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TOKEWELL | STACK PAPER, CATCH VAPORS

16 MAR/APR 201 7

RISING SUN

WE SESSION WITH LYRICIST MOD SUN AND RAP ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF STAYING POSITIVE AND STANDING UNDER NONE.

BAKED

PEPPER RAE TALKS WITH US ABOUT HOW HER CBD CONFECTIONS WERE THE CATALYST FOR HER RECIPE OF SUCCESS.

VAPE ORGANICS

ISSUE 16 | MARCH/APRIL 2017

WE SIT WITH THE CREATORS OF ONE THE VAPE GAMES MOST REVERED BRANDS AND TALK ABOUT THE SIGNIFICANCE OF USING CERTIFIED ORGANIC PRODUCTS. $4.20 U.S. $5.20 CAN.

OUTLAWED PORSCHE ICON MAGNUS WALKER TALKS SHOP WITH US ABOUT HIS OUT OF CONTROL HOBBY AND HOW THAT HELPED FUEL HIS ROAD TO SUCCESS.


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FEATURES

26Magnus Walker

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Porsche icon Magnus Walker talks shop with us about his Out of Control Hobby and how that helped fuel his road to success.

We session with lyricist MOD SUN and rap about the importance of staying positive and Standing Under None.

54 PEPPER & CO MEDIBLES

We sit with the creators of one the vape games most revered brands and talk about the significance of using certified organic products.

A staunch supporter and founder of the cannabis industries most respected advocacy organizations, Keith Stroup sits with us to talk about the importance of unity and NORML-izing the political landscape.

Pepper Rae talks with us about how her CBD confections were the catalyst for her recipe of success.

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PUBLISHED BY FR3SHLAB CREATIVE GROUP, LLC PRESIDENT, FOUNDING PARTNER RICHARD COYLE RICH@TOKEWELL.COM

SILVER LININGS

CO-FOUNDER SENIOR V.P., OPERATIONS CINDY GALINDO CINDY@TOKEWELL.COM DESIGN HONEST KITTY STUDIO "NO-NONSENSE DESIGN"

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EDITOR-IN-CHIEF RICHARD COYLE EDITOR LEILANI ANDERSON DIRECTOR OF FINANCE YVONNE MORTON YVONNE@TOKEWELL.COM CONTRIBUTING WRITERS STEVE PASTEL, CV SCIENCES, PATRICK TAYLOR AND MAXIMILLIAN STERLING.

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t’s been over 60 days since President Trump has taken office, and it has tested the strength and unity of our great nation. If history is any indication of our fortitude, we too shall overcome this, for through adversity, people tend to come together. Wherever your political loyalties lie, the silver lining is that this trying time has strengthened us. We aren't just keyboard warriors with defeatist attitudes - we are actively doing something about it. What we must remember is to employ a positive mental attitude throughout all of this, and remain steadfast and vigilant in whatever we do. At the end of the day, we are all accountable for our own situations, whether personal milestones, political affiliations, or business ventures. The one thing we can take away from all of this is the importance of being unified, by standing together as one. With more states legalizing the use of cannabis and recognizing its benefits coupled with the vape industry’s glimmering hope under Trump’s administration, that my friends is a silver lining. With the cloud of anxiety and uncertainty in 2017 hovering above us, we need to come to the realization that we can only control what we can control, and that is moving forward with a mindset of positivity and unity.

LEAD PHOTOGRAPHERS LEAH MORIYAMA | TAADOW69K CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS HIGH TIMES, NORML AND DIEGO OLIVERAS SOCIAL MEDIA STEVE BUSTRIN CREATIVE AGENCY VIRL CREATIVE | STUDIO 93 Tokewell Magazine is published bi-monthly by Fr3shlab Creative Group, LLC. Tokewell Magazine does not condone the illegal use or obtainment of cannabis. All content within this magazine is copyright protected and may not be reproduced in part or in whole without explicit written consent from the publisher. Tokewell Magazine is strictly for entertainment purposes only, and is not to be held liable for any misleading orinaccurate material produced herein. ©2017 FR3SHLAB CREATIVE GROUP LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

“We are only as strong as we are united, as weak as we are divided.”

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THE PROHIBITION ERA COLLECTOR MARKET WORDS BY STEVEN PASTEL | FOUNDER, SKELETON KEY

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ve been very fortunate to participate in the vape gear collectors market for the last 3 years. I’ve seen the emergence of the tube mod-classical period of Caravela, ChiYou, and Glas, and the eventual rise and take over of the box mods. Being in the prohibition era of vaping, I find the direction of the high-end market to be both hopeful and exciting. I’d like to briefly discuss what I am seeing and predictions of what is coming. The anti-vape policies of the federal and local governments have driven the collector market underground. The artisan vape gear manufacturers cannot afford to comply with the regulatory environment created by the FDA. Their only chance to thrive is to do business in a place where regulatory eyeballs are absent. Today if you are looking for high-end vape gear, no longer can you stand in line at your local vape shop. It’s all about the secret buying groups. Here people are bidding up gear to upwards of $10k. Groups are usually very exclusive, and new members must be vouched for by an existing member. Group feeds are filled with high-end vape gear photo posts which members respond with a flurry of memes and thrash doves. The interaction between manufacturer and buyer

is like nothing that I’ve ever seen before. In the buying groups, manufacturers get feedback instantly and build lasting relationships with their customers. Vape gear in this market has evolved from mostly metal construction to the utilization of very exotic materials. I have seen stabilized wood, Damascus steel, timascus, gemstone, and even meteorite. The vape market has spawned products that resemble a blend of high tech gadgetry and jewelry. The community has been wondering for years when the obsession with so-called overpriced vape gear will come to an end. Maybe the answer to that question is when will people stop buying Cartier lighters or Christian Louboutin shoes. Is there an end to the desire for nice stuff, and why would it be different with vape gear? I have never seen its equivalent in any other marketplace, and the fact that it is thriving in the prohibition era, leads me to think that what we maybe looking at the future of luxury goods. Instead of wondering when this market will end, another question might be when will this type of experience traverse to other marketplaces.

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TREND ALERT!

HEMP-DERIVED CBD VAPE E-LIQUIDS WORDS BY: STAFF AT PURIFIED LIQUIDS, A CV SCIENCES BRAND

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hile killing time scrolling through social media, odds are you’ve seen a post or two about Cannabidiol-more commonly known as CBD. Within the last few years, CBD has been sprinting its way towards the mainstream. Even just a few months ago, MMA fighter Nate Diaz was seen on television, vaping CBD after a fight. You might be asking yourself, “What is so great about CBD? And why would I want it in my vape?” Cannabidiol (CBD) is a promising phytocannabinoid found in the Cannabis Sativa L. plant. It can be extracted from both cannabis flower and from the agricultural hemp plant. CBD has grown in popularity because it has a wide range of benefits, from promoting a healthy mental outlook to maintaining healthy sleep patterns, and it does not have the same mind-altering effects as THC. Unlike cannabis-sourced CBD, hemp-derived CBD products are not limited by medical cannabis laws and can be purchased online

or at your local health food store, and can be purchased by anyone of legal age. CBD products come in many delivery systems ranging from capsules to sublinguals, but did you know that the one of the quickest and most efficient ways to take CBD is through vaporization? As more CBD e-liquids are created for the vape market, you’ll find flavors that would put Harry Potter’s favorite jelly beans to shame. The hard part is not only choosing your preferred flavor, but finding a high quality CBD e-liquid that you can trust. Being on the cutting edge of a new industry with no clear regulations or standards, we as consumers must demand a certain amount of transparency and quality from CBD e-liquid manufacturers. Just as the “2 Buck Chuck” differs from its Napa Valley counterpart, not all CBD e-liquids are created equal. CV Sciences’ is setting the standard for CBD e-liquid with

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their new vape line, Purified Liquids™. Manufactured with 100% crystalline CBD derived from agricultural hemp, Purified Liquids™ is the highest quality CBD vape on the market. Its proprietarybase formula is 100% non-synthetic, completely homogenous, created in-house, and free of all harmful residual solvents. Each product is then tested for quality and potency to ensure the consumer is getting the best product possible. Most CBD e-liquids today cannot be mixed with any other liquids, and often times the e-liquid formulation separates, making it difficult to use. Nearly all CBD e-liquids on the market need a tank specifically for CBD use only. Purified Liquids’ simple formula comprised of only vegetable glycerin (VG), propylene glycol (PG), hemp-derived CBD crystal, and natural flavoring, leaves no residue in your device and can be mixed freely with any other e-liquid.

