Living It Up In School – Minus the Contact High

As a youngster in high school, I would have to wake up early every morning to catch the school bus and almost every morning, I was introduced to peer pressure. “Wanna (sic) blaze?” a fellow student with lazy, bloodshot eyes asked while holding a joint.

It was much too easy for me to turn down the young man’s offer, especially since I’ve seen the outcome of it. There he stood, dressed inappropriately for school, hair hardly kept up, bloodshot eyes, a slur in his speech and a sluggish stride.

I don’t think that was very fitting for my personality, but I’ve come to realize that the description was partly a stereotype of the common “pot head.” My views of marijuana and the effect it has on the lifestyles of those who smoke it have slightly changed. This epiphany occurred during my internship in Orlando when I temporarily roomed with my down to earth, hippie cousin.

My cousin is awesome. She shared with me her ideas of being environmentally conscious and how as journalists, we have the talent to change the world. Sometimes, her chatty *-nature could be the side effects of the Mary Jane she was puffing on the regular, but her constant engaging conversations brought out a side of me that wanted to be more aware of going green—without the drug-affiliation. Almost every day, she would puff, puff and not pass the joint, but pass on useful information.

She was the kind of smoker that made me rethink the idea of smoking. Did I mention that she was a lawyer and at one point, she had her own firm? Putting down the somewhat uptight life of a lawyer in exchange for the free-spirited journalist she is now, she kept me up to date with every issue that was going on in and outside of our country.

She was practically my USA Today, New York Times and Washington Post all in one. I guess I could call her my personal iPhone app. But with all this said, why didn’t I ever partake smoking weed with her? It was offered plenty of times. One time she even asked me how I wanted to try it.

“I don’t care how you try it, sweetheart. We can bake it in cookies, brownies, smoke a joint or hit a bong, I don’t care. Its up to you,” she asked with an energetic tone. I guess I couldn’t get over the fact that marijuana is dubbed as a drug.

Many say that it’s simply a plant, but in the words of comedian Katt Williams, “If you just so happen to set it on fire, there are some effects.”