P R O M O T I O N A L F E AT U R E M YO F U A N B U J U T S U D OJ O

Preserving Life Through the Martial Way Ancient martial arts and survival skills can help us navigate the modern world.

O

ne of the conflicts that arise in taking the martial path is that at some point there is realization and even an impulse to shrink from the violence we see in the human condition. Although we are trained to perform violence when required and confront death in order to transcend the limits of worldly existence, there is a dramatic moral crisis that is central to developing the faith needed to perform our sacred duty. A paradox interconnects disciplined action and freedom. We must explore within ourselves concepts such as duty,

“combat body skills,” and it takes into account the concept of Juppo Sessho no Jutsu, or “contact in ten directions.” Juppo Sessho is a vast idea that suggests a different mode of thinking and perception, including the ideas of foresight and perception. Other concepts such as Gogyo no Kata and San Shin, refer to the five elemental archetypes of Earth, Water, Fire, Wind and Void that allow strategies to be applied to the way a particular technique or sequence might be influenced. To know these basic principles is more than just an academic or conscious understanding. You must have the ability to integrate these concepts through flashes of enlightenment during practice and meditation. Only then will you develop the basic feeling of actual fighting as well as discovering the strategies needed to feel the real attitude of Budo Taijutsu.

discipline, action, and knowledge to allow for our ultimate understanding of phenomenal existence. Our freedom lies in disciplined action that is both performed without attachment to the action itself while being dedicated with loving devotion to those we hold dear. How can we continue to act in a world of pain without suffering and despair—and enable ourselves as warriors to control our passion and become men and women of discipline? The real battlefield is the human body, where within this material realm, we Myofu An Bujutsu Dojo struggle to know ourselves. 159 Savage Road, Milford, NH 03055 “Budo Taijutsu” literally means myo-fu-an.com

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Cannabis and...

The Life Cannabis Company View our cannabis products available on our website: ma.temescalwellness.com

Recreational & Medical Cannabis Retail Locations in Massachusetts Hudson | Pittsfield | Framingham

Please Consume Responsibly. This product may cause impairment and may be habit forming. For use only by adults 21 years of age or older or persons holding a patient registration card. Keep out of the reach of children. This product has not been analyzed or approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). There is limited information on the side effects of using this product, and there may be associated health risks. Marijuana use during pregnancy and breast-feeding may pose potential harms. It is against the law to drive or operate machinery when under the influence of this product. KEEP THIS PRODUCT AWAY FROM CHILDREN. There may be health risks associated with consumption of this product. Marijuana can impair concentration, coordination, and judgment. The impairment effects of edible marijuana may be delayed by two hours or more. In case of accidental ingestion, contact poison control hotline 1-800-222-1222 or 9-1-1. This product may be illegal outside of MA.


P R O M O T I O N A L F E AT U R E R E VO L U T I O N A R Y C L I N I C S

dozen patient advocates. A third store that will be 6,500 square feet is opening soon in the Central Square area of Cambridge. “It will be the largest and hopefully one of the most successful stores in Massachusetts,” Cooper says. Revolutionary Clinics is seeking affiliates for other retail locations. Getting into a chancy but promising industry is a common exercise for Cooper, a Harvard Business School MBA and classic serial entrepreneur who worked in six high-tech startups in the Boston area over the last 30 years as CEO—growing them, taking them public, or selling them. His last stint as CEO was for a company in the digital health space just over a year ago. Soon after, he began looking for his next gig. A business plan presented by Revolutionary Clinics caught his eye. “I wasn’t a cannabis guy 14 months ago when I joined the company,” he says. “But I saw the scale of industry, the beauty of the plant, and the needs of thousands of MMJ patients across the Bay State. I saw that Massachusetts, state-of-the-art commercial kitchen set as a limited license state, was going up specifically to produce high-quality to move slowly. But it had a robust cannabis-infused edibles. economy and demand. So, I thought that Revolutionary Clinics produces 110 would be a great place to do this type of products and also licenses four brands business and provide a valuable service from different states, with distribution to patients in need at the same time.” to Revolutionary Clinics’ retail stores as To evolve as a dispensary business, well as other medical and retail stores he says, it’s simply a matter of taking in the area that offer medical cannabis care of your customers—giving them home delivery service as well. superior products at a fair price with Customers can buy flower; pre-roll; dis- great service. “If you can do those tillate and CO² vape cartridges; concenthings, like any other business, you are trates; edibles, including THC capsules; going to create some great customer lozenges and fruit chews; tinctures; topi- relationships, which is most important to cals; infused peanut butter and hazelnut/ us as a company.” chocolate spread; olive oil; and specialty formulations for sleep and focus. The company has two retail stores up and running, including its original medical dispensary in Somerville and Revolutionary Clinics a second in Cambridge, serviced by a revolutionaryclinics.org

Matching Big-City Demand with BigPlan Aspirations

Cannabis history is being made within one of the most historical buildings in the state, one step at a time.

I

n a former shoe factory, one cannabis business has found its footing. “We planted our first seeds just over a year ago, after a five-year medical license hunt in Massachusetts,” says Keith Cooper, CEO of Revolutionary Clinics. “We built out half of this beautiful 250,000-square-foot brick shoe factory, the former Cole Haan Shoe Factory building in Fitchburg, for cultivation, processing, and edible production.” Equipment in the building includes a CO² and ethanol extraction program to create distillates and other concentrates and geothermal water-cooled LED lights for cultivation. Recent renovations created a grow space of 75,900 square feet, six times larger than the original grow space. They have also installed a 2,000-square-foot

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THE END

Beyond Walls paired Puerto Rican artist Celso Gonzalez with local youth to create this mosaic mural at the Boys & Girls Club of Lynn.

Lighting Up Lynn Beyond Walls is helping make Lynn a cultural and artistic hub, with public parks, large-scale lighting and art installations, and a thriving street art festival. Not bad for a three-person startup that launched in 2017.

Lynn is rebranding, and Beyond Walls is helping to make the town a cultural and artistic hub that reflects its diversity and draws the kind of crowds Salem gets at Halloween and Revere pulls in with its sand castle competition. The place-making and public art nonprofit is transforming underutilized public spaces into gather50 BOSTO N

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ing spaces, producing large-scale artworks on buildings throughout Lynn, illuminating MBTA underpasses, and developing a threeacre waterfront park by the Lynn ferry terminal. The three-person startup sponsors a street art festival that brings in thousands every year. “We have some lofty goals,” says

Beyond Walls executive director Al Wilson. “But we have something special here—we play well with government agencies, and we’ve found a way to get big in-kind commitments.” Beyond Walls was launched in 2017 to address walkability downtown, largely because of inadequate lighting on the Mar-

ket Street Bridge, the Washington Street Bridge, and in Central Square. With help from government and private entities, the local electricians’ union, and a Boston architecture firm, Beyond Walls installed dynamic LED lighting under the bridges. Wilson’s team convinced the city to override a neon ban

and let them hang 11 vintage neon signs, and it has brought in artists from around the globe to produce more than 60 murals. “Beyond Walls is a model that can and should be replicated across the state and around the country,” Wilson says. Beyond Walls beyondwalls.org

JIM MURPHY PHOTOGRAPHY

TEXT ROBYN GRIGGS LAWRENCE


Profile for Sensi Media Group, LLC

Sensi Magazine - Boston (December 2019)  

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Sensi Magazine December 2019 - Boston Digital Edition