So, when choosing a CBD e-Liquid, here are the five most important things to consider: • Is the CBD E-liquid homogenous? • Is the E-liquid cloudy or clear? • Does the product meet label claims? • Will it work in my vaporizer? • Is the CBD responsibly sourced? Our bodies are the greatest instruments we own. Empower yourself to make the most informed decision on the vape products you use and be choose a quality CBD e- liquid to help balance the system that’s designed to balance you. Learn more about CV Sciences’ new CBD vape e-liquids, Purified Liquids, at purifiedliquids.com.


HOW TO WIN THE WEST:

CALIFORNIA STANDS TALL FOR VAPING WORDS BY: PATRICK TAYLOR | VICE CHAIRMAN, CALIFORNIA SMOKE FREE ORGANIZATION

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heir initial meeting, held in a Howard Johnson conference room two sizes too small, asked only two things of those in attendance: “be on time and set aside any differences for the larger cause.” The ask was simple. Accomplishing it was no small feat.

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Meet the California Smoke Free Organization. Their mission is simple: To keep the vapor markets competitive for both small and big players, to ensure the long-term viability of the industry, to defeat bills that stifle innovation critical to public health, and to transform the public debate on electronic cigarettes aka vapor products. Additionally, to influence the language of new bills while in formation forging new relationships with public and state elected officials. Basically, given the radically disruptive nature of the Vapor Industry to the status quo, someone needs to be at the helm, helping to

shape the discussion. That someone is actually a group of people, The California Smoke Free Organization. California’s Vaping Industry generates more than one billion dollars every other month. That’s billion with a capital B. California is responsible for approximately 40% of the world’s Vapor Market. That’s why a year ago, while legislators clamored to regulate and tax the industry – a sobering realization came about: who speaks for California’s businesses? Just as our Founding Fathers before, industry leaders could not simply stand by and accept taxation without representation. That’s when Chris Jimenez, currently serving as the organization’s Secretary, reached out to the leaders of the world’s most prominent companies based in California and spearheaded the formation of a non-profit trade association – The California Smoke Free Organization. Quick to step up to the task ahead were many decision-makers of companies synonymous with vaping itself:

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Founding Members include Vapor Beast, Charlie’s Chalk Dust, Space Jam, Marina Vape, E-Cig Distributors, Vapor Shark, Cosmic Fog, Vapor DNA, Kilo, Propaganda, Saveur, Asmodus, ISM and many, many more. And there was much work to do. The CSFO has raised the funds necessary to employ some of state’s top lobbyists and legal minds in Sacramento, all in order to achieve the clear objectives laid out in their mission statement. Since the passage of Prop 56 with its impending 68% tax, The CSFO has worked closely with the Board of Equalization in defining exactly how the tax will be implemented. Beyond the work they are doing with VTA at the state level, The CSFO has partnered with the Vapor Technology Association (VTA) for insight and strategy into accomplishing broader, national goals. VTA has emerged as a leader in the fight to defend vapor against industry-killing federal regulations, coordinating associations across the United States and implementing a

multi-faceted public affairs campaign in Washington, DC. As one of the strongest and most unified voices in the vapor industry, The CSFO will continue to play a significant role as VTA fights to save our small businesses and ensure that vapor products remain on the market as a healthier alternative to tobacco. Thank you to everyone at Tokewell for this opportunity to share our message. If you are a California-based company, we encourage you to join us and be heard. For more information about The CSFO, go to www.californiasmokefreeorganization.org or email admin@californiasmokefreeorganization. org.


www.DetroitRockCandy.com ·  DetroitRockCandy

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Sweet potato, sugar cookie with marshmallow and strawberry sauce For wholesale inquiries, email wholesale@detroitrockcandy.com

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Cannazen offers the highest quality CBD products for the use of natural pain relief and healing. Their balm and lotion can be applied topically to the affected area in pain, and in minutes the CBD will help the alleviate the pain. This is the perfect product for people with arthritis, people with joint pains, and even for people sore from working out or playing sports.They also offer oil cartridges and tinctures for more temporary pain relief. What are you waiting for? Go to www.cannazenllc.com Wing International offers the highest quality THC-infused products to assist with temporary pain relief associated with a variety of ailments such as arthritis, backaches, muscle strains, sprains, bruises, and cramps. Their body cream and lotion and be applied topically to the affected area for instant pain relief, and their oil cartridges and tinctures can be used for full body pain relief. For more information please visit www.winginternationalusa.com and get relief now.

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NEW PRODUCTS MAR/APR 2017


PHIX by Brewell #16

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The folks at Brewell have done it again. Renowned for their delectable flavors, they now offer them in a modernized and portable, yet powerful device -- The Phix. The Phix is an all-in-one system targeted to provide one with a combination of portability and ease of use coupled with the distinguished flavors that Brewell is known for. The Phix showcases a striking hexahedron design with sharp lines and futuristic styling rivaling all of the closed loop systems currently on the market today. If cloud comps and tricks are your thing, Phix isn't for you. If you want something modern, portable and sexy to vape on, look no further and get your Phix.

NEW PRODUCTS

SHOP: PHIXVAPOR.COM

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NKTR SHAKE

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The artisans at SQN have done it again; this time with their installment of tobacco-free and impeccably crafted line of your favorite childhood dessert sans the calories. Shake up your tastebuds with NKTR Shake, the premium milkshake line by SQN. You’re welcome. STRAWBERRY SHAKE Strawberry Shake is a rich, refreshing take on an all-American classic – the strawberry milkshake. MINT SHAKE Cool your tastebuds with Mint Shake – this mint chip milkshake flavor is perfect for anyone looking for a breathtaking dessert flavor. MANGO SHAKE Mango Shake takes a sweet, tropical mango and blends it in a creamy, full-bodied milkshake that fans of the original NKTR Mango are sure to enjoy. TFN® BOILERPLATE NKTR Shake by SQN is the made with TFN® Nicotine, the only authentic brand of nicotine that is not derived from tobacco leaf, stem, or waste dust. TFN® Nicotine is odorless & tasteless and allows for a purer and more refined flavor profile.

NEW PRODUCTS

SHOP: VAPEREV.COM

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Purified Liquids by CV Sciences

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Infused with only the highest quality hemp-derived CBD crystal from CV Sciences, Purified Liquidsâ„¢ is the next level of CBD vape. This simple formulation contains only high-quality CBD, a 60/40 VG to PG ratio blend, and uses only natural flavors. Inertia is a guava honeydew flavor that is a tangy, tropical, and more fruit-forward. Isotope, also known as Watermelon chill, has a more refreshing sweet taste with a crisp minty finish. This is hands down our CBD vape of choice. SHOP: PURIFIEDLIQUIDS.COM

NEW PRODUCTS TOKEWELL MAGAZINE

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WOR D S BY: LEILANI AN DERS ON SN APS BY: D IEG O OLIVA RE S

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Living legends are a rare thing in this day and age. Not often do you see someone reinvent themselves into something so different, so earth shatteringly unique, that they change the face of an entire lifestyle. Take Bruce Lee for instance - a cultural icon whose free form style defined martial arts for years. Another mark Lee left on the world was his distinctive philosophy, teaching people to cultivate their truest selves in order to be more in harmony with the universe. This fluidity in existence is something that permeates through the ages, something that people continue to try and achieve even to this very day.

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o one embodies this philosophy more than Derek Smith, better known as the rapper MOD SUN. A man of many influences and a jack of all artistic trades, Mod Sun is all about being true to one’s self. He is a musician, a rapper, an author, a poet, an activist, a cultivator, an artist, and all around good humanitarian promoting inspiration and a constantly positive lifestyle.

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Probably one of the most diverse and interesting subjects we’ve ever covered, Mod Sun is in a category all his own. He looks like he could be John Lennon reincarnated, with his sunglasses, long locks, and 1960s flower child style. He graces his arms with all his greatest artistic influences - Jim Morrissey, Miles Davis, Frank Sinatra, Janis Joplin, Bob Marley and Andy Warhol adorn his epidermal real estate. Mod Sun was born into the wrong generation - the car he drives, the home he lives in, the clothes he wears, they’re all from an era long since passed. His very being pays homage to the cultural pioneers of the past, those who paved the way for modern day rock stars. And that’s exactly what makes his endeavors so successful - it engages the audience, inviting them to experience something so different from what’s already out there.

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“You need to get yourself on point before you can really help the world.”

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“I’m not inspired by anything happening right now,” he tells us. “We’re in a recycled state right now, and what I bring to the table is something that needs to be spoken for. True rebels, people that lived long ago, that’s what’s important to me, and I try to keep their spirit alive.” He injects every bit of himself into his work. “Songs will define me for the rest of my life,” he firmly believes. “I don’t put out anything that may be sacrificing the real essence of what I want to do.” The thing that stands out the most about Mod Sun isn’t his looks or his tattoos - it’s his positive attitude and belief in self

empowerment. It’s so integrated into who he is, it’s even in his name - Movement On Dreams Stand Under None, a phrase reminding all to follow their dreams, for no one can stop them. “Realize that this is your time, your story, your life,” Mod tells us. “You need to get yourself on point before you can really help the world. It’s a phrase meant to empower you.” Born in Minnesota to a home full of musical influences, Mod Sun pulled inspiration from everyone from the great Bob Dylan to the god of musicians, Prince. And while he started out as a drummer in post hardcore

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“To inspire my inspirations - that’s always at the forefront of everything I do.”

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“We’re in a recycled state right now, and what I bring to the table is something that needs to be spoken for.”

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band Four Letter Lie and later on Scary Kids Scaring Kids, Mod Sun has never let himself be defined by any single thing. With the publishing of his book Did I Ever Wake Up?, Mod completed one of many life dreams that of becoming an author before the age of 25. “The most beautiful thing about anything you wanna do is that the second that you’ve done it once, you become that,” he says. “Writing a book was one of those things. I realized that if I could write something real, people would read it.”. Now at 29, he has multiple publications under his belt as well as his musical career,

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which has veered away from his drumming days and brought him down the path of rap and hippie hop. And although he doesn’t quite consider himself a hip hop artist, he has found a comfortable home where he can reach all of his fans with his messages of positivity and empowerment. “This could just be another phase in my musical expedition,” he says. Well, a home for now, at least. Hard work and devotion to his projects are what make Mod Sun him - his appreciation of music helped produce a musician capable of playing piano, drums, and guitar. His love of poetry has produced a rapper who can tell


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you all about the top ten greatest poets of the twentieth century. His intense belief in making your dreams a reality fuels his positive lifestyle, something he encourages in all of his fans. “I absolutely love words and poetry,” he tells us. “When I first started rapping, I made all of my own music, all my own beats. I worked very hard to find my sound, and now ten years later, I’m finally about to drop a project that I am very proud of. It’s been a long time coming.” His album drops March 10, and his tour takes off in April.

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What motivates you? To inspire my inspirations - that’s always at the forefront of everything I do. If Warhol walked into the room, would he like what I’m doing artistically? If Bukowski read my work, would he like my writing? If Bob Dylan heard me, would he like the lyrics I’m singing? That’s what I work my hardest to do.

Tell us about your second album, Movie. So it’s called Movie because people picture God differently, and this is my image: I picture Him as someone in the sky sitting there in front of the TV, flipping through

Brandon Leidel CEO | Vapor Shark shot on location

channels, and each channel is a different person’s life. When he lands on my channel, I want to make sure He or She is entertained. I know they’re gonna flip past me, but I want them to watch my movie, and I want them to wanna come back to my movie. I want them to think, “Hey, I like this movie. Maybe I’ll give this guy whatever it takes to keep making this movie interesting for me.” I feel like I’m entertainment for whatever’s going on up there, and that I should be down here living as wildly and vibrantly as possible. I want to force incredible things to happen and to live through them and look at it all like parts of a giant movie that’ll make sense

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in the end. That’s what this album’s about - turning your life into a movie. It tells a story and it all flows together. I can't wait for people to hear it on March 10.

How is this album different from your previous works? I’ve always wanted to make a piece that was not a concept album, but still flowed together. It’s not easy to do that because you kind of have to have an idea of what to do with the album before you begin making it, and that’s where people get lost sometimes.This is the first time I’ve worked with a whole bunch of different producers. Doing so helped me try new things that I’d never

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done before. This album is a huge step in a direction of growth for me. I’m still working with the same movement and concept of positivity and inspiration, but feeding it to people in a new way so that it’s not the same thing all over again.

Speaking of trying new things, we know you’re a cannabis connoisseur of sorts. Are you a fan of new technology like vaping within the cannabis sector? You know, I can respect it, but I’m not really into wax and stuff like that. I more smoke to enjoy the ritual of smoking.

Any favorite strains? It changes a lot. Power Diesel has always been one of my favorites, Tangie, and I grow my own too, which I enjoy.

Any words to those trying to emulate the constant optimism lifestyle? The lifestyle we try to pursue is being able to make good out of any situation and to celebrate life. I want people to know that living life this way, constantly looking on the bright side, will be very fulfilling in the long run. As time goes on, the world will keep giving you gifts for the way you live. By no means does that mean you won’t get hit with challenges down the line - these challenges are just reminders of why it’s important to push yourself to be positive. Sometimes it’ll be difficult to see the gift in awful happenings, but if you keep shining, and you get through it, life will open back up again even brighter to you. The challenge is nothing more than just another beautiful gift, and don’t let anything crush your spirit.

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VAPING Organically WOR D S BY: LELAN I AN D ER SO N SNAPS BY: TAAD OW6 9K

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In a time when we’re becoming more and more aware of what we put into our bodies, it’s equally important to know whether or not the brands we support share the same concern. Companies overly-focused on profit may be more likely to cut corners that ultimately affect consumer well-being, and that’s a problem, especially in industries such as vape and cannabis. In a world where we have the ability to choose and shape the market and what it produces, what could be more imperative, more crucial, than what we choose to inhale?

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nter Vape Organics, an industryleading organic e-liquid company based in Southern California with a clear message—cooperation and quality is the way to go. Using only certified organic tobacco from local farms and high-quality vegan extracts for flavor, Vape Organics offers the first line of USDAcertified organic e-juices anywhere. This multifaceted company not only claims the organic title but practices what it preaches and has the credentials to prove it. The company’s focus is simple: to provide a premium and accessible user experience. Take their line of amazing premium e-juices no harmful chemical additives or artificial sweeteners in sight, yet they manage to boast some of the best-tasting juices on the market. With flavors like Apple Caramelo, Blackberry + Mint, and one of their most popular, Caffe Latte, that actually taste like the real thing, it’s amazing to think what the industry could do if more companies took it upon themselves to work together to create better products like Vape Organics has. We spoke with Sheerlie Ryngler, Daniela Vazquez, Eko Handoko, and

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“If we can hold our community’s industry leaders to a higher standard, demand that they care about what we need as much as we do, then all the world will be better for it.”

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Just part of TCI's massive organic refinery.

Tamara Okada about why going organic and teamwork are pertinent to the vape industry.

organic product with the highest level of accountability and manufacturing standards.”

Under the wing of parent company and well-established manufacturing group TCI Labs, Vape Organics was born from a need to elevate the vape industry. Chemical additives and artificial flavors ran rampant in the marketplace, and this dream team wanted to make something different, something clean and healthier that honored the standards instilled in them from TCI Labs. “We realized we really could create an amazing product reflecting a new standard for the industry,” founder Eko Handoko tells us. “We decided to use our experience to create a certified

Vape Organics’ manufacturing process was modeled by TCI Labs, which holds not only two organic certifications but also drug manufacturing and food processing licenses. This experience means that Vape Organics’ facility, manufacturing procedures, equipment and final products reflect the highest possible standards across industries. Using multiple clean rooms for their different processes, even the clean, supercritical CO2 extraction of nicotine is done in house—the first and only organic nicotine in the world. The company’s tobacco is sourced from small, certified

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organic family farms within the US, and is uniquely free of PG and other petroleumderived solvents. Committed to sustainability and animal cruelty-free practices, they do not use vegetable glycerin derived from palm, a common ingredient used in other juices that have led to deforestation across Asia. Vape Organics also takes a great deal of pride in the flavors they provide, all of which are made with real, plant-based flavor extracts—none of the fake stuff, and the result is phenomenal. “Mango Mystique actually tastes like a mango, not like mango candy,” Sheerlie Ryngler, Creative Director, says happily. The company’s process results in a super-pure product, which, with no

chemical residues or byproducts, is stronger than any other leading market equivalent. Everything the company develops has a lot of thought behind it before making it a reality— anything they produce is created with the idea of safety first, and the cutting edge technology they work with allows them a unique advantage to fulfill that criteria. Now that they’ve perfected their e-liquid game, they’ve taken it to the hardware sector with the same goal in mind: help the industry evolve with the prioritization of safety and user-friendliness. One example is the auto-temperature control settings on their popular Dagger mod. “With high heat

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community, and we’re empowered because of that… we’re not here to be objectified,” Daniela Vazquez, who manages social media, asserts.

Just another way that Vape Organics is ahead of the curve. Slowly but surely, the marketing strategy is changing, and women are taking a more active role in the community. Rather than just posing and showing skin, women are showing off their skills and knowledge about the products they promote. Companies like Vape Organics are a big part of what

facilitated this change. “Many women in the industry have approached and applauded us for this departure from what was the standard when Vape Organics launched,” Daniela shares. “It was exciting because we did something totally different, and more and more people have embraced it.” It hasn’t been an easy road; the path to success is paved with hard work and often a financial burden, and Vape Organics had to work extra hard to build their reputation. “When we first launched, people weren’t really interested in certified organic e-liquids. There were already companies claiming

“We need to transcend the vape community if we want to see change.” Teamwork makes the dream work.

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TCI's capacity for putting out the best products on the market.

comes the threat of undesirable emissions,” Eko explains, continuing: “This feature on the Dagger detects the boiling point of any liquid used and won’t heat above that, self-adjusting throughout a vaping session and making it easier to use for newer vapers “It’s amazing how attention to safety, with features like full temperature control and overheat protection, has led to enhanced accessibility. It’s another step forward in a constant quest for progress, something that is so characteristic of the vape industry as a whole.” Even their marketing strategy is different from the mainstream. The Vape Organics logo

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and image are reminiscent of the products themselves - natural and pure. White backgrounds, earthy tones of green, brown, and blue, a friendly smile, and some clouds. Nothing flashy, no dressing up and popping out—just clean and simple, with a welcoming tone, something developed by Sheerlie. “I took on creative, so I knew from the start I wasn’t going in the typical direction. With female artistic direction we aim to celebrate femininity and highlight the beauty of the natural world,” she says. Indeed, a few short years ago, women were sexualized and exploited in order to market juices left and right. “We’re vapers, we’re members of this

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to be organic on the market, but they often contained PG... Most people didn’t even believe that e-liquid could be certified organic—by a federal agency. Later, with the diacetyl scares, more people were alerted to the importance of ingredients. From day one we took it upon ourselves to highlight the unnecessary nature of certain ingredients and raise awareness, including about how far beyond just ingredients organic certification goes,” Sheerlie explains. “Even if we aren’t the biggest e-liquid company, we do put all of our resources into making the best product possible… it’s a labor of love,” Tamara Okada, Operations Manager, adds.

Size does matter.

This driving force behind Vape Organics is what makes it so special - their dedicated team advocates for cooperation and is constantly trying to cultivate and enhance the sense of

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community within the vape industry. “I don’t see us going anywhere as an industry without working together,” Sheerlie says. “Even on the technical things, like the FDA compliance process. We could be working together and sharing resources and information! Companies focused on collaboration and cooperation, and which have something to bring to the shared table, are going to be the ones that stick around. I mean, why not work together? Let’s do things in a way that really benefits and is sustainable for everyone committed to the industry so that we can continue to develop and innovate the amazing technology that we’ve been blessed with.”

“We’re in a good place to move forward, but we do need other groups to connect with, of course. We can’t do this alone… we’ve got to work together,” Eko confirms. Being in Southern California gives the company a unique position in the vape community, with SoCal being the main hub for the international community. “We’re not just selling products there, we’re also building communities. We take active roles with our international partners to help communities outside of our own,” he adds. “We need to transcend the vape community if we want to see change,” says Daniela.

“We saw what happened with Prop 56 and we know it was a total landslide because our industry was lumped together with the cigarette industry and our story was not heard. Despite all of the information the vape community put out there on social media, it wasn’t enough. We need to educate the people beyond our own community in order to change the narrative.” How do they plan to do that? Not alone. Sheerlie says they encourage their clientele to share their stories on social media, while the company itself continues to innovate and develop new, safer technologies and high-

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VO's starting lineup.


“I don’t see us going anywhere as an industry without working together”

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quality products that help shift perspectives of the industry. “We want vapers to share their stories, why they vape, how it’s changed their lives, and I think if we continue to challenge the mainstream narrative about vaping, including through avenues with diverse audiences, such as Tokewell, that hopefully, it’ll trickle into the mainstream. This issue of nonsensical overregulation and powerful lobbies is way beyond the vape industry, and a lot of other groups are dealing with the same thing. If we can connect with other

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movements, other communities, we’ll be so much bigger than just ‘the vape industry,’ and that’s how we get people to see and understand the truth about vaping. This is already happening—we saw it in the fight against Prop 56 to a certain extent, we see it in the investigative documentary A Billion Lives. We need to continue…” Sheerlie argues. “We stick to our mission, and we believe in our mission,” Eko adds. “Money is not our ultimate goal, it’s what we get while fulfilling our mission. It’s funny, I hear some people in the industry who are just looking to make money in a difficult economy, and that’s just not what we’re about. We believe we should provide the best for vapers, and we’re in the perfect position to deliver that.” Not only has the company made a difference here, Vape Organics is making waves on the international scene as well. While the American market took some time to respond to this new product on store shelves, international communities flocked to Vape Organics’ products, clearly excited to see a USDA certified organic product. A government regulated seal was something

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no other vape company could claim. “We’ll be focusing on the international market, and it’d be great to expand our work with others abroad, pooling our research and resources together and helping each other out,” says Tamara Okada. “We’re super excited about our expansion as a way to connect and learn what other countries require versus what we work with here at home.”

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“We just hope that some industry peers will see what we do and will be inspired to either work with us or take the initiative to move forward within the industry,” says Eko. “We’re at a critical juncture, and we need help from everyone within the industry. We’ve come so far in three years, and if everyone continues to move forward in the same direction, it’ll be great!” Indeed it could be. While we are but a humble and tight-knit community, we are scattered, and the only way to progress and move forward is to come together. If we can hold our community’s industry leaders to a higher standard, demand that they care about what we need as much as we do, then all the world will be better for it.

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GET OUT and

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DRIVE WO R DS BY : MA X I MI LLI A N S TER LI NG S NA P S BY : LEA H MO R I YA MA

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The universe always seems to find a way to work itself out. Case in point, the stars aligned when Porsche legend Magnus Walker said yes to sitting down with us for an interview. Magnus was in the process of writing an autobiographical book and fresh into the reflection of his life's work as a legend in the automotive world - he has been our unicorn and we’ve finally caught up with him. During the course of our interview, the one thing he emphasized was that he’s never once had a gameplan and that he’s always allowed things to manifest organically. Luckily, things came together as they should and we are now showcasing a living legend in the Porsche game.

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I “PORSCHE IS MY POISON AND DRUG OF CHOICE.” TOKEWELL MAGAZINE

n 1977, when he was 10 years old, Magnus' father took him to the Earls Court Motor Show, where he met his first love -- a white 1977 Martini Porsche 911 Turbo. "I always say any kid who grew up in the 70's, chances are that you had Porsche Turbo, Lamborghini Countach or a Ferrari Berlinetta boxer. Those were the iconic dream cars of that era. I wrote a letter to Porsche to ask for a job to design cars for them and they actually wrote back with a ‘hey, call us when you're older,’ or some words to that effect. I never gave up on the dream," Magnus

reminisces. Realizing that he’d had about as much success as a 10-year-old could by garnering a response from Porsche, he funneled his tenacity to athletics. "I eventually had a passion for middle distance, cross-country running. I was more of a lone wolf individual sports guy, versus a team sports guy. Being successful at an early age, really taught me discipline and self-reliance," he tells us. Magnus left school with two O-levels when he was 15, and in 1986, he took a trip to the US and landed in

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The legendary and iconic 277.


“People are afraid of failure and ask for too many people's advice.”

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Michigan. When he arrived, Magnus spent a summer as a camp counselor in Detroit for underprivileged inner-city kids. "You can image what that was like - I was this long-haired rock n' roll guy working with kids that were entirely into RUN DMC and LL Cool J. I learned what I call to be an Adaptive Swimmer - I was dropped into an unfamiliar environment and had to learn to sink or swim," says Magnus. Shortly after, he made his way out to 1980s’ Hollywood, the epicenter of rock n’ roll and its cultural icons such as Gun n’ Roses and Mötley Crüe. Never one to have a gameplan, his first business venture was selling custom Levi's on the Venice Beach Boardwalk. In 1994, he met his wife, Karen, and collectively they built a rock-inspired fashion label, which became wildly successful.

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“Serious was designed and influenced by what I was into at the time. Red, white and blue Americana,” he remarks. “We liked rock n' roll, punk rock and country and just threw it in a blender and out came our brand. We sold to a small chain store at the time called Hot Topic. We grew with them pretty big."

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With the Serious label taking off, the duo purchased their 26,000 square foot warehouse and renovated the interior that would give Joanna Gaines a run for her money. "When we bought this building 14 years ago, people thought we were crazy," he remembers. "Back then the neighborhood was desolate and transient. Now, it's worth over 10x what we bought it for.” Shortly after they bought the warehouse, the LA Times did an article about urban loft gentrification and the day after the article was published, they got a phone call from a production company asking to rent it as a film location for a music video. They'd later find out it was for Missy Elliot. "30 years later, I feel whatever it is you want to do in life, you can do here in LA. This city has the infrastructure to make things happen so long as you remain focused,” he says. “I've always had the British bulldog, TOKEWELL MAGAZINE

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reminding all to follow their dreams, for no one can stop them. “Realize that this is your time, your story, your life,” Mod tells us. “You need to get yourself on point before you can really help the world. It’s a phrase meant to empower you.”

Born in Minnesota to a home full of musical influences, Mod Sun pulled inspiration from everyone from the great Bob Dylan to the god of musicians, Prince. And while he started out as a drummer in post hardcore band Four Letter Lie and later on Scary Kids

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Geniuses' at work. "There are no shortcuts in evolution"

Scaring Kids, Mod Sun has never let himself be defined by any single thing. With the publishing of his book Did I Ever Wake Up?, Mod completed one of many life dreams that of becoming an author before the age of 25. “The most beautiful thing about anything you wanna do is that the second that you’ve done it once, you become that,” he says. “Writing a book was one of those things. I realized that if I could write something real, people would read it.”. Now at 29, he has multiple publications

follow-your-gut, can-do spirit and it's always resonated with being in LA. You could always do what and be what you want here. Now we’ve been in the film location business for over 16 years - we rent part of our building for a shoot for production companies." Along with his impressive success comes his impressive car collection. Magnus has owned over 40 Porsches, but the 277 is still his unicorn. Several years ago, on a 911-centric forum, Walker began a thread called "Porsche Collection Out of Control Hobby", which became a somewhat of a viral hit. "I got an email from a gentleman named Tamir Moscovici," he says, "a director and a passionate Porsche guy who wanted something edgy for his reel." Moscovici flew to LA, and together the two petrolheads created a 30 minute documentary about Walker and his 911 obsession called Urban Outlaw. The trailer for Urban Outlaw was picked up by the Top Gear website and the film premiered at the Raindance Festival to critical acclaim. "October 15, 2012, Urban Outlaw came out and that changed my life.

Four and a half years later, I'm still getting hit up from that movie,” says Magnus. Magnus' bespoke Porsches are prized for their individuality, and the same can be said about their creator. Revered like a '82 W.L. Weller Bourbon, the 50-year-old Englishman lives and works in a cluster of sprawling gentrified warehouses and historic buildings in the iconic DTLA Arts District. His distinct features are buried beneath a beard ZZ Top would be impressed with and dreads Bob Marley would be proud of. His arms are blasted in ink, and his Sheffield accent is slightly diluted by over 30 years of SoCal’s melting pot of dialects. He is the counterculture epitome of what a world renowned Porsche icon would be. As the garage doors open up, the visual experience is akin to the drapes pulling back to reveal the Sistine Chapel for the first time. One look at Magnus' garage and the scope of his passion becomes irrefutable - the room houses a fleet of gleaming 911s, which include a model from every year between 1964 and 1973.

Miles Davis, Frank Sinatra, Janis Joplin, Bob Marley and Andy Warhol adorn his epidermal real estate. Mod Sun was born into the wrong generation - the car he drives, the home he lives in, the clothes he wears, they’re all from an era long since passed. His very being pays homage to the cultural pioneers of the past, those who paved the way for modern day rock stars. And that’s exactly what makes his endeavors so successful - it engages the audience, inviting them to experience something so different from what’s already out there. “I’m not inspired by anything happening right now,” he tells us. “We’re in a recycled state right now, and what I bring to the

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A collection of some of Magnus' works.

table is something that needs to be spoken for. True rebels, people that lived long ago, that’s what’s important to me, and I try to keep their spirit alive.” He injects every bit of himself into his work. “Songs will define me for the rest of my life,” he firmly believes. “I don’t put out anything that may be sacrificing the real essence of what I want to do.”

The thing that stands out the most about Mod Sun isn’t his looks or his tattoos - it’s his positive attitude and belief in self empowerment. It’s so integrated into who he is, it’s even in his name - Movement On Dreams Stand Under None, a phrase


“People overthink things and have to have a gameplan and they rush. Sometimes you gotta let things roll a bit.”

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There are a few others, in various phases of surgery spread around the complex. "It's a hobby that got out of control," he says. Magnus is globally known for his "Outlaw" builds - sport, streetable track cars. Cars that mean taking on aggressive canyon runs and track days while still being able to smash down Wilshire Blvd on the way to a meeting. His builds are so sought after that he gets propositioned more than Heidi Fliess for his skillset. "I don't build cars for people, I build them for myself. And occasionally, I sell if need to," he says. “There's a business opportunity in building customer cars, but to me, that would all of

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a sudden mean responsibility, accountability, timelines, deadlines, pressure. Right now, I can do what I want, when I want. The biggest difference between me and other builders is that this is a hobby for me," he makes clear. Having said that, he has lent his celebrity to collaborations with the likes of MOMO, Hot Wheels, Need for Speed and Porsche themselves to name a few, all because he can. This story was never about Magnus' impeccable and impressive Porsche collection. It was always about the man himself. A young lad from Sheffield, England who came to the US with zero plans except for a dream

Brandon Leidel CEO | Vapor Shark shot on location

and what he calls, “British bulldog, followyour-gut, can-do spirit.” He's somebody who always took the path less traveled, and never took no for an answer while doing things his way on his road to success.

Tell us about your passion for architecture? Things just evolve. Perhaps looking back, it was my parents dragging me to all these stately homes in England. It was probably being in England and being around castles, but it wasn't real until I came to LA when I really had an appreciation for architecture.

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Has anything surprised you since you've been reflecting? Fuck yes! Like how I came from England at 19 to where I am now with a few toys. I didn't think that would happen. I really hadn't had time to reflect until lately. I've always approached everything with my head down and running forward. I describe my 20's as a blur of partying. My 30's, you get serious about business and really working 12-15 hour days and then my 40's hit and things started to level off. Now, I'm 50 and it's a pivotal number and it's reflective.

How long have you been growing your beard for? I started growing it in 2000. I'm lazy and shaving seemed to be a chore at the time and 17 years later, the beards still here.

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What is your favorite chassis? My favorite car is the 277 which is the second Porsche I ever bought. It's the one I’m most associated with. There have been models made after the car, it's the most recognizable and been in videos. It's a 1971 911 T. It's got Patina and memories and been to 5-6 years of 30-40 track days a year. It's part of my life. It's like my favorite pair of old shoes.

Automotive character is important to you. Why? Driving is freedom. It's not about A to B, it's about the journey along the way. New cars are insulated. You don't smell the gas or the oil. It's a sensory thing and nostalgia. There's 50 years of leather, wood, sweat, spilled coffee. when you open the door, there's just something. To me, I build cars to be driven.

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Some people brag about a car that has 800 miles. I don't care about that. There's no story behind that car. It's about the people. If the car just sits there, there's no story. People have to get behind the wheel of the car and create the story. Then the story becomes the soul of the car -- the journey.

With 911s making a huge comeback, what are your thoughts on the RWB movement? Here's a Nakai-san wearing my Urban Outlaw T-shirt. We first met in London in 2013 and then again at the Need for Speed event. I really like what Nakai-san is doing with his RWB builds. He's traveling the world and

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doing this thing. The Porsche pie is pretty big, and I'm a fan of his work.

Any other cars you're into besides Porsche? For sure. At one time before I was purely Porsche, I had a ‘65 GT3 Mustang replica, a ‘60 E-Type Jag, a ‘73 Lotus Europa, two Super Bees, a ‘79 Ferrari 308 GTB. Little by little, I got rid of things that weren't Porsche. As great as the E-Type Jaguar was, it didn't corner well, and as great as that Super Bee was, it was only great in a straight line. As amazing as the Mustang was, it didn't handle as good as the Porsche, as cool as the Lotus Europa was, 'Still, it wasn't a 911. So, I got rid of everything that wasn't a 911.”

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NORML -IZING POLITICAL

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LANDSCAPE WO R DS BY : LEI LA NI A NDER S O N S NA P S BY : NO R ML

The year is winding down, and it's almost time to hit the voting booths. Before you know it, you'll be standing outside the polls, making sure your voice is heard. There are tons of big ticket items on the ballot this year, not least among them the legalization of everyone's favorite miracle crop, marijuana. In fact, at least five states will be asking their citizens to decide whether or not to fully legalize the controversial plant, including Tokewell's very own home state, California. There's a great deal of excitement surrounding cannabis legalization all across the country this year, and information regarding everything from recreational to medicinal and industrial use is abundant wherever you turn. One name that surfaces again and again when you research cannabis legalization is NORML. If you haven't seen them before, NORML, (the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws) is a Washington, D.C. based non-profit aimed at reforming laws regarding marijuana's non-medical uses. Started by Keith Stroup in 1970, NORML has remained at the front of the decriminalization movement since the beginning and continues to fight the good fight. Today, we sit with Keith and talk with him about the road so far and what lies in store for the future of cannabis.

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“I liked the idea of using my law degree to impact public policy rather than represent individual clients...I became convinced that there were better and more important things to do with one's law degree than help people get rich.”

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lthough not a big part of his life until college, Keith, having graduated Georgetown Law School at the height of the Vietnam conflict, was radicalized by the draft, and the notion that he and many of his generation were going to be forced into something they wanted no part of. With few exceptions, young men were being drafted into a war they did not choose, and anti-war demonstrations were at their height. With over half a million demonstrating outrage at their situation, many of Keith's peers began to associate the choice to freely smoke marijuana with their choice of giving their lives for their country. Keith was one of the lucky ones - with the help of the National Lawyers Guild, he managed to get a "critical skills deferment" for his job at the National Commission on Product Safety, an outgrowth of the work started by Ralph Nader. When his work with the commission finished, not only was Keith no longer eligible for the draft, but he had found something he was genuinely interested in doing with his law degree changing public policy in favor of the people. With that in mind, he gathered some like minded colleagues and friends and founded NORML. It's been a long hard road for the organization, watching things go from one step forward to two steps back, with the decriminalization of marijuana in 11 states throughout the ‘70s to the Just Say No movement that came along with the Reagan administration, but Keith keeps fighting the good fight and doesn't back down.

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Besides Nader, were there any other influences that encouraged the work you do? I do credit working around Ralph Nader for my appreciation of public-interest law, but I credit my friendship with former Attorney General Ramsay Clark for giving me the purpose and sense of mission to take that leap of faith and found NORML. He had resigned as US Attorney General only a few months earlier and had become the leading, outspoken advocate of ending the war. He'd published a book called A Crime in America, and in that book he actually advocated for the legalization of marijuana. I was blown away; I had no idea that someone of his stature was calling for this. I managed to meet with him and asked him if this was something I should be doing or if this was a foolish waste of my law degree. He was wonderfully encouraging and reinforcing, and even ended up serving on the NORML advisory board for many years later on.

You were a political science major and a law school graduate. What motivated you to start NORML? I liked the idea of using my law degree to impact public policy rather than represent individual clients. I was raised on a farm in Illinois - I thought when you graduated law school, you went home, practiced law, got rich, and led a boring life. When I started work with the commission, I was introduced to this concept of public interest law, and it really changed my whole sense of what you could do with a law degree. I didn't

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KS speaks to an annual July 4th marijuana legalization protest in front of the White House in 1977.

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even know there was such a thing (as public interest law). Admittedly, the work I did with the commission didn't exactly save the world (with all that was going on at the time), but it gave me two years to familiarize myself with public interest law, and I became convinced that there were better and more important things to do with one's law degree than help people get rich. Helping shape a more people friendly policy was much more satisfying.

Why was marijuana legalization so important? What else did legalization represent? Well, in 1968, when you went to these antiwar demonstrations, there was a lot of open marijuana smoking. People had begun to not just oppose the government's involvement in the Vietnam war, but the draft caused a lot of us to examine and question other positions the government had. Nothing makes you challenge authorities more than when you're faced with being drafted into a war that you don't understand and don't want to be a part of.

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Do you think your political and legal background lend credibility to your mission when you speak to your peers outside of the MMJ community?

be treating us like criminals if we were being responsible marijuana smokers.

During the early years, no doubt having a law degree and the number of respected people that we were associated with, like Clark and Dr. Lester Grinspoon at Harvard, gave us the credibility that we otherwise wouldn't have had. Ralph was not personally associated with the legalization of marijuana, although I was close friends with the early Nader's Raiders. Frankly, most people, including most of my friends, initially thought this was a silly thing to be doing - they didn't even think it was realistic. They would start off laughing about it, but that changed when they got to know what we were about and understood that we weren't trying to turn on America or anything like that, we just wanted to end the prohibition and arrest of marijuana smokers. We just wanted America to understand that the government shouldn't

The first opportunity came in 1972, when Congress established the National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse.It was a small provision of the Controlled Substances Act of 1970, a terrible act that that criminalizes marijuana and remains intact today. We worked closely with (at the time) Rep. Ed Koch, and Sens. Harold Hughes and Jacob Javits, and others, who were charged with studying the issue of marijuana legalization as well as other illicit drugs, and make a recommendation to Congress. We were able, after some initial opposition, to testify before the commission, and at the end, the commission recommended that the government should stop arresting marijuana smokers, what we now call decriminalization, and that it was a mistake to treat marijuana smokers like criminals. Despite the recommendation to remove criminal penalties

When was NORML finally given the credibility and attention it deserved?

for personal use and possession of marijuana, Congress of course ignored the commission, but this gave NORML a chance to take the decriminalization battle to the states, and over time, with a great deal of media attention both on the local and national levels, people began to take us more seriously because of it.

When you started NORML, did you know how hard the road ahead would be? When we started, we generally thought it might take a decade or a little longer to legalize. I think we were a little naĂŻve to say the least, but it takes some of that naivety and idealism to do this kind of work. There were no provisions in the (Controlled Substances) act to try and implement the recommendation, so NORML picked up that obligation, and we spent the next ten years trying to find any state legislators who might support a marijuana decriminalization bill. It was a long haul, but there really was no way to accomplish it quickly. We simply had to take the time and make the effort to win the hearts and minds of the American people.

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Sounds like it was a lot of work for a very long awaited payoff. Was it worth it? Absolutely. Even if it's four and a half decades later, it's finally happening! (laughs) The only way we win this issue, and the only reason we are winning it, is because we've finally picked up the support of the majority of the nonsmokers as well, and that is crucial. About 40% of the American population has tried marijuana at some point in their lives, but only about 15% of adults are current users. Today, we have at least five national polls that show between 56-61% of the American public now support full marijuana legalization, which means we've finally reached that turning point we'd been working so hard for.

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consumers got what consumers in any other field got: a product that is safe, convenient, and affordable. We want our marijuana tested by a state certified lab, we want to make sure there's no mold or pesticides, that the labeling is accurate, the levels of THC and CBD, stuff like that. It was absurd, of course, to say these things earlier in NORML's creation, because marijuana was contraband and a lab would be fined for possessing it. But now you've got a growing list of partial and fully decriminalized states, so we can now finally focus on those consumer aspects that have had to take a backseat until now. We can now go and make sure that the consumer is in fact protected, a fight that I expect will take several more years, but one that we will win.

What’s in the future for NORML?

What do we need to do, as a community, to help the legalization of marijuana?

We started as a consumer lobby, so I think we will be going back to our roots. What we initially wanted to do was to ensure that our

We will have to focus on things like job discrimination, child custody, welfare laws, and DUID offenses. Private employers can

Geniuses' at work. "There are no shortcuts in evolution"

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AP photo of KS siting in the NORML office in the basement of his home in downtown DC, with a plastic marijuana plant, in early 1971.

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“The draft caused a lot of us to examine and question other positions the government had. Nothing makes you challenge authorities more than when you're faced with being drafted into a war that you don't understand and don't want to be a part of.�

Another one of Brandon's business ventures - The Green Spot

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still dismiss you for testing positive for THC, despite under decriminalization laws. Parents have to fight to maintain custody of their children because someone smelled marijuana and assumed they were under unfit parents, simply because they smoke marijuana. As for driving under the influences, some states have zero tolerance laws that state any level of THC in your system is automatically deemed as driving impairment. No one wants an impaired driver on the road or impaired worker on the job. What we need are tests that measure impairment, not ones that test whether or not you smoked a joint over the weekend.

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“One of the biggest challenges overall was parents getting good clean products to their children.”

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W

e know it by so many names cannabis, marijuana, ganja, herb, pot, mary jane. Whatever we call it, how it all works is still the same. Chemical structures known as cannabinoids create medicinal and psychoactive effects on the human body which people utilize for both recreational and medicinal use. Cannabinoids such as CBD and THC are more well known; CBD for its anti-inflammatory and anti-psychotic effects, THC for its psychoactive effects, often sought after by recreational users, as well as its pain relieving medicinal applications. Its use in treating cancer and epileptic patients has produced an abundance of stories of people leading a better quality of life with its use rather than when they had been following pharmaceutical regimens. Stories of recovery

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with the help of cannabis are truly incredible, just ask any person with a recovery story to tell. Cannabis is truly a rare botanical wonder.

flower. Who said medicating couldn’t be more enjoyable? This is not your average medicine, and cannabis isn’t your average plant, either.

And now, with the legalization of marijuana slowly sweeping the nation a few states at a time, the medicinal marijuana industry is getting more and more creative, especially with cannabis-infused edibles. Walk into any dispensary and you’re sure to find a section dedicated to the patients who prefer to ingest their cannabis rather than inhale it, and it’s definitely not filled with those pot brownies you made that one time in college. Everything from cookies to ice cream to coffee and teas and honey to “budder” and popcorn, there’s bound to be something that satisfies your taste buds if you’re just not that into smoking the

So adults who can get a doctor’s prescription can enjoy their medication in a goodie form of their choice, kinda like getting a choice between taking liquid medicine or a pill. But what about the children? Yes, the children. And yes, as your humble writing servant I know that suggesting children take cannabis in any form is a questionable, if not idea, but so is the fact that children also suffer from ailments like cancer, epilepsy, and autism too, not just adults. And they don’t typically have the choice to choose what form of medication they take. It’s a hotly debated topic, and we here at

Tokewell have proudly shined the spotlight on those taking things into their own hands, taking the time to do their research, get all the right experts, and lab test everything and put out products such as CBD oils with young patients as their main focus, namely the Stanley Brothers, O.Pen Vape and Colorado Harvest Company just to name a few. Meet Pepper Rae, creator of Pepper & Co Medibles, a non-profit edibles company with a mission to educate local communities and heal the overlooked issues that plague them. All Pepper & Co products are handcrafted with natural, organic ingredients and are gluten free, and each order can be customized to each patient’s needs. Depending on what you order, many of her products donate to her many

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P 89 community-based projects, such as sheltering the homeless and funding rooftop community gardens. To say that Pepper is a woman of many talents is putting it lightly - she’s looking to save the world in the nicest way possible. She makes the most amazing looking edibles you ever did see - rice krispie treats turned into sushi sets, Disney character candy apples, emoji rice krispies, chocolate covered strawberries and pretzel sticks, the list goes on and on. Walking by any of her delectable creations is less reminiscent of your average dispensary and more nostalgic of confectionary shops from an era long since gone. And why you ask, does she make all these tasty treats? Well, you could say she’s got a culinary bone or two in her body - she was on the Star Wars episode of Cupcake Wars (check out the Millenium Falcon stand she built!), but also, she understands that sometimes, feelings need to be taken into account when your body is betraying you, and sometimes Big Pharma’s Fix It All’s just aren’t what you need. Adults have the choice to choose medical marijuana as an alternative to

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certain medicinal regimens in some states, but children do not. If a parent chooses this path for an ailing child, it’s often the last resort. Children going through these things shouldn’t have to suffer, and Pepper makes her products with that in mind. “So many children were coming through with these challenges in their lives, like epilepsy and autism, and doctors would rather do surgery, cut out a piece of that child’s brain, rather than even consider recommending cannabis,” she says. “It’s absurd! That’s kinda what sparked it all. As a mother, I felt it was really important to look more into this, medically speaking. There had to be a more natural, easier way of dealing with these challenges.” Working as an event coordinator when she first stepped into the cannabis industry seven years ago, Pepper started as a budtender and quickly worked her way up to becoming a regional manager of 25 different dispensaries within just a few months. Pepper learned

“It’s nice to see (patients) come in regularly and more and more you see their lives improve, their bonds improve, and it’s just insane that I was able to help provide that.”

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P 91 all she could about the plant itself, different strains, lab testing and products, and most importantly, what would help her patients most. Such passion is a rare thing in the medical marijuana industry, and Pepper is a rare person to hAve on your team. She forms bonds with her patients and feels blessed to witness their lives improve over time. “It’s nice to see them come in regularly and more and more you see their lives improve, their (familial) bonds improve, and it’s just insane that I was able to help provide that.” Not only is she great with patients, she has a somewhat unique perspective that not all patients have. Pepper herself is a medicinal marijuana patient - she’s recovering from anorexia and was recently diagnosed with epilepsy, something that has upset her lifestyle more than imaginable. She was in and out of hospitals for weeks at a time, she lost the ability to speak, to walk at one point, and yet if you saw her on the street today, you’d never even know it. This strong woman attributes the improvements in her quality of life to cannabis. “Cannabis has saved my life,”

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she proudly states. She started her nonprofit with the goal to heal local communities and support education on the benefits of cannabis and CBD and hopes to continue it for the foreseeable future. With the help of her assistant D. Corsetti and biochemist J. Devure, as well as the support of her daughter (her number one fan), the local community, and her patients, Pepper hopes to expand and work with The Children’s Hospital sometime in the near future.

Saving little kids, sheltering and feeding the homeless, is there anything you do that isn’t considered saving the world? Well, it’s not so much saving the world as it is questioning why certain things still exist. Like, if we can create so much good in the world today, why aren’t we fixing the things that need it most? Why haven’t things changed, how have they not changed? The homeless epidemic is a problem that could be fixed.

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Tell us about your work with the homeless. With my company, I work with small housing communities that try and establish a center where people can build, have a place to shower, to eat, to sleep, to shelter their kids. If they’re serious about getting back on their feet, then we are the stepping stone. If they really want the sobriety, the health insurance, the psychiatric help, we’re there for them. We provide all the basic necessities one will need to get a job, to go out and be productive, and hopefully it works as a stepping stone to help them improve their lives more.

And your work with the church? We’re looking to do the Food 4 All project which is a program that I’m starting off next summer. I’m taking all my master growers and their equipment and they’re gonna be setting up small fruit and vegetable gardens on the top of local churches. They’re gonna harvest fresh fruit and vegetables for the homeless, and the homeless and church will be in charge

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of upkeep, kinda like community volunteers. All my growers are horticulturally educated, so they’ll be able to guide the community if they have any questions.

What makes your program different from programs like Habitat for Humanity? Habitat for Humanity is really important, but in order to get in, you need an income, so that’s not quite a stepping stone, that’s more like a gap. There’s such an incredible gap between homeless and Habitat for Humanity - you have to have an income, which means you need a job, but if you can’t shower for work, how do you keep a job to make your income? So that’s where my company comes in - my company offers a guideline and a plan, sorta like a triangle in effect - from the rooftop gardens to the housing for the homeless and getting them into serious detox programs and mental health evaluations so that they can continuously grow out of my program and back into their own lives, back into the community. I don’t care who you are, what

drugs you’re on, what you’re life is. If you’re on the street, something happened. You didn’t want to be there, and those that really want to change will take the program seriously. I think it’s gonna change a lot of lives.

What has been the biggest challenge working in all this? Epilepsy has set me back a lot, actually, but Chef Dee @itsdeliciouslydee and Teresa @ trippy_treez have continued to inspire me to be brave and to keep growing towards the sun. One of the biggest challenges overall was parents getting good clean products to their children. When I realized it was such a big issue, I started learning more about patients and products and lab testing. The Healing Alchemist provides us with the cleanest, lab tested THC and CBD medication available on the market, and I use nothing but the best ingredients in the kitchen. People don’t always want sweet, but what they do always want is healthy. Just about everything can be made vegan or sugar-free if it isn’t already.

And the best part of it all? Wow, helping the people who really need it. The children, the elderly, the sick...myself. Definitely helping people as well as myself has been the biggest win. I also really appreciate all the support I’ve gotten from the community, as well as my daughter. If she didn’t believe in what I was doing, I think it’d really anchor me down. And all the people who hit me up with their products, asking for me to create something for them is amazing, and of course, I oblige because I love to play in the kitchen. That kind of support is priceless.

What’s the most important thing you’ve learned since you started? Learning that providing is different from going through the experience. Seeing what my patients went through versus feeling it, and then feeling the reconnection when you smoke CBD, it’s insane. I couldn’t talk, I couldn’t walk, I couldn’t be in the light, I couldn’t be around noise; I was literally in a black room for three

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months. When you’re sitting there, you don’t really have a peaceful second to yourself, but the second I took Charlotte’s Web CBD, everything reconnected again! And little by little, I connected again. It was a lot of hard work, but I regained my ability to walk and talk, and that’s why I believe in this stuff even more now! My seizure medications, alongside CBD, has balanced me out enough to regain control in my life.

One last question - will we see you on Cupcake Wars again? Yes! We’ve been asked to come on again, which we definitely want to do. I’m very competitive and was an art director when we did the Star Wars episode. I went in with my girlfriend Desiree who owns Divine Cupcakes & Wine Bar, who was more into the flavor. I’m more into details and aesthetics, so I decorated all the different flavors. I enrolled in the cake challenge, it won’t be medicated, but it’s something I’m really excited about! It was a great experience that taught me to be brave and to challenge myself.

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“Providing is different from going through the experience. Seeing what my patients went through versus feeling it, and then feeling the reconnection… is insane.”

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Tokewell issue 16  
